In the Atlantic Basin, Ophelia strengthened into the fourth Hurricane of the 2011 Hurricane Season on Thursday. However, its track still keeps it moving northward, well away from Tampa Bay and the US. Bermuda and Newfoundland seem to be the most likely areas to be affected by the system. Of more concern is Tropical Storm Philippe. Early tracks had the system take a sharp northerly turn, and even the later tracks that moved it on a westward path weakened the storm before it could impact land. However, new tracks move Philippe westward, and even southwestward, keeping it organized at Tropical Storm status for the next five days. This system may need to be monitored next week. For more information, please visit the National Hurricane Center at: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/, and the AccuWeather Hurricane Center at: http://hurricane.accuweather.com/hurricane/index.asp. Also, Matt Baraonwski at Storm Central will be monitoring the system on his website: http://centralstorm.wordpress.com.
A pleasant Thursday
While a lone shower developed near Sarasota around afternoon, almost all of Tampa Bay remained dry and partly cloudy most of the day Thursday. None of the reporting stations observed any precipitation. Hourly high temperatures ranged from 87 in St. Petersburg up to 94 at MacDill. Humidity levels began to drop a little in the afternoon, as dew points in Tampa dropped to the mid 60s. This is a precursor of the significant changes ahead for the weekend.
A taste of Fall for the weekend
Friday will be quite similar to Thursday. After morning lows of 72-76, afternoon highs will reach the 87-93 range under partly cloudy skies. Thunderstorm coverage will remain around 20%. However, rather dramatic changes arrive starting Friday night and Saturday morning. Saturday morning will start off 65-70, which should be the first low below 70 degrees Tampahas seen since the Spring. Highs will only reach 80-85 under mostly sunny skies and no chance of thunderstorms. Humidity will be quite low as well. Sunday morning will be even cooler, with lows of 58 inland to 68 at the immediate coast. Highs on Sunday again will be 80-85 under mostly sunny skies. There is no chance of precipitation on Sunday, and humidity will remain low. For more detailed weather information, visit the local National Weather Service website at: http://www.srh.noaa.gov/tbw/, and the Storm Team 8 Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/StormTeam8WFLA.
Quick shout out to the Rays
The Tampa Bay Weather Examiner would like to congratulate the Tampa Bay Rays on an incredible comeback for both the month of September (nine games behind the Boston Red Sox at the beginning of the month) and against the New York Yankees on Wednesday night (behind 7-0 in the 8th inning, and coming back to win 8-7 in 12 innings). The Rays are now Wild Card Winners for the American League. The series against the Texas Rangers begins Friday at 5:07 Tampa time, followed by a Saturday night game at 7:07 Tampa time. The first home game at Tropicana Field will be Monday afternoon at 5:07. Let’s Go Rays!