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Spotty storms Thursday; Saharan dust adds a little haze through the weekend

Summer takes it up a notch as heat, humidity and haze all increase this coming weekend.

Tracking Saharan dust - Friday
Tracking Saharan dust - Friday

ROANOKE, Va. – The front that brought storms to the area Tuesday will meander close by Thursday. This will bring a slight uptick in humidity levels and add to the chance for a few storms. These will develop first west of I-77 around Noon and move eastward in a span of 4-6 hours.

FutureTracker 3 p.m. Thursday
FutureTracker 3 p.m. Thursday

One or two storms may contain damaging wind gusts and/or hail. Otherwise, don’t expect a washout or severe weather outbreak Thursday. Once the front moves east, humidity levels come back down to more comfortable levels Thursday night and Friday.

Dew point trend through the weekend
Dew point trend through the weekend

A wind out of the west develops Friday and turns a little stronger Saturday. This will help to heat things up a bit more. We’ll be around 85-90° Friday afternoon and 86-92° Saturday afternoon, with hardly any storms around.

What We're Tracking - Saturday afternoon
What We're Tracking - Saturday afternoon

A front to the north will sag south, combining forces with the heat and humidity to set off scattered storms after 1 or 2 p.m. Sunday.

What We're Tracking - Sunday afternoon
What We're Tracking - Sunday afternoon

Where that front stalls next week will ultimately determine how wet we get. We’ll keep it warm and humid with the daily shot for heavy rain and thunderstorms through at least Wednesday.

SAHARAN DUST UPDATE

The big talking point in the weather world recently has been a plume of Saharan dust that’s made it into the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico. This happens multiple times per year, but this plume just happens to be thicker.

Some of that dust will make its way northward and close to our region by Friday. This should make for a nice sunset Friday evening and a nice sunrise the following morning.

Tracking Saharan dust - Friday
Tracking Saharan dust - Friday

Come Saturday, the front to our north should suppress the highest concentration of dust to our south. However, there should still be enough to cast more haze thousands of feet above us. This will once again lead to pretty colors around the time the sun comes up and goes down.

Tracking Saharan dust - Saturday
Tracking Saharan dust - Saturday

We expect a fairly similar situation by Sunday. The haze from the dust, combined with remnant storm clouds should once again give us the opportunity to capture some nice sunrises and sunsets.

Tracking Saharan dust - Sunday
Tracking Saharan dust - Sunday

If you happen to grab any pictures, please send them our way via Pin It.

However, any downpours could drag a small amount of dust to the surface. You may not see it, but it could make you sneeze and cough a bit. Reduced air quality will be possible all three days, but mainly for those of us with asthma, lung or heart problems.


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