Good morning and happy Saturday!  The next several days and into the middle of next week are looking unsettled with daily rain chances across various parts of the state as several weak upper level disturbances arrive.  For today, a cold front is pushing south into central Texas where it will stall out by later this afternoon.  A disturbance will move in from old Mexico and help to generate isolated to scattered storms and areas of heavy rain this afternoon and evening south of the front.  This activity may persist into the late evening and overnight hours, especially across the Rio Grande Plains, western Hill Country and far west Texas as the low level jet picks up after sunset.  Widespread severe is not expected, but some of the storms could become strong with a damaging wind and hail threat.

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On Sunday, the stalled front is expected to begin lifting back to the north.  A slightly stronger upper level impulse will arrive from the west and help to generate additional showers and storms from west to east across the western half of the state by Sunday afternoon.  Once again, a few of these storms could become strong to severe with the threat of downburst winds and some large hail.  The storms that form are currently expected to also survive through the late evening and overnight hours pushing east across central Texas.

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For Monday, the threat of severe weather increases across parts of the panhandle and western north Texas as a stronger upper level disturbance arrives and a sharp dryline sets up across west Texas.  Models are still in somewhat of a disagreement with regards to how everything will play out, but at this time the thinking is for strong to severe storm development late Monday and into Monday night across the slight risk area with supercell development initially across southeast Colorado and northeastern New Mexico which will push east and into the panhandle and northwest Texas during the nighttime hours.  We’ll continue to monitor this threat and bring you updates later this weekend as this forecast refines.

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Daily highs over the next couple of days will be strongly influenced by the position of the cold front, rain and cloud cover across the state.  Areas across the northern half of the state will be seeing highs a good 10 to 20 degrees below seasonal averages for this time of the year.  Of course I guess we really shouldn’t complain because several northern US states are currently under freeze warnings with temps down into the mid 20s.

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For next week, the outlook for rainfall across the state looks quite healthy.  This rain won’t fall all at one time, so flooding should be somewhat less of a threat than what we experienced last spring.  Still, there will be chances for rain and storms with accumulations of 4 to 6 inches across a large swath of the state.  The long range models are consistent with bringing several rounds of upper level disturbances across the state next week with multiple chances for rain and possibly some severe weather, but exact timing and impacts can’t be determined this far out.  We’ll likely have to take the upcoming rainfall and severe weather forecasts for next week on a day to day basis.

Precip thru next Friday