“Well the weather outside is frightful, but inside it’s so delightful.” No truer words have been sung than that this second weekend of December, but not for the same reasons as described in such a musical holiday classic. Instead of frigid temps and blindingly white snow, our climate conundrum this Saturday is a bit more summer-like, with atypically warm temps, roaring winds, and a potential torrent of rain en route. Temps have been fairly stable these past 24 hours, ranging from a high of 49° to a low of 45°. Current conditions are cloudy under a light drizzle and in the mid 40s.
US 441 (Newfound Gap Rd) is temporarily closed on account of the rough-ridin’ weather conditions the region has on tap. There is no timetable for when it might reopen, but the expectation would be not until Sunday once the storms have since passed and the roads are properly assessed by NPS crews. We are currently in the middle of a High Wind Warning set to last until 4:00 PM, but even then strong breezes will persist all weekend. Today, the mountain will have to stand firm against sustained south winds of 45-55mph, with gusts upwards of 85mph (!!!!!!!!) now possible. We might be a bit more sheltered here at the lodge because of our northern perspective, but places like Cliff Tops and Myrtle Point are going to feel the true brunt of it. Once the line of storms hits, the mountain could bear witness to over an inch of rainfall.
One doesn’t have to look far to understand that these conditions are not to be taken lightly. Our hearts certainly go out to the fine folks of our northern Kentucky neighbors after last night’s unprecedented tornadic activity. Please stay safe and hunkered down until this mess clears out. We’re slated to enjoy a calmer and sunny Sunday, albeit much cooler after the cold front, but far more suitable for outdoor exploration.
Have a great weekend. Flying J