Raleigh, N.C. — Rain showers, cold temperatures and gray skies that made Thursday "flat-out miserable" are expected to clear by Friday, making way for sunny skies in time for the WRAL Raleigh Christmas Parade, said WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel.
A low pressure system and weak upper-level disturbance tracked across the Southeast Thursday, soaking central and eastern North Carolina with intermittent, sometimes heavy showers.
"The rain made it all way up into southern Virginia, and there were times today when it was just flat-out miserable out there – no question about it," Fishel said.
Temperatures started in the mid-30s early Thursday and topped out around 49 degrees in Raleigh. Breezy conditions made it feel even colder, said WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner.
The rain's intensity had tapered off by 5 p.m. as showers swept north and east, moving offshore into the Atlantic Ocean and paving the way for some sunshine on the final day of the work week.
Temperatures should top out in the mid-50s Friday afternoon with plenty of warm sunshine before falling back into the 30s.
Another disturbance will follow the same path up the East Coast over the weekend, possibly bringing another round of showers to the Triangle by as early as Saturday evening.
"The timing is what we're watching right now," Gardner said. "Sunday and Monday look like they will be dreary, but as of now, the weather early in the day Saturday for the Christmas Parade should hold up."
A steady warm-up begins next week, with temperatures climbing to 60 degrees in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.