Following a short break earlier in the week, summer-like weather has made a quick return to Central and South Texas. A large ridge of high pressure situated over northern Mexico and the Desert Southwest is forecast to spread over Texas this afternoon and through the weekend, causing a pattern of sunny, dry and very hot weather. Although the period of late May typically has the highest probability for rain out of the entire year, the holiday weekend this year is looking to be sunny and dry. Wind speeds will be light this afternoon. But a strengthening pressure gradient is expected to cause breezy southerly winds of 10-15 mph with gusts to 25 mph Saturday through Memorial Day.

  • High temperatures Friday through Monday are forecast to be in the mid and upper 90s across the Hill Country and Central Texas regions, and in the low to mid-90s across the coastal plains.
  • Low temperatures Saturday and Sunday mornings will be around 70 degrees.
  • Low temperatures Monday and Tuesday mornings will be in the low and mid-70s.

A small change in the weather pattern is forecast to take place next Tuesday through Thursday, when the ridge of high pressure over Texas shifts to the east and a trough of low pressure moves into the central and southern Rockies. A weak cold front associated with the trough is forecast slide south and stall across North and Northwest Texas Wednesday through Friday. Forecasts call for a few showers and isolated thunderstorms to develop along the cold front both, and there will be a slight chance (a 20 percent chance) some of these showers and storms may spread south through the Hill Country and Central Texas regions Wednesday and Thursday. Across the coastal plains, a couple of isolated rain showers and thunderstorms will be possible Tuesday through Thursday as moisture levels increase off the Gulf. Rain amounts, if any, are forecast to total less than a quarter inch.  The small chance for rain is forecast to diminish next Friday.

  • High temperatures Tuesday through Friday are forecast to be in the low and mid-90s across the Hill Country and Central Texas regions, and in the low 90s across the coastal plains.

Looking out into the first weekend of June, the ridge of high pressure is forecast to redevelop across Texas, northern Mexico and the Desert Southwest. The ridge is forecast to persist well into the week of June 6th. Sunny, dry and hot weather can be expected. High temperatures next weekend are forecast to return to the upper 90s. The outlook for the week of June 6th calls for high temperatures to be quite hot; generally around 100-101 degrees.

Tropical Weather Outlook

Weather conditions across the tropical Atlantic, the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico are currently quiet and tropical cyclone development is not expected through Tuesday.

Forecasters will be closely watching for possible tropical development in the Bay of Campeche or the central Gulf of Mexico the second half of next week.

25th Anniversary of the Jarrell Tornado

 Today, May 27th, marks the 25th anniversary of the Central Texas tornado outbreak and the F5 Jarrell tornado. The monster multi-vortex tornado was 3/4 miles wide and had top winds close to 300 mph. The tornado claimed 27 lives in in the town of Jarrell in Williamson County. The Jarrell tornado was the last F5 tornado to occur in Texas. The National Weather Service has put together a special look back at this unique weather event:

Possible Meteor Storm Monday Night

In late 1995, Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 exploded. Next week, some of the debris might hit Earth, possibly providing the material necessary for an awesome meteor shower or meteor storm. Multiple forecasters agree that a meteor shower could erupt this Monday night, May 30th, when the  Earth runs into one or more debris streams from Comet 73P. The display could be as intense as a meteor storm (1000 or more meteors per hour) or as weak as nothing at all. No one knows how much debris is inside the approaching streams, so meteor rates are currently hard to estimate.

Whatever happens, people in North America are in a good position to see it. Almost the entire continent will be in Moon-free darkness when the shower peaks. Maximum activity is expected to occur about midnight CDT Monday night. The shower’s radiant (the point from which all meteors stream) will be almost straight above Baja California. For people in Central Texas, that point will be nearly directly overhead.

Based on past performance, the tau Herculids seems unlikely to produce a good show. For nearly a century the shower has been a dud. The X-factor this year is fresh material from the comet’s catastrophic breakup in 1995. If the new meteoroids reach Earth–and that is a big IF–shooting stars will be flying prolifically! Give it a shot Monday night.

I hope everyone has a safe, and enjoyable holiday weekend. Stay cool and hydrated!