A combination of weather systems is bringing unsettled conditions to eastern N.C. for the second half of this week along with elevated water levels soundside, before a strong cold front rolls through early Friday.
“The greatest threat continues to be severe weather in the form of damaging wind gusts, but minor coastal flooding, strong non-thunderstorm winds with isolated power outages, and minor river flooding are also expected,” said Shane Kearns, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service office in Newport.
A weak cold front will drop south and stall over the northern tier late today and this evening then lift back north tonight. Then a strong cold front will cross Thursday night and move offshore by Friday morning.
Before the main front passes, sustained southwest winds are expected to increase to over 30 mph with higher gusts, and a Wind Advisory has been issued starting Thursday evening.
The recent southerly flow that has brought milder weather the last several days has also pushed up water levels along the sounds, which could reach 2 feet above normal by Friday north of Hatteras. A Coastal Flood Advisory is in effect beginning Thursday night.
Wave heights on the sounds are also expected to run from 3 to 4 feet, with seas of between 15 to 20 feet offshore, and a Gale Watch has been posted for the coastal waters.
Low water levels may occur on the Neuse River, and eventually possibly the Pamlico River due to the long duration of strong southwesterly to westerly winds.
National Weather Service forecast for Nags Head as of Wednesday, 5 p.m.:
Tonight: A chance of showers, mainly after 1am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 52. Southeast wind 8 to 11 mph becoming southwest in the evening. Winds could gust as high as 17 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.
Thursday: A chance of showers, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 10am. Cloudy, with a high near 66. Breezy, with a south wind 16 to 25 mph, with gusts as high as 38 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
Thursday Night: Showers and possibly a thunderstorm. Some of the storms could produce heavy rainfall. Low around 56. Windy, with a south wind 23 to 28 mph becoming west 17 to 22 mph after midnight. Winds could gust as high as 44 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New rainfall amounts between 1 and 2 inches possible.
Friday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 58. Windy, with a southwest wind around 26 mph, with gusts as high as 38 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New precipitation amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.
Friday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 41. Breezy.
Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 49.
Saturday Night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 45. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 53.
Sunday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 43.
Monday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 56.
Monday Night: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 49.
Tuesday: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 61. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Tuesday Night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 54. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Wednesday: Partly sunny, with a high near 63.
This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.