Month: January 2019

January comes to an end today, and overall it has been a more or less typical winter month. Temperatures are going to end within a few tenths of a degree of normal, and rainfall totals will for the most part be slightly above normal. February, however, will start on a much warmer note—with spring-like days and much warmer nights. Winter won’t return until about a week from now.

Most of the Houston area received 3 to 6 inches of rain this month. About 4 inches is normal for January. (National Weather Service)

Thursday

In addition to warmer weather, we’re now going to return to a wetter pattern without high pressure to shut rain chances down. Today, especially, should see some healthy rain potential as low pressure moves up the Texas coast. Chances will be best to the southwest of Houston, near Matagorda Bay, but coastal areas of the Houston region will also see a solid 50 to 70 percent chance of rain, with lesser possibilities inland later today. Accumulations should only be a few tenths of an inch. Cloudy skies should keep highs to about 60 degrees, with lows tonight only falling a few days off of daytime highs.

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Temperatures are generally in the low 40s across Houston this morning, ranging from 41 degrees at Bush Intercontinental Airport to 45 in Galveston at 6:15am. If, when you step outside, you think, “Oh this feels a bit chilly,” you might pause for a moment to consider the Midwest. The following map shows “wind chill temperatures” for the region this morning, and some of them are nearly 100 degrees colder than the air temperature in Houston. For example, Chicago has an air temperature this morning of -22 degrees, but with westerly winds of about 20 mph, the wind chill at O’Hare Airport is -49 degrees. Parts of Minnesota are near -60 degrees.

Wind chill temperatures at 6a.m. Wednesday in the Midwest. Click to zoom. (Space City Weather)

Wednesday

Today will be the last day that Houston sees long stretches of sunshine for awhile, before a warmer, grayer, and at times wetter pattern descends on the region. With partly sunny skies, we should see highs today climb into the mid-50s, and mostly cloudy skies tonight should keep lows in the mid- to upper-40s. After this, say bon voyage to winter for nearly a week.

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As expected in the wake of Monday night’s cold front, it is a chilly and windy morning, with temperatures ranging from the mid-30s inland to around 40 degrees along the coast. Winds will make it feel much colder, with recent gusts of 25mph recorded near downtown Houston, and 39mph in Galveston. Please bundle up this morning!

Tuesday

Drier air will continue to blow in today, making for a clear and sunny day with a high near 50 degrees. With persistent northerly winds, however, it will feel quite chilly all day long. If you think this is cold, however, be glad we only received a glancing blow of the cold air moving down into the Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States. Check out these minimum temperatures for Tuesday night and Wednesday morning—when most all of the Houston metro area should remain just above freezing.

Low temperatures will be extremely cold for the Midwest on Tuesday night. (Pivotal Weather)

Wednesday

As high pressure slides to the east on Tuesday night, an easterly flow on Wednesday should begin to bring some clouds into the area, and these will initially blunt a warm-up of the region to some extent. Expect high temperatures in the 50s on Wednesday, and only the 40s on Wednesday night under mostly cloudy skies.

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Relatively mild conditions are in place across Houston, but we’ll see a strong cooldown on Monday night, leading to a cooler first half of this week. After this front, however, winter will take a backseat for awhile. Houston should experience relatively warm conditions for the first week of February, with several days of highs in the 70s, and warm nights for this time of year in the upper 50s.

Monday

The patchy fog scattered across the region will soon dissipate this morning, giving way to a partly to mostly sunny day. Expect high temperatures of around 70 degrees for most of Houston, with increasing southerly winds—with gusts perhaps up to 20mph—during the afternoon hours as the onshore flow really gets going.

Rain accumulations with Monday night’s front. (Pivotal Weather)

A cold front will push through the region tonight, bringing a broken line of showers and perhaps a few thunderstorms. The front should reach the College Station area between 6pm and 9pm, push through Houston between 8pm and 11pm, and move off the coast by around midnight. Light to moderate showers could linger behind the front for an hour or two, but drier (and colder) air should quickly move in after the front’s passage. Due to the overall atmospheric setup, and fast-moving nature of the front, I would not expect more than one- to two-tenths of an inch of rain for most.

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