Early Friday Update: Freeze Warnings are now in effect early Saturday for the Midlands, Upstate, and northwestern parts of the Pee Dee. Frost advisories are in place in Williamsburg County and parts of Georgetown and Horry Counties.
A large pattern change is expected to bring several opportunities for frost and freezing temperatures to the state this weekend and next week.
So far this fall, temperatures have been above average at all official climate sites across the state. A large ridge of high pressure over the western Atlantic Ocean this fall, combined with longer-term climate trends, have been primarily responsible for the very warm October. Nearly all of the most reliable computer models are forecasting this ridge to break down and be replaced by a trough over the eastern United States in the coming week. This will open the door for several cold fronts to pass through the state.
The first front will pass through late Thursday into early Friday morning. Behind it, a freeze is likely over many parts of the Upstate of Midlands early Saturday morning. Frost is possible as far south as the Lowcountry. Another, even stronger front appears likely to pass through the entire state on Tuesday or Tuesday night. Odds for widespread freezing temperatures are increasing behind this front on either Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday mornings. It is possible portions of the state will see freezing temperatures all three mornings.
Forecasters say those with tender vegetation should be prepared to cover plants or bring them inside.