By Earth Networks Meteorologist, Rebecca Huff
Low pressure sliding across the Tennessee Valley is the culprit for the soggy skies that will be seen from eastern Texas through coastal New England. Not to be outdone, spring thunderstorms will rumble through; the strongest storms will eye cities like Birmingham, Ala., as well as Columbus, Ga., and downtown Atlanta.
The warmest weather will be found along the Gulf Coast into the Southeast with highs in the 70s and 80s while cooler 50s and 60s spread from the southern Mid-Atlantic into the lower Ohio Valley. Colder 40s will be brought south from Canada into the lower Great Lakes through coastal New England.
A quick-moving disturbance will swing through the Dakotas and High Plains today, bringing a mix of rain and snow. Highs across the Dakotas will be coolest in the 30s while 40s and 50s spread across the High Plains. The west central Plains will also see a few scattered showers show up after lunch. Highs here will be in the mild low-to-mid 50s.
A cold front drifting onshore in the western U.S. will bring rain to northern California, the northern Great Basin and the Pacific Northwest with mountain snow bring found in the Cascades and northern Sierra Nevada. While the lower elevations reach the cool 50s, the mountaintops will chill out in the 30s and 40s.
Southern California, the Southwest and the central and southern Rockies have high pressure on tap to kick off the workweek. Here highs will be in the mild 70s and even 80s in the Desert Southwest while the higher elevations of the Southwest and Rockies see highs in the 60s.
High pressure will bring quiet skies to the upper Great Lakes and Midwest this afternoon. Keep those jackets handy as highs only head into the 30s and 40s.
The first Monday of spring will usher plenty of stormy weather into portions of the South.
A low pressure system currently located in the middle Mississippi Valley will continue to crawl eastward today, dragging a cold front across the Deep South. Warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico will feed northward and will clash with the cooler, drier air currently in place across the Southeast. This will ignite strong to severe thunderstorms from southeastern Texas to western Georgia this afternoon through this evening.
Cities including Birmingham, Montgomery and Tuscaloosa, Ala., and Columbus, Ga., will be the spots that will have the highest chance of thunderstorms capable of producing wind gusts greater than 57 mph and hail larger than an inch in diameter today. Houston, New Orleans, Mobile, Ala., Chattanooga, Tenn., and Atlanta could also see a few strong thunderstorms.
Very heavy rain will accompany the more robust thunderstorms, so localized flooding is possible. Remember, if you encounter a water-covered roadway, be sure to “Turn Around, Don’t Drown” because the water could be much deeper than it appears.
The same system delivered strong thunderstorms to the southern Plains and the lower and middle Mississippi Valley on Sunday. Cities from northeastern Texas to southern Illinois reported large hail and a tornado was reported to the south of St. Louis.