On this Memorial Day weekend, July has made an early appearance in the Heartland. With afternoon highs in the 90s (F) and overnight lows in the 70s, it feels like mid summer; were it not for the plentiful moisture still in the soil, the vegetation would be wilting in the intense heat, but, in this case, the verdant face of May persists.
This early heat wave is courtesy of a high pressure ridge over the southeastern U.S.; beneath this dome, air is sinking and heating up, retarding cloud formation, while, along its outer edge, thunderstorms will ignite across the Upper Midwest. One crop of storms, off the coast of South Carolina, has developed into Tropical Storm Beryl, which will move WSW along the rim of the dome over the next 24 hours, bringing heavy, much-needed rain to southern Georgia and northern Florida.
The high pressure ridge should stay in place through the holiday weekend and will then drift to the east, allowing cooler and drier air to filter in from the northwest. Until then, we'll endure heat and humidity more typical of July and the Southeastern Coast will receive an early taste of the hurricane season (which officially begins on June 1). Here's hoping that a premature summer ushers in an early autumn!