Monday, March 18, 2013
This weekend could be “unseasonably cool” in North Texas
Meteorologists say freezing temperatures could return to North Texas.
There’s a cold front making its way through North Texas right about now — maybe you’ve noticed the partly gloomy skies overhead. It’s certainly not a cold cold front, and when clouds disappear between now and the afternoon, expect temperatures to get climb back to near 70, not too far from yesterday’s high of 72 at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. It may be “chilly” tonight, with lows dipping into the 40s.
And so it’ll go throughout the week, says Dennis Cavanaugh, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Fort Worth: Upper-level systems will come and go, bringing with them the vague chance of rain and slight cool-downs that will keep daytime highs around 70, maybe a few degrees higher. But don’t expect Tuesday night’s front to bring much rain — unless you’re around Waco, let’s say.
But look further away — to Thursday, and to an upper-level system cooking off the West Coast.
“The timing may change as it moves on shore, but for now it looks like we’ve got 20 to 30 percent chance of storms Thursday afternoon, and it depends how it evolves,” says Cavanaugh. “We may still have a chance of storms Friday, if the front lingers off to our northwest,” he said. Still, it’s not nearly the kind of rain we need heading into the warm-weather months.
“We’re actually not that far from normal” annual rainfall through mid-March, says Cavanaugh, but there’s not much safe-bet rain on the horizon. “And how spring evolves will be telling when it comes to water restrictions in the summer.”
One thing that does look likely: a cooler-than-normal weekend that could see freezing temperatures return to North Texas, especially in the outlying areas.
“That’s all dependent on the jet stream,” says Cavanaugh. “It’ll dig south no matter what but, if it’s west we’ll get really cold, and if it stays east we’ll stay where we are. Right now the jet stream almost looks like it’s right on top of us, so we’re going more with the cooler side of possibilities — which is why we’re going with highs in the 50s and lows in the 30s.”
Our average last freeze was, oh, about a week ago, Cavanaugh says. But we’ve seen sub-32-degree temperatures into April, he say, “so it’s not completely out of the ordinary.”