It was a cold weekend across Central and South Texas in the wake of Friday's heavy rain. Temperatures held in the 40s Saturday and only warmed to the mid-50s Sunday. As we kick off the new week, a large dome of cool, Canadian high pressure covers Texas and the southern Plains states. This high will remain over the region into Tuesday, causing continued cool temperatures. Milder readings are forecast Wednesday and Thursday as southerly winds return to the region.
Weather conditions will be sunny and dry today and Tuesday. The temperature should warm to the mid and upper 50s this afternoon and to the low and middle 60s Tuesday. Another freeze is forecast for the Hill Country Monday night into Tuesday morning. Lows Tuesday morning will be around 28-32 degrees across the Hill Country, in the middle 30s across Central Texas and in the upper 30s across the coastal plains. Lows Wednesday morning will be in the upper 40s.
The sky is predicted to become mostly cloudy Tuesday night through Wednesday as clouds and moisture increase off the Gulf of Mexico. Forecast solutions call for a weak wave of low pressure to track northeast out of Mexico and move across the state Wednesday. Atmospheric moisture levels may increase sufficiently to cause the development of a few spotty light rain showers for areas east of Interstate 35 Wednesday and Wednesday night. Wednesday's temperature is forecast to warm to the mid and upper 60s. Expect a southerly breeze at 10-15 mph. The low Thursday morning will be around 50 degrees.
Forecast solutions call for a stronger trough of low pressure to dip south out of the southern Rockies and move east across the Red River Valley region Thursday and Thursday night. In advance of the trough and its associated cold front, there will be a slight chance for a few rain showers for areas along and east of Interstate 35 Thursday and Thursday evening. The probability for rain will be near 20 percent. Should rain showers develop, amounts are predicted to total less than a quarter inch. Thursday's sky will be partly to mostly cloudy. The temperature is forecast to warm to the low 60s ahead of the front, trending down through the 50s in the afternoon.
The big weather story for Thursday into Friday will be strong and gusty northerly winds developing behind the cold front. Forecast solutions indicate a strong low-level northerly jet will influence winds at the surface. Forecasts call for northerly winds of 20-30 mph with gusts to around 40 mph developing Thursday afternoon, with the strong winds persisting Thursday night and Friday. Lows Friday morning will include the mid-30s across the Hill Country, the upper 30s across Central Texas and the lower 40s towards the coast.
A sunny, dry and somewhat mild weather pattern is predicted Friday through next Monday as a weak ridge of high pressure in the upper atmosphere settles over the region. High temperatures in the upper 50s Friday, will warm to the low 60s Saturday and the middle 60s Sunday and Monday. Low temperatures Saturday morning will generally be in the mid-30s, warming to the mid-40s over the weekend.
The outlook for next week calls for a chance for rain showers developing Tuesday, continuing through Thursday or Friday as a trough of low pressure from the Pacific pushes inland over northwestern Mexico and slowly tracks to the east. This system is forecast to bring scattered to numerous rain showers to the Central and South Texas. Temperatures next week are predicted to remain mild, with highs in the 60s and lows in the 40s to around 50 degrees.
It's still too early to get a handle on weather conditions around Christmas Day. However, long-range forecast data doesn't show a pattern that is favorable for arctic air to spill into Texas over the next couple of weeks. I'll begin to get a better idea about holiday weather over the coming week.Thursday and Friday Rainfall Totals
Friday's slow-moving storm system brought widespread, soaking rains to all of Central and South Texas. Amounts were highest for areas east of Interstate 35, where totals generally averaged between 3 and 4 inches. Totals across the eastern Hill Country and the Interstate 35 corridor were generally between 2 and 3 inches. Rain amounts were lowest across the western Hill Country where totals were mostly between 1 and 1.5 inches. LCRA's highest gauged storm total was 5.13 inches at a gauge in northwestern Bastrop County, along Wilbarger Creek. A gauge in northwestern Matagorda County, near Midfield, recorded 5.09 inches.The following is the National Weather Service's estimate of rain falling between 6 am Thursday and 6 am Monday:Geminid Meteor Shower 2018
The peak of the Geminid meteor shower is coming up on the mornings of December 13th and 14th.
The Geminid meteor shower – always a highlight of the meteor year – will peak around the mornings of December 13 and 14, 2018. The Geminids are a very reliable shower if you watch at the peak time of night (centered on about 2 a.m. for all parts of the globe) and if you watch in a dark sky. The meteors tend to be bold, white and quick. The curious rock comet called 3200 Phaethon is the parent body of this shower.
On a dark night, near the peak, you can often catch 50 or more meteors per hour.
Special equipment? None needed. Just find a dark, open sky and maybe bring a sleeping bag to keep warm. Plan to sprawl back in a hammock, lawn chair, pile of hay or blanket on the ground. Lie down in comfort, and look upward. (Information courtesy Earthsky.org)