Confidence in the Christmas forecast continues to increase, with only minor adjustments to the timing of our next cold front.
Temperatures warm significantly across the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry heading into the weekend. High temperatures will exceed 80° in a few spots Saturday afternoon. A gusty southwesterly wind is also expected during the afternoon.
The warmth, however, comes ahead of the next strong cold front.
The leading edge of chillier air is forecast to push into northwestern Georgia Saturday afternoon, approaching the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry early Sunday. A few showers may accompany the front. Coverage remains isolated to widely scattered.
Christmas Eve will not be a washout.
Cooler air gradually filters in Sunday evening as winds turn northerly.
Christmas morning temperatures may be a shock to the system; upper 30s to upper 40s with a breeze. Winds chills bottom-out in the upper 20s to mid-30s between 5 and 8 a.m. Christmas afternoon temperatures struggle to reach 60° in most areas under a mostly sunny sky.
The breeze adds to the chilly feel through the afternoon.
Plan for a colder Christmas night with temperatures quickly cooling back into the 40s after sunset; bottoming out in the 30s to lower 40s Tuesday morning. An inland light freeze is possible Tuesday morning.
After a gradual warm-up , the overall weather pattern favors another significant cold front as we prepare to celebrate the new year.
We'll continue to fine tune the forecast and relay any adjustments on TV, at wtoc.com and in the WTOC Weather App.