Some Dryness Appearing in Western NC, SC

Well, if you hadn’t noticed the calendar, you can certainly tell by the temperatures we are into fall. And if this seems somewhat familiar to you, well, there’s a reason for that. I’m Mike Davis, and I’m talking with climatologist Corey Davis. This pattern that we’re seeing right now, these cooler temperatures and fall-like weather reminiscent of a year ago, seems very similar, doesn’t it?

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Yeah, it really is Mike. In fact, there’s more similarities than just the temperatures of course that is the big one. And when we think back to last year, mid- to late-September, we started seeing that nice fall like weather. We had the same thing this year. But also, we look at having a named tropical storm come through the eastern part of North Carolina last year was Ian, this year was Ophelia. And then we look at the drought now by the beginning of October, we started to see some dry spots pop up mainly across the western part of the Carolinas. And we’re seeing the same thing this week. In fact, there are now some pockets of moderate drought coming up in western North and South Carolina, between places like Asheville and Greenville, Spartanburg. So again, that that is one of the things that we’re watching this fall that we dealt with last year as well is as nice as the temperatures are. We’re not seeing a lot of rainfall in this pattern. That’s something that we do need a little bit more of to keep these areas from slipping too deep into the drought.

That is true. Now as you look over in the tropics right now, we’re still of course in hurricane season. Do you see any systems out there that could possibly break this pattern and bring us some rain?

Well, not directly, Mike. Right now, there’s only one system in the Atlantic and that’s tropical storm Phillipe. We’re talking about it again this week. We talked it about over the last couple of weeks. It’s just the storm that seems like it won’t go away. It’s been moving very slowly across the Atlantic. Finally, over the next day or two, it’s supposed to start moving a little bit further north, eventually looks like it may hit the northeastern United States and the Canadian Maritimes as a remnant system. But when Phillipe is gone, there’s really no more systems out there. Of course, we’ve still got almost two months left in the official hurricane season. So that doesn’t mean we’re done with storms for the year. But one thing we may watch, especially over the next few weeks to a month, is the Gulf of Mexico. That’s where the warmest water is right now. That’s where historically we tend to see more of our late season storms forming. And if there’s any good news about that type of pattern, it’s that those storms forming in the Gulf oftentimes tend to come up through the western part of the Carolinas. We think about Hurricane Nicole last year. That’s a very similar track to what it did. So we would probably not mind a storm like that. Again, just seeing some of the rainfall deficits that we built up so far this fall.