After a couple more warm (if not cloudless) days, we do have a crack at getting a shower or two coming through the region late in the week. For Tuesday, a warm ridge of high pressure will combine with overrunning moisture to give us a warm (mid-80s) and cloudy Tuesday, a pattern that will be repeated Wednesday. On Thursday, a weak trough of low pressure will move through bringing a one-in-three chance of some rain, while cooling our temperatures to a more seasonable mid-70s. Temperatures will gradually warm back to the low 80s as we head into the weekend.
I’ve talked in the past about how overnight low temperatures are usually much warmer on cloudy nights compared to clear ones. Some use an analogy of the clouds being like a blanket.
While that’s a nice image that at first glance makes some sense, it’s not an analogy that I am particularly fond of. A cloud blocking radiational cooling is not the same thing as what’s going on with a blanket. A blanket traps body heat by acting as a thermal insulator. Clouds are different. I’ll explain tomorrow.