July has been a tough month across Central and South Texas. Temperatures have averaged among the hottest on record while at the same time, rain has been very hard to come by. We’re currently in an extreme summer pattern that is unfortunately going to be very hard to break anytime soon. The outlook as we move into the first half of August is for more of the same.
Friday’s weather maps showed a broad area of high pressure in the upper atmosphere covering the southern U.S. and northern Mexico. Over the past few days, the ridge has weakened slightly, with its center now located away from Texas over western Nevada and southern Georgia. With the ridge not quite as strong as it has been recently, it is allowing small surges of tropical moisture to spread inland across parts of Southeast and South Central Texas. Over the past couple of days, this increased moisture has led to the development of widely scattered rain showers for areas east of Interstate 35.
This pattern of widely scattered afternoon showers and thunderstorms is forecast to repeat Friday afternoon for areas along and east of Interstate 35 as an area of enhanced moisture spreads inland off the Gulf. The probability for rain will be near 20 percent along the Austin and Interstate 35 corridor, and near 30 percent for areas between La Grange and the coast. Keep in mind any rain which develops will be scattered in nature, with most locations remaining dry. For the lucky folks that do happen to seen rain, totals should average less than a quarter inch.
Aside from this slight chance for rain, Friday’s weather is predicted to be mostly sunny and hot. High temperatures will be around 100-103 degrees across the Hill Country and Central Texas regions, and in the upper 90s across the coastal plains.
The flow of moisture off the Gulf of Mexico will be hindered over the weekend as a plume of Saharan dust and its associated dry air spreads into Texas. Friday morning satellite images showed a fairly large area of Saharan dust located over the western and southern Gulf of Mexico that is spreading to the northwest. Forecasts call for the dust is to arrive across our area early Saturday, with the dust sticking around through Sunday. The dust is predicted to exit north to the Plains states Monday. Light to moderate concentrations of dust are predicted, which may at times turn our sky a gray or milky-white color.
With a drier and more stable atmosphere in place this weekend, the chance for rain is forecast to diminish across Central Texas. Just a couple of isolated showers will be possible across the coastal plains region. Expect continued sunny, hot, and hazy conditions, with high temperatures in the range of 100-103 degrees.
The outlook for next week and next weekend calls for more sunny and hot weather, with little chance for rain. Forecasts call for the ridge to strengthen slightly across Texas, squashing the surges of moisture we are seeing this week. High temperatures are predicted to trend up a couple of degrees Wednesday through Friday as the center of the high pressure ridge moves over the southern Plains states. Expect high temperatures near 101-104 degrees across the Hill Country and Central Texas regions and around 98-100 degrees across the coastal plains.
Looking out into the week of August 8th, long-range forecasts are showing little change in the pattern. Daily high temperatures are forecast to be around 100-103 degrees. Little to no rain is forecast
Tropical Weather Outlook
The tropical Atlantic remains quiet. There are no systems in place which pose a threat for tropical storm development over the next 5 days.
The Delta Aquariid Meteor Shower this Weekend and Next Week
The not so famous Delta Aquariid meteor shower is underway and will continue into early August. Watch anywhere between mid-evening to dawn. The shower’s radiant rises in mid-evening, becomes highest in the southern sky around 2 a.m. and trends low by dawn. The Delta Aquariids’ maximum hourly rate can reach 20 meteors in dark skies with no moon, when the radiant is high in the sky. Right now, the moon is only up in the evening, so take advantage of the moon-free nights and early mornings in late July and early August for watching the Delta Aquariids.
Have a great weekend!