Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Week of Warming

Public weather briefing

As temperatures began to warm up throughout the day, we expect Madison to remain cloudy until the weekend.  Although there is some small chance of precipitation in our area, we do not expect any significant snow accumulation.  Low temperatures tonight will be around 20, and will drop down tomorrow night, but the rest of the week should see a continuing warming trend.  Daytime high temperatures will slowly increase to the upper 30's by the weekend with partly sunny skies, but strong winds out of the north and east will make it feel a bit cooler.  The weekend is shaping up to be much nicer than the previous, and should even continue through the following week.


Tonight. Cloudy and cool.  Low in the lower 20's. Small chance of precipitation.

WednesdayVery sunny and the high will be 30 with winds out of the northwest at about 20 knots.

Wednesday night. Partly cloudy and cooler.  Low around 15 with weaker winds out of the north.

Thursday.  Mostly cloudy with a high again at 30 and winds out of the southeast around 10 knots. Clouds persist into the night with a low of 25.

Friday. Cloudy high in the upper 30's.

Outlook for Saturday through Monday. Partly cloudy Saturday through Monoday with highs reaching the mid to upper 30's and very little chance of precipitation. Lows in the mid to upper 20's. [CONFIDENCE: Medium-High]

Forecast Discussion

Tuesday night will be mostly cloudy, insulating the surface temperatures and by preventing radiative cooling.  Northwesterly winds overnight will advect a moderate cold air mass, affecting most of the Midwest.  Clouds will persist through the middle to the end of the week limiting daily highs, but raising the overnight lows. bringing up the high temperature, but cloudy into the night insulating the area making a warmer low.  A low-level ridge will move through on early Sunday, initially advecting significant warm air into Madison making for our warmest temperatures over the weekend.   (average daily high temperature for later in the week 32F; low 22F).

The most difficult part of our forecast is determining the possibility of precipitation tonight, as a linear cold front appears to be moving west to east in northern in Wisconsin. It is expected that the precipitation associated will remain north of the Madison area, but some models show a slight chance of precipitation in southern Wisconsin.

Rachel Down and Sam Hartwick


  1. Our general forecast was fairly consistent especially when it came to the sky coverage throughout the week. The most unexpected change from our forecast was a light rain on Monday morning near the end of our forecasted week. We expected a small chance of precipitation, but we were originally doubtful about the likelihood.

  2. Rachel and Sam - All in all, I think these are a nice series of blog posts that you two have put together for round 2. I think that you do a particularly nice job discussing your temperature forecasts while considering the cloud cover and temperature advection patterns. You also do a nice job discussing the chance of precipitation across southern Wisconsin with respect to the position of the cold front. Some ways that I think that you could have improved relate primarily to the specificity that you provided within your discussions. For instance, within the forecast discussion section, you'll definitely want to include additional information on the processes driving the precipitation (i.e. is the front experiencing frontogenesis at all?). Also, definitely include some discussion of the pertinent atmospheric structures affecting the weather in your public briefing. For example, you can still mention that high pressure is dominating the weather pattern or a cold front produces a drop in temperatures. The more detailed discussion of those structures would then be reserved for the actual forecast discussion section. Finally, in the forecast itself, if you identify a chance of precipitation, make sure to include the type of precipitation too (i.e. snow vs. rain). Beyond that, though, this was a solid effort!


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