A Weak Cold Front Arrives Friday – Rain Diminishes By The Weekend
Thursday, 08 October 2015 19:46
The upper level disturbance that has been plaguing western Texas for the past several days is now beginning to retreat back to the west. Rain chances will continue overnight and into Friday, but will markedly decrease as we head into Saturday. Flash Flood watches across the region will remain in effect until early tomorrow morning. A weak cold front will drop south into the state on Friday and drag slightly cooler temps and some drier air along with it. The front will wash out south of I-20, but for areas north of the frontal boundary, temps should be warm, but still pleasant, for any outdoor activities you have planned.
Currently on the radar, a large area of rain extends from southwest Texas in the Del Rio area, over into the Big Bend region and up through the Permian Basin region and into the south rolling plains. This area of rain continues to move north/northeast, but its eastward propagation will be hindered by a drier and more stable airmass as you get into western north Texas. As rain chances north of I-20 diminish overnight, additional development is likely across over the Big Bend and Trans Pecos regions. A few storms could become strong to severe overnight with gusty winds and hail as the main threats.
Tomorrow, rain and storm chances again across the western half of the state, but we’ll likely see a bit less coverage than we saw today as the upper level disturbance continues to move away from the state.
Here’s a look at the temperature forecast for tonight, Friday and Saturday. Residual cloud cover and rain chances will continue to keep a lid on highs across the western half of the state during the day on Friday. Once the front arrives, it will knock temps down a few degrees behind it, but the most noticeable change will be the northerly winds and decreasing humidity levels across northern Texas. Looks like we’ll have plenty of sunshine and mild highs for the Texas/OU game at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas on Saturday! South of the front, temps will remain above seasonal averages. Looks like summer just wants to hang around a bit longer!
Latest Drought Monitor Shows Slight Improvement
Thursday, 27 August 2015 19:54
The latest weekly drought monitor was released today and it does show small improvements over last week’s report…especially for Johnson, Ellis, Navarro and Henderson counties just south of Dallas…but that’s likely to be short-lived. Mother nature was kind this past week and gave the panhandle a bit of a break, and brought additional beneficial rain across east Texas where drought conditions have been the worst. BUT…we still need more…especially in north central Texas where some areas have seen less than 1/10th of an inch in the past 30 days. My house in particular north of Dallas has not seen rain in well over 50 days, even with the storms that impacted the metroplex Tuesday afternoon. It’s been very hit or miss for many folks. Parts of central and southwest Texas…same thing! Bone dry once again with parched foliage just ready for something to spark a wildfire.
Unfortunately, the outlook isn’t much better for the next 7 days. Conditions are expected to remain mostly dry with high pressure remaining the dominant weather feature. The caveat to that will be the expected development of an upper level low over coastal Louisiana that’s expected to retrograde west across coastal Texas by early next week. This could bring the potential for 1/4 to 1/2 inches of rain across southeast and south central Texas…but that does little to help areas further north and in dire need of rain like yesterday. These types of upper level lows tend to be flaky, so I wouldn’t count on very much just yet. We’ll likely have to wait until the effects of El Nino kick in this fall before we see a return of consistent rainfall across the state.
Hot & Dry Conditions Continue through the Weekend
Saturday, 08 August 2015 08:13
One of my friends on facebook posted this morning that the sunrise in Dallas was like the Crematoria Sunrise from the movie Chronicles of Riddick. Most of our sci-fi movie fans will know exactly what scene he was referring to! At any rate, blazing hot temps and little to no rain will remain the theme this weekend. Heat Advisories will remain in effect through the weekend across all of north and northeast Texas and down into parts of central and west central Texas. A dome of high pressure is pretty much centered over the state and won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. A shift back west again is expected next week which may bring a tiny bit of heat relief, but that’s still many days away. A bit of a stronger southerly breeze today and humidity values dropping down into the 20s and 30s west of the I-35 corridor which will increase the chances for wildfires today, so we ask that everyone be very careful with anything that could cause a spark or flame.
We will of course be looking at highs in the 100s across most of the state this afternoon. Coastal areas will be slightly lower and in the 90s but it won’t feel that much better due to higher humidity values. Far western Texas and parts of the panhandle will also reach the 90s today. Rainfall will be scarce, but there are chances for isolated thunderstorms today in the Guadalupe and Davis Mountains and nearby plains this afternoon and evening. A few could be strong with gusty outflow winds and lightning as the main threats. Monsoonal moisture will be on the increase across western Texas the next few days will will keep chances for afternoon showers and storms in the forecast into early next week.
Here’s a look at simulated radar through 9pm tonight.
Heat Advisories in Place Across North Texas & DFW Area
Tuesday, 04 August 2015 19:02
As high pressure continues to build back east across the state, temps will be on the rise to dangerous levels by tomorrow and likely through the weekend. Some parts of the state will see temps higher than they’ve been in quite some time. Heat Advisories have been put into effect beginning tomorrow at 1pm across parts of north Texas, including the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex. With the increase in moisture and humidity over the past 24 hours, Heat index values tomorrow and again on Thursday will be topping out close to 105 across the region…and tipping 110 by the weekend. This certainly has the potential to become deadly for anyone sensitive to the heat, or to those working outdoors during the afternoon hours.
Thursday doesn’t look much better with temperatures climbing an additional couple of degrees and Heat Index values following along right behind. It’s this time of year that we talk a lot about the heat index which is basically how hot it “feels” outside at any given time. How high the humidity values become plays an important role in calculating the resulting heat index value. The more humid it is, the less evaporation occurs when you sweat. That evaporation process is what helps to cool you off. If the sweat can’t evaporate quickly enough, you’re much more likely to experience heat illness or heatstroke. You also have to keep in mind that heat index values are calculated based on being in the shade, which means that if you’re out in direct sunlight, you can easily add a good 10 to 15 degrees to it. Also a factor this year…we didn’t heat up as early in the summer season as we usually do, so we’re not really as acclimated to this as we normally would be by the first of August.
Beyond Thursday, high pressure will center over the state and temps will continue to climb through the weekend and heat index values will top out near 110 for some parts of northern Texas. That’s going to feel hotter than fried h-e-double hockey sticks!
I’d like to say things will get better going into next week, but current mid to long-range forecast models are staying consistent with keeping this strong ridge of high pressure over Texas for at least the next 7 to 10 days. Beyond that, there’s really no (reliable) way to determine when we’ll get our next break from the heat and see rain back in the forecast. All we can do now is wait it out and see how we do as we get into meteorological fall…September through November. The Climate Prediction Center outlooks below for those months are certainly looking optimistic!
Your Sunday Forecast!
Sunday, 02 August 2015 09:14
Good morning and happy Sunday! Pretty much a cut and paste of yesterday’s forecast with additional rain chances across western Texas and the panhandle today and possibly lasting into the overnight hours. The high pressure ridge over the Permian Basin/Trans Pecos area will continue to stay put for a few more days…maybe shifting just a bit further west before expanding back east again during the middle of the work week. This will leave much of western Texas under northwest flow aloft which will help to bring continued rain chances to the region for the next couple of days.
Highs today…creeping up a few degrees from yesterday. Residual cloud cover over the panhandle will result in temps maxing out in the upper 80s to low 90s. Hottest region, once again, will be south Texas where highs in the 100 to 102 range is expected once again. The good news is lower dewpoints this afternoon…less moisture in the atmosphere…will keep the heat index values in check and right around the actual air temperature. Overnight lows will be mainly in the 70s…although some of the urban areas will likely be right at 79 to 80 which doesn’t equate to much cooling overnight.
Looking ahead at the trends for this month, check out these nice graphics from the NWS office in Houston/Galveston. Above average rainfall looks to continue for parts of the panhandle. Near average rainfall is expected across the remainder of north and down into northern central Texas. Southern and southwest Texas will likely experience below average rainfall for the month. The graphic has the average August precip amounts listed for southeast Texas…so here’s some August precip averages from a few other parts of the state… Dallas 1.85, Waco 2.13, Paris 2.2, Vernon 2.44, Midland 2.13, Pecos 1.61, Amarillo 2.91 and Lubbock 1.93. Looking ahead to September and October…we could see the return of cooler and wetter patterns if the current Climate Prediction Center forecasts stay consistent.