A drying trend is predicted later this week, but forecasters say the Rock Hill area and the rest of the Southeast could have a wet Memorial Day weekend.
Computers have shown for several days that some type of tropical system will form later this week near Florida, spreading moisture northward this weekend.
Given the wet conditions across the Southeast, National Weather Service meteorologist Trish Palmer says, the rainy forecast “could be problematic” for people planning trips to the beaches or mountains, or planning outdoor activities closer to home.
But first, the Rock Hill area will need to escape from the current wet pattern, which began nearly a week ago. During that time, repeated rounds of showers and thunderstorms have dropped more than 1.7 inches of rain at the Rock Hill airport.
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Rainfall totals have been much heavier elsewhere in the Carolinas. For example, an automated gauge south of Asheville, N.C., shows 8.77 inches of rain since last Tuesday. Over the weekend, heavy rain caused mudslides and flooding at several spots in the North Carolina foothills and mountains.
Meteorologists say shower and thunderstorm chances will remain in the forecast through Wednesday, with Tuesday bringing the highest chance of precipitation.
By later Thursday and Friday, a somewhat-drier pattern is expected, with what Palmer describes as “summertime” thunderstorm development in the afternoon and evening. But much of the time will be dry both days, she says.
“Then things get complicated,” Palmer says.
One of the main computer models used by forecasters shows a tropical low pressure system affecting Florida on Saturday, then moving toward the Carolinas on Sunday. The other key model shows the same system near the Louisiana-Mississippi border over the weekend.
“Whatever happens with the tropical system, the problem is that global models are all pointing to a very wet period starting this weekend and going through the end of the forecast period (next Monday),” Palmer adds.
Temperatures will be warm throughout the period, with daily highs in the low 80s on the rainier days and the mid 80s when sunshine can break through. Overnight lows for the next week are predicted to be above average.