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Boston Weather: 53.0°F | Thunderstorm Heavy Rain and Breezy

Weather: All Eyes on Edouard


All Eyes on Edouard

By Gerard Roe
Staff Meteorologist

There is currently a solid high-pressure anticyclone building across the eastern half of the country. In the short term, this produces clear, sunny skies and dry air. However, we may come to rue its presence by the end of the Labor Day weekend. Typically, hurricanes head off from Africa in a west-northwest direction. Normally, when the hurricane then begins to work its way out of the tropics, it comes under the influence of the westerly jet stream which turns it away from the coast and causes it to recurve out towards mid-ocean.

Because hurricanes rely on warmer waters to supply them with latent heat energy, this recurving toward the colder northern waters causes a gradual diminution of their their intensity. However, the anticyclonic clockwise circulation around a high-pressure ridge lying to the northwest of the hurricane will tend to halt its northward progress and steer it closer to the coast.

As of Thursday night, the official National Hurricane Center forecast has the track leaving the storm 500 miles (800 km) due south of us on Sunday lunchtime, with peak winds of 120 mph (192 kmh) and moving on a northward course at about 10 mph (16 kmh). Because the twists and turns of hurricane tracks are notoriously hard to predict, this very powerful storm bears close watching over the holiday weekend - all in all, a potentially grim outlook. It is not even as though the danger ends with Edouard; some forecast models have Hurricane Fran slamming into the east coast (the Carolinas) by Monday night.

Friday: Mostly sunny skies. Moderate winds from the north or northwest, keeping temperatures down to a high of 74F (23C). Very pleasant.

Friday night: Mostly clear, meaning strong radiational cooling, causing some patchy fog. Low 59F (15C).

Saturday: Again pleasant, with clear blue skies expected, winds light and easterly. A good day to be out. However, 12 foot (3.5 meter) coastal swells from Edouard's churning of the Atlantic mean any and all ocean sports should be considered extremely hazardous. High 76F (24C). Low 62F (17C).

Sunday: Getting trickier due to possible influence of Edouard. Barring major coastal catastrophes, some clouds coming in off the ocean, bringing with them a chance for rain. Southeasterly winds pushing temperatures up toward 80F (27C). Low 64F (18C).

Outlook: It would be a foolish man who tried to predict detail beyond Sunday, but there is the potential for high winds, strong rain, and flooding.