Thursday Update on the Arctic Cold - LCRA Thursday Update on the Arctic Cold - LCRA


The National Weather Service has extended the Winter Weather Advisory for the eastern and central Hill Country and the Austin/Interstate 35 corridor region until 6 pm Thursday. The advisory has been dropped for Fayette and Colorado Counties.

Temperatures fell below freezing all the way south to the Interstate 10 corridor late Wednesday night into early Thursday morning. Occasional light drizzle and light rain developed Wednesday night, causing a light coating of ice on surfaces across the Hill Country and the Austin/Interstate 35. This in turn caused slippery and hazardous driving conditions. With readings forecast to remain close to freezing this afternoon, light icing is expected to continue on bridges, overpasses, and elevated roadways across the Hill Country and I-35 corridor. A check on midday temperatures showed readings were still below freezing across the Hill Country and most of Central Texas. The freezing line generally stretched from San Antonio, to Bastrop, to College Station. Actual liquid rain amounts since Wednesday afternoon have generally ranged from a trace to just a few hundredths of an inch.

Thursday’s analysis showed the trough of low pressure responsible for the light precipitation is exiting our region off to the east. This is expected to bring an end to most of the light precipitation across the Hill Country and Central Texas regions this afternoon. Occasional light showers do look to continue across the coastal region through this evening. With no sunshine today, only a slight rise in the temperature is forecast this afternoon. As a result, not much melting can be expected. High temperatures are forecast to be near 30-32 degrees across the Hill Country, be around 32-35 degrees across Central Texas, and warm to around 42-45 degrees across the coastal plains.

A reinforcing surge of cold and dry air is predicted to spread south across the region this evening and overnight. This drier air should limit the development of additional precipitation across the Hill Country and Central Texas regions this evening and overnight. Meanwhile, occasional light showers are expected to continue across the coastal plains region through the overnight. It will be cold, with lows Friday morning in the low and mid-20s across the Hill Country, in the upper 20s to low 30s across Central Texas, and the upper 30s across the coastal plains.

Forecasters will be closely monitoring weather developments early Friday morning across Central Texas, where a couple of forecast solutions indicate some of the light rain across the coastal region may drift north to the Austin/Interstate 35 corridor. Should this be the case, some light freezing drizzle/ freezing rain and sleet will be possible across the Interstate 35 corridor, including the Austin area, Friday morning.

Friday’s weather is shaping up to be mostly cloudy. Warmer temperatures are expected, with readings climbing to the low and mid-40s in the afternoon. A slight chance for rain is forecast to develop Friday afternoon in advance of another trough of low pressure tracking east out of the southern Rockies. With temperatures above freezing, no wintery precipitation is forecast.

Friday night into Saturday morning, light rain showers are forecast to increase in coverage across the region as an overrunning pattern sets up ahead of the approaching trough. The rain may become freezing rain across a good part of the Hill Country where temperatures early Saturday morning are predicted to be near or just below freezing. Mainly a cold rain is forecast for the Austin/Central Texas area where readings are forecast to stay just above freezing. Lows Saturday morning are forecast to be near 30-32 degrees across the Hill Country, in the mid-30s across Central Texas, and in the low 40s across the coastal plains.

Widespread light rain showers are forecast across the region Saturday through Saturday night as the upper trough slowly tracks east across the southern Plains states. The good news is temperatures are forecast to be above freezing, with highs generally in the low and mid-40s. The rain is forecast to taper off from west to east late Saturday night into Sunday morning. Although the chance for rain will be high during this period, totals through Sunday morning are only forecast to be around a quarter inch. Lows Sunday morning will include the low 30s across the Hill Country, the mid and upper 30s across Central Texas, and the mid-40s across the coastal plains.

Sunday is shaping up to be mostly sunny and warmer, with high temperatures in the upper 50s.

Bob