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Will Weather Affect the US Open? Here's a Tournament Forecast

There are a few chances for showers and storms that could disrupt the U.S. Open this week, but overall conditions should be good for golf

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The U.S. Open has arrived in New England with all eyes of the golf world on The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts.

June in New England always begs the question of whether the weather will cooperate with outdoor plans, and this weekend is no exception.  The simple answer: for the most part the weather will cooperate. 

The forecast actually runs a higher risk of inaccuracy than usual heading into the Thursday and Friday timeframe to kick off the tournament play – thunderstorms the last few days where our weather is coming from in the Great Lakes, Midwest and Upper Ohio Valley have been fickle for forecasters, erupting hours ahead of schedule for some, and missing locations by a wide margin for others.  The reason for this decrease in predictability to our west has hinged on the trigger for thunderstorm development: disturbances aloft interacting with a steady flow of increasingly warm and humid air on the northern periphery of a large dome of hot weather across the heart of the Lower 48. 

Thursday and Friday, New England will find ourselves on that northern fringe, meaning our chance of showers and thunder increases overall, but now we need to answer the question of which disturbances will trigger showers and thunder, and we’ll hope for better reliability than has been observed to our west.

The first opportunity for showers expands from Western New England Wednesday evening and night to central and eastern New England Thursday morning, including Brookline and The Country Club with a chance of showers the first half of Thursday.  Likely to lack the energy needed for thunderstorm development, these showers should be relatively light and scattered in nature, coming to a close before lunch and leaving behind an afternoon of sun breaking through clouds and temperatures in the 70s. 

Thursday afternoon, thunderstorms will develop in Upstate New York and migrate east Thursday night at the same time deeper humidity is building into New England – a great combination to keep downpours and thunderstorms going, meaning the chance of overnight Thursday night storms is elevated for most of Southern New England, but the timing is such that most of the storms should be gone by early Friday morning.  Nonetheless, the job of delivering humidity to The Country Club will be complete, meaning Friday brings steamy humidity with temperatures nearing 90 degrees on the golf course before an approaching cold front results in towering clouds Friday afternoon that will develop into scattered downpours, then thunderheads, Friday middle to late afternoon into evening.  As with any thunderstorm event, the exact placement will be critical, but there’s no question the chance of thunder is elevated later in the day. 

The approaching cold front will swing through the Boston area Friday night, bringing a return to comfortable air for the weekend, which means Saturday and Sunday’s forecast looks great for golf, overall – highs in the 70s and lower humidity.  The only trick to the weekend setup is the jet stream level energy – high in the sky, several thousand feet above our heads – will still be left overhead and this will encourage building, puffy, fair weather “cumulus” clouds Saturday afternoon that very well may yield a few scattered light showers – a 20-30% chance of these over the Country Club, via our exclusive NBC Forecast System. 

Any Saturday afternoon showers would be scattered and unlikely to have a significant or prolonged impact on golf, and by Sunday the shower chance drops further as the energy aloft moves away from New England and pleasant air continues.

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