North Georgia is only a week into spring, and already the region is leaving behind seasonable weather for a taste of summertime.
Temperatures in the upper 80s Friday will likely break the record of 86 degrees set in 1994, according to Channel 2 Action News. At nearly 20 degrees above average, a projected high of 87 degrees in Atlanta will feel more like June than late March.
“We've got a beautiful day in the forecast,” Channel 2 meteorologist Brian Monahan said. “It’s been a great second half of the week, hasn't it? And it’s going to be a great finish to the week today.”
A light jacket is all you need for morning lows in the 50s and low 60s, he said. By the afternoon, layers won’t be necessary as temperatures start to climb.
Monahan said North Georgia’s mild streak will continue with a string of days perfect for enjoying the outdoors.
Conditions are ideal Friday and Saturday, he said. Sunday takes a step back with a 40% chance of rain.
“I think there's going to be some rain around, but you are going to have some opportunities to get outside Sunday,” he said.
Showers will begin approaching North Georgia on Saturday night and start to filter in Sunday morning, according to Channel 2. By Monday, Monahan said the region will be back out in the sunshine.
The downside to all this sunshine and warm weather? Pollen counts are sky high.
Thursday saw the highest pollen count so far this year at 3,697 particles per cubic meter of air. Friday’s count is even higher at 5,847.
“If your allergies have kicked in, here's the reason why,” Monahan said.
Tree pollen like oak, pine, maple, sweet gum and sycamore are the top contributors to Friday’s count, according to Atlanta Allergy and Asthma, the organization that tracks the daily pollen count. Grass pollen and mold, which have been high in recent days, are both down.
Grass pollen is in the medium range, while mold is low, according to the organization.
For allergy sufferers, Monahan said the best time to get outside is before dawn.
“Once the sun comes up through early afternoon, the pollen really starts to peak, and you get another peak in the early part of the evening as all the pollen falls to the ground,” he said. “Rain would help knock the pollen out of the sky, and we'll get some of that on Sunday.”
All of metro Atlanta’s interstates remain lighter than normal Friday morning except for one, according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center.
There are still delays on I-20 through Carroll County after an injury crash shut down the eastbound lanes for several hours Friday morning. The crash investigation cleared at 7:30 a.m. and the lanes reopened at Liberty Road, the Traffic Center reported.
Until traffic recovers, drivers can continue to use U.S. 78 as an alternate and rejoin I-20 at Post Road, according to the Traffic Center.
» For a detailed forecast, visit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution weather page.
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