State News

Triangle temps take a sudden turn south

Posted October 27, 2008

— The Triangle could see the first freeze of the season later on this week as a result of a cold front that significantly cooled the air Monday afternoon.

WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said the narrow band of clouds that pushed east from the mountains Monday brought brisk winds and a few reports of sleet to central North Carolina.

Raleigh-Durham International Airport reported 45 degrees just after 5 p.m. after the official high temperature hit 60 degrees at about noon.

Those clouds have mostly moved on, leaving clear skies and cold temperatures in the forecasts.

"As we head toward tomorrow, we are right in the core of the trough," Fishel said. Tuesday will be windy and chilly, warming only into the low 50s.

Freeze watches were posted for Monday night and Tuesday morning for several counties in the western half of the Triangle.

Viewers in Alamance, Person and Granville counties reported spotty sleet Monday afternoon. Winds picked up throughout the afternoon, pushing the cold air down from the mountains of western North Carolina.

"This is one of those rare cases where a system can cross the mountains and survive with any precipitation at all," Fishel said.

Usually, weather systems sink east of the mountains, Fishel said. "This system is so strong it is overcoming that."

Despite cloudy skies and some scattered reports of sleet, Monday's conditions were more water cooler than weather event, Fishel said.

In the western part of the state, the National Weather Service predicted a chance of snowfall and rain after midnight with lows around 30.

Forecasters also called for snow showers Tuesday before 11 a.m., followed by rain. Accumulations are expected to be less than a half-inch.

Less than a half-inch of snow accumulation was expected near the Tennessee border. Winds are likely to be up to 20 mph.

At Cataloochee Ski Area, officials started making snow Monday morning and planned to open the resort early Tuesday afternoon. That would be the earliest opening date ever for Cataloochee.

In Raleigh, cooler-than-normal conditions will prevail for the next few days, before a warmup later in the week.


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  • jr1brown Oct 27, 2008

    OriginalHeel: Great post! hahaha!!! And for all you Yankees who moved here because of the nice weather, if you want snow and a cold winter get on back up north because you know you just want this place to turn into the miserable cess pools youse guys moved from!

  • OriginalTarHeel Oct 27, 2008

    Sleet in October. What next? The wolfpack win another football game?

  • hpr641 Oct 27, 2008

    Where's Al Gore when you really need him?

  • blueice Oct 27, 2008

    I just got off the phone with my other half and he is coming out of Greenville, and he said it is sleeting bad. I hope this means we are in for a White winter a head of us:)

  • meatwrapper Oct 27, 2008

    today @ 1:00pm sleet and freezing rain was falling in halifax va.,, way too soon for freezing weather !!!

  • gr Oct 27, 2008

    Yes I was here in the big ice storm took me 6 hrs to drive from the coast back in the mess that evening...nasty and yes they missed it. Have lived in NC all my life and we just dont seem to have the equipment to deal with snow. Nothing can deal with ice except sun. Just seems it gets blown out of proportion a lot to me, always has, I usually just keep going.

  • GulfWarVet Oct 27, 2008

    wind picked up and it went to total frozen precip there for a moment... now it's just a few 3/16" here and there.

  • 007KnightRider Oct 27, 2008

    gr - I totally understand what you are saying.

    But if you were here in 2000-2001 you would have a different take on things. First off meteorologist were only predicting a couple of inches but it turned out to be a 2 - 3 ft snow storm that caught everyone by surprise even the meteorologist were surprised. Ever since then when there is a hint of snow people revert to 2000-2001.

  • princessdukedaisey Oct 27, 2008

    Sleeting here in Wendell. Hope this is just the beginning of a cold...snowy...winter. I know...I know...I'll keep dreaming!

  • gr Oct 27, 2008

    what we get here basically amounts to other places, people just keep going on no different than rain...and yes I know they have snow plows and treat the roads. It is not a big deal in most places..people go so far overboard about it here. But it is sorta chilly out this pm.