LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - The forecast continues to move along quietly this week, and no real complaints about that as the sunshine and heat are the only factors for now. With temperatures starting off just a couple of degrees warmer this morning, the streak of pleasant nights is coming to an end as winds turn back onshore bringing in more humidity and not allowing temperatures to fall into the 50s for those areas that have experienced those temperatures thus far. Another day of sunshine will quickly warm up the temperatures by afternoon into the middle 80s with a few clouds forming thanks to the moisture rise.
Both this afternoon and Friday afternoon will carry a slim 10% chance of a pop-up shower or thunderstorm, just the first sign of change as the Gulf winds kick back in. A storm over the western United States will continue to track eastward and move over the Rockies and Plains states through Saturday, bringing rain and storms to Texas Saturday before arriving in Southwest Louisiana Sunday.
As the storm system gets closer to the area over the weekend, a few widely scattered afternoon storms will be the result on Saturday, although rain chances are only 30%. Saturday will be the better of our two weekend days. By Sunday, the front will slowly begin to push in and send more numerous showers and thunderstorms to our side of the state by the morning and into the afternoon. The front won’t budge our temperatures though as it fades and lifts out of the area Monday, begin replaced by high pressure from the east and a building ridge of upper level high pressure next week.
The main factors in our next week will be the building ridge of high pressure at the surface and aloft, capping the environment, limiting rain chances and compressing the air to allow for the heat to build even more-so each day next week. We’ll be working our way up to the first 90 degree day of 2019, likely occurring by late next week and weekend. The pattern looks to only get stronger by next week, with highs by next Saturday around 90 degrees and muggy lows at night in the 70s.
This extended dry period next week will allow river levels to continue to drop even more, and with Toledo Bend Reservoir already below 173 feet, continuing reductions in spillway operations at the dam will mean lowered levels along the Sabine River downstream by next week. In summary, Sunday will likely be the last day we see any significant rain for several days!
First Alert Meteorologist Ben Terry