Party-goers headed to Monday evening’s First Night celebration or other outdoor events won’t have to worry about rain or excessive cold, but the new year will get off to a wet and chilly start in the Charlotte region.
Temperatures plummeted into the low and mid 20s Monday morning across the area, with an unofficial low of 24 degrees at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport.
It was even colder in places to the north and east, where the skies stayed mostly clear overnight. That included a low of 22 degrees in Albemarle, and some reports of temperatures near 20 degrees in Stanly, Cabarrus and Rowan counties.
The cold air won’t return tonight.
Clouds are increasing on this final day of 2012, as a low pressure system moves toward the Charlotte region from the west. Temperatures are expected to reach the low 50s Monday afternoon, and readings will be in the range of 45 to 50 degrees during New Years Eve celebrations this evening.
The midnight temperature in Charlotte is expected to be near 44 degrees.
Meteorologists say rain won’t arrive until around daybreak Tuesday.
The rain is expected to fall much of the day, and temperatures are not forecast to climb above the upper 40s in the Charlotte region. Wednesday is forecast to be dry, with clouds and some sunshine, and highs near 50 degrees.
Another cloudy and chilly day is forecast Thursday. Low pressure will move from the Gulf of Mexico across northern Florida, and the computer models indicate precipitation probably will remain south of the Charlotte area. But if precipitation falls in the region, meteorologists say it could be in the form of snow in the mountains.
A return to drier conditions is forecast for the weekend.