An interesting and potentially dangerous weather day is upon us here in WNC, with the chance for high impact storms is possible this afternoon. Currently this morning, several scattered showers are moving through WNC, and those will continue throughout the morning. After this first line pushes through, some clearing will occur, and then another line of storms will develop. Regarding timing of the strongest storms, I believe that after some clearing around 2pm, larger supercells will develop due to increased instability. These storms will then push Northeast, and could drop a tornado somewhere in the Foothills of NC or even in WNC. I am not saying that a tornado is certain, but the ingredients looks to be in place this afternoon across portions of the Western part of NC for one to develop. Therefore you need to be weather aware today! Know your safe space, talk it over with your family. If a tornado warning is issued for your location, find the interior most room of your home away from windows and glass. If its a bathroom, get in the tub and place pillows on top of you. Many people have surivived tornado’s taking these simple precautions. Also, if you have bike helmets available, pass them out and wear them for extra protection.
Early Morning Model Data
Looking at the most recent model updates, we are now in the range of the HRRR and it paints a dangerous picture for the western portion of NC this afternoon. If you look below, you can see the 2-5km updraft helicity tracks for this afternoon. These are possible tracks for supercells this afternoon. This is just to give you an idea of how numerous the storms will be this afternoon, and to show that extreme instability will be present.
Also, here is the simulated radar for this afternoon per the most recent HRRR. You can see that several rounds of storms will be possible this afternoon around WNC. The cells this afternoon will have the potential to go severe, so we will have two rounds of storms that could possibly be severe. I will do my best to keep an eye on the radar and go live if necessary.
Flash Flooding Will Be Possible
With rainfall already this morning around WNC, and multiple rounds of storms later.. I expect to see flash flooding this afternoon in various locations throughout WNC. Storms could drop large hail in isolated locations, and that will only further any flash flooding threat. Below is the precipitation totals from the HRRR through this evening. Well over an inch of rainfall is expected for many, with some 2”+ totals likely along the Blue Ridge Escarpment.
Backside Higher Elevation Snow Showers?
There is a possibility for some higher elevation snow showers on the backside of this system, but that will mainly be above 4500’ on the NC/TN border. Some flurries cannot be ruled out around Asheville, but thats about it. Winds will get up on the backside of this system as moisture is strained out, some elevations above 4500’ could see accumulation. Below you can see those snow showers on the 3km NAM. So a very dynamic system, but I will be tracking it fully so stay tuned and check in for a live update on the AshevilleWX App or Facebook around 11am.