It’s been a cool March so far for the Southeast due to cold air flowing in from the north while warm, moist air has been commonplace in the Southern Plains. That trend will continue overall into next week for this part of the country. Warm air will sneak into the Southeast at times, making it feel like spring, but then as another storm moves in this weekend, that will cool temperatures back down.
This Thursday, temperatures across the Southeast will be as cold as 15 degrees below average, especially in the Carolinas, while the Southern Plains experiences warmer than normal temperatures. High temperatures on Thursday will surge to levels as much as 20-30 degrees above the typical high temperature for this time of the year. This will translate to actual highs in the 50s, 60s, and 70s for most areas in the Southeast. In the Southern Plains, highs will reach the 70s, 80s, and even 90s. We wouldn’t be surprised if a location or two tops off at 100 degrees in western Texas.
Then on Friday, warmer air will expand eastward. That will allow for above average temperatures to reach as far east as Mississippi and Alabama. An even larger area in the Southern Plains will experience temperatures 25-30 degrees above normal while the eastern Southeast is still up to 10 degrees below average. Actual high temperatures in the Southern Plains will top off into the 80s and 90s for many in the Southern Plains. In the Southeast, highs will range from the 60s to 70s for the majority of areas. It will only get into the 50s as you go up in elevation in the Appalachians.
Finally it will turn warm for a brief time this weekend in the Southeast. Warmer temperatures will invade most of the region, moving into Georgia, western South Carolina, and the Florida Panhandle. The Carolinas, unfortunately, will remain on the cooler side but it won’t be too far off from average. Actual high temperatures in the Southeast are forecast to be in the 70s for most. It will get into the 80s toward the Gulf Coast. In the Southern Plains, temperatures will still be up to 15-25 degrees above average for a large region. That will allow for highs in the 80s and 90s to persist.
By Sunday, cooler temperatures due to a wedge will return back to eastern Georgia. Otherwise, temperatures will remain quite similar as on Saturday with temperatures generally up to 5-10 degrees above average in the Southeast and up to 15-25 degrees above average in the Southern Plains.
Looking ahead to next week, the heat will relax across the Southern Plains by midweek with temperatures ranging from 10 degrees below average to 10 degrees above average. Simultaneously, slightly warmer than average temperatures will be found across much of the East through the end of the week.