…An arctic cold front Friday morning will bring much colder temperatures and windy conditions. A widespread late season freeze is forecast Friday night…

Although today’s weather will feel very spring-like with the temperature warming into the low 70s, another blast of winter is on the way for Friday and Saturday. A large trough of low pressure currently dropping southeast out of western Canada is pushing an arctic cold front with very cold air south across the Plains states. As of late Thursday morning, the arctic front had made it south of Amarillo, where Amarillo’s temperature was down to 20 degrees.

Forecasts call for the front to make slow progress south across Northwest and West Texas this afternoon and tonight, picking up some steam Friday morning into Friday afternoon. The front is predicted to reach the northern Hill Country a few hours after midnight Thursday night, the Austin area between 8 am and 10 am Friday morning, and the coastal region between about noon and 3 pm Friday afternoon. Expect the temperature to fall sharply behind the cold front:

  • Readings across the Hill Country are forecast to hold in the mid and upper 30s throughout the day. For the Austin and Central Texas region, readings will fall from the 50s in advance of the front, to upper 30s to low 40s by mid and late afternoon. For the coastal region, readings in the low 60s will fall into the 40s mid to late afternoon.

Strong northerly winds of 15-25 mph, with gusts to near 40 mph are forecast Friday through Friday night.

Also note, an area of light precipitation is forecast to develop across West and Northwest Texas Thursday night, with the precipitation forecast to expand east across Central, South, and East Texas early Friday morning through late Friday afternoon. A mixture of drizzle, light rain, light freezing rain, and light sleet is forecast Friday morning across the Big Country and the northern Hill Country, extending south to northern Edwards, Kerr, Gillespie, Llano, and Burnet counties. No accumulations of sleet or freezing rain are expected, but icy and slippery bridges and overpasses will be possible across the northern Hill Country into early Friday afternoon. For the Austin/Interstate 35 corridor and areas southeast, just drizzle and light rain is forecast. Rain amounts are predicted to generally remain under a tenth of an inch. The precipitation is forecast to end from west to east Friday afternoon. The sky is then expected to clear from west to east Friday evening into Friday night.

A widespread freeze is predicted for the entire region Friday night. In fact, a hard freeze is forecast for the Hill Country and most of Central Texas.

  • Lows Saturday morning are forecast to be in the low and mid-20s across the Hill Country, be near 28-30 degrees across Central Texas and dip to near 30-32 degrees across the coastal plains.

Under a sunny sky Saturday, expect a modest warmup, with the temperature climbing to the mid and upper 50s.

A light freeze is forecast region-wide Saturday night. Lows Sunday morning are forecast to generally be near 30-32 degrees.

Sunny weather and warmer temperatures are predicted for Sunday and the first half of next week. Lows Monday morning look to be in the mid and upper 40s.

Those with garden and agricultural interests should take protective actions Friday morning through Sunday morning to minimize freeze damage to sensitive and young plants.