Toasty weekend temps, high fire danger

Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Hot temperatures, for late-April-standards, are in the forecast this weekend before a cool down next week.

High pressure still dominates Arizona's weather pattern. This will allow daytime highs to rise nearly 10 degrees above normal for this time of the year. Phoenix will be close to 100 Saturday afternoon with plentiful sunshine and occasional breeziness.

Moisture across eastern Arizona will help produce a few high-based thunderstorms. Unfortunately, they will not produce rain, so erratic winds are adding to a high fire danger. Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches have been issued by the National Weather Service both Saturday and Sunday for all of northern and central Arizona.

Southwest wind gusts of 35 to 50 mph are possible each afternoon and evening, combined with low humidity down to five percent. Ninety-three percent of Arizona is under severe drought or greater, so there's a lot of dry fuel for explosive wildfires.

By next Monday, a low pressure system tracking into Arizona from the northwest will stall across the state, increase winds, increase clouds, drop temperatures, and bring a chance of Valley rain and mountain snow by Tuesday evening.

In Phoenix, look for sunny skies and a high of 97 Saturday, mostly sunny with a high of 92 Sunday, partly sunny and breezy Monday with a high of 86, and partly cloudy and breezy with a high of 81 Tuesday. There's a 30 percent chance of showers Tuesday night. Highs drop to the mid 70s for Phoenix by Wednesday, but return to the 90s by next Friday.

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