Forecast: Dry spell to continue for a while in metro Detroit

What about a White Christmas?


DETROIT – As I mentioned yesterday, we're sitting in the Catbird Seat between that big storm to our east and the big storm lashing the west coast.

Even though we're far away from the New England storm, it actually impacted our weather (as expected) by pushing the high clouds we saw today westward all the way to Michigan. Meanwhile, the west coast storm will move east and reach us Monday night and Tuesday, but it'll lose a lot of its punch as it moves across the continent.

Tonight will feature alternating partly cloudy and mostly clear skies, with lows in the low to mid 20s. Northwest wind at 8 to 13 mph.

Partly cloudy on Friday, with highs in the upper 30s. West wind at 5 to 10 mph.

Partly cloudy Friday night, with lows in the mid 20s.

The weekend forecast has actually become rather challenging. We'll have a nice big ridge of high pressure sliding right across Michigan, which normally is good news for a weekend. However, I've been watching the visible satellite images over the past couple of days -- and there has been a lot of cloud cover under that ridge. To keep this simple, there's quite a bit of low level moisture there and (as is usually the case) a temperature inversion under the ridge -- that means temperatures warming, instead of cooling, as you go aloft -- which put a "cap" or "lid" on the moisture and basically traps it. The upshot is that we'll get less sunshine than we'd probably like, although temperatures will still warm nicely. At this point, let's call Saturday partly cloudy, with highs in the low 40s.

Partly to mostly cloudy and milder Saturday night, with lows in the mid 30s.

Note: If we have any clear sky Saturday evening, remember that this is the peak night for the annual Geminid Meteor Shower. The Geminids are typically one of the best and most reliable of the annual meteor showers. This meteor shower is considered one of the best opportunities for younger viewers who don't stay up late, because it gets going around 9 or 10 p.m. local time. This year, the last quarter moon will rise around midnight, making the prime time for viewing the first half of the night. If the clouds hold off, we could possibly see 120 meteors per hour! By the way, in case you were wondering, those "shooting stars" are actually little bits of rock the size of a Grape Nuts cereal nugget, and burn up when they hit our atmosphere travelling at 22 miles per SECOND!

Cloudy on Sunday (in fact, it wouldn't be out of the question to see some spotty drizzle), with highs in the mid 40s.

Cloudy Sunday night, with lows in the upper 30s.

Mostly cloudy on Monday, with highs in the mid (possibly upper) 40s.

Rain develops late Monday night, with lows in the upper 30s.

Rain likely on Tuesday, possibly mixing with a couple of wet snowflakes late in the day. Highs in the low 40s.

Cloudy Tuesday night, with lows near 30.

Mostly cloudy on Wednesday, with highs in the mid 30s.

Partly cloudy on Thursday, with highs in the mid 30s.

I continue to watch the long range charts and, right now, I don't see any meaningful snow chances through Christmas.

Now, keep in mind that it doesn't take much of a jet stream shift to change this but, as of now, chances for a White Christmas appear diminished. On the bright side, that means no serious weather trouble for holiday shopping or travel!

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