FLASH FLOOD WATCH THIS AFTERNOON AND EVENING BLUE RIDGE, ROANOKE VALLEY AND WEST. Latest from National Weather Service-Blacksburg.
There’s certainly nothing revolutionary about Southwest Virginia’s weather expectations the next 3 days — warm (borderline hot), sticky and scattered thunderstorms, some of which could produce heavy rain. Sunday was another chapter in that, as a few storms dumped torrential rains — Daleville in Botetourt County was one of the spots hit by some flooding Sunday afternoon — while others missed entirely or just got sprinkles — most of the rest of the Roanoke Valley. Temperatures were not quite as hot — Roanoke broke a string of 6 straight 90-degree days (none above 94) with a high of 88, while Blacksburg only made 81 — and likely will be similarly not-quite-as-hot the next few days, due to more clouds and the weakening/relocation of the big Bermuda high that brought the heat wave to the Northeast that we caught the edge of. Typical of what we have been talking about, a cold front is hanging up farther north than many models wanted to bring it, staying to our north and stalling. Still, its proximity and a series of disturbances moving near it, plus daytime heating and the ever-present thick humidity, will continue to produce rounds of showers and storms during at least the first 3 days of this week. As has been the case for weeks, some of you will get a deluge of an inch or 2 or maybe 3 in an hour, while others just hear distant thunder and see little or no rain, with many somewhere in between. (It probably won’t be nearly as smoothly colored near an inch over us as the Weather Prediction Center’s map for the next 3 days is.) There is no really good way to predict exactly where the heavier downpours (or any localized severe microburst winds) will be, just watch the radar and the sky and be aware that if it’s rumbling close, a locally flooding downpour and possibly some tree-toppling wind gusts are possible.
As for late week, the forecast models continue to want to push a stronger cold front far enough south for a couple of days of somewhat cooler/drier weather that would coincide with the thousands-strong outdoor music festival known as FloydFest (actually just barely in Patrick County, not far from Rocky Knob on the Blue Ridge Parkway). Fronts are notorious for not making it as far south as models want to push them, so take it with a grain of salt. In any event, Thursday and Sunday look most suspect for possible showers and thunderstorms in the late week/weekend period.