High pressure is back in control across the southeastern United States, and temperatures are falling. Winds are beginning to dwindle across Florida and have come to a calm across the rest of the southeast where temperatures are already in the 30s. A combination of very dry air and calm winds will combine tonight for a widespread freeze across the deep south, but I do not think the freezing line will push all that far into Florida. For most Floridians, this will not be the perfect radiational cooling event because of the northeasterly winds that continue to come in from the Atlantic. I do think that 30s will be widespread from Levy county north and west. I think that all of the counties on the east coast of Florida including Duval and Nassau counties will be safe from a freeze because of the easterly winds coming from the relatively warm waters of the Atlantic. Elsewhere in the state, lows will be in the 50s and 60s with winds of 5-10 mph, except right along the east coast where winds could reach 15 mph. Clouds will be sticking around in central and south Florida because of the area of low pressure that slid through the area early this morning and yesterday. That was not the end of that unsettled weather for south Florida. Rain chances (20-30%) will be sticking around as the area of low pressure hovers in the eastern Bahamas and western Atlantic. The one good thing about the showers…they will keep temperatures up.
I think that the normally colder locations such as Crestview and Bonifay will fall to freezing or slightly lower. I also think that Marianna and Quincy will get close to freezing if the winds fall flat before sunrise. Frost will be limited to locations north of I-10, and it will be very patchy in nature because of the winds. Wind generally makes it hard for particles of water to stick to surfaces and freeze.
In any event, you will want an extra layer or two and a windbreaker when you head out in the morning.
The Weekend Ahead:
Although I cannot promise a warm up, I can promise that it will warm up. Temperatures will be about 5-8 degrees warmer than it was this afternoon, but morning lows will stay at or below 40 degrees each morning in north Florida, and in the 40s and 50s elsewhere in interior Florida. Along the immediate west coast and the east coast lows will be staying in the 60s because of the added moisture.
MLK Jr Day looks like it will be clear for about 90% of the sunshine state with the only exceptions being extreme southern Florida and the Keys where the added moisture will amount to a few extra clouds and a few isolated showers. Temperatures will be in the 60s north and 70s south during the afternoon. The real cold air comes in Monday night as a dry cold front from Canada slides through.
Here is what the 3-day weekend forecast looks like for Tallahassee: