Cooler air wedges in for our Wednesday; tracking soaking rain tonight

We stay dry during the daytime today, but the chance for rain will increase tonight as our next storm system approaches.

Wednesday's forecast (3/18/2020)
Wednesday's forecast (3/18/2020) (WSLS)

ROANOKE, Va. – After a warm-up and some peeks of sunshine Tuesday, we’re cooling back down and seeing extra clouds push into southwest Virginia for the midpoint of the week. Look for overcast skies through the day and temperatures only rising into the 50s in many areas.

Future Tracker 4 p.m. (3/18/2020)
Future Tracker 4 p.m. (3/18/2020) (WSLS)

The reason we’re cooler today is through a process called “cold air damming” or “the wedge.” Air flows clockwise around a center of high pressure to the north of us and “wedges” against the mountains, providing cloudy and cool weather locally.

Wedge Impacts (3/18/2020)
Wedge Impacts (3/18/2020) (WSLS)

Our next chance of rain isn’t far off as we expect a complex storm system to approach tonight and soak the area with showers. Our northern zones like the Highlands, Roanoke Valley and Lynchburg area will have the best chance for rain. Earliest arrival time appears to be 8 p.m. or so and most of the rain should be gone by Thursday’s early commute.

Future Tracker 2 a.m. (3/18/2020)
Future Tracker 2 a.m. (3/18/2020) (WSLS)

Once those showers exit, we’ll track more shower and storm activity Thursday afternoon/evening then Friday afternoon/evening, along with some warmer temperatures. Look for drier and cooler weather over the weekend.

7 day precipitation trend (3/18/2020)
7 day precipitation trend (3/18/2020) (WSLS)

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