Houston is cold but calm this Friday morning

Good morning, and it is indeed a chilly one across the area. Temperatures this morning are mostly in the 30s and the precipitation is moving offshore. Any risk of icing has now passed for the majority of the area, and per drivetexas.org the only icy patches being reported right now are along 290 between Hockley and Waller. We can now settle in for a chilly start to the weekend, though a calm one at least.


Some lingering rain or sleet may occur in the Matagorda Bay region until a little after sunrise, but everyone else should just be waking up to clouds.

Radar as of 6 AM shows the only precipitation left along the immediate coast. Everything is moving offshore. (RadarScope)

Those clouds will clear from northwest to southeast this morning and afternoon. I’d venture to say at least 90 percent of the area will see sunshine before the day is up, with the exceptions maybe being along the immediate Gulf coast. Despite developing sunshine, most places probably won’t get out of the 40s today. Coupled with a light to moderate breeze, it will feel chilly.


Tonight will be the coldest night of this cold snap. Skies should be clear and winds light, or what meteorologists refer to as “ideal radiational cooling.” It means temperatures will fall steadily after sunset, and we should bottom out in the 20s and low-30s across the region tonight.

Tonight will be a cold one across the area with a freeze likely for most areas away from the immediate coast. (Pivotal Weather)

Look for a low right around freezing inside the Beltway, 29-31° outside of there to Grand Parkway, and generally upper 20s beyond that. As always, slightly higher or slightly lower temperatures are possible based on your location, but it should not get any worse than that. It’s probably a good idea to protect any sensitive plants, particularly outside the Beltway, but we don’t expect any serious problems. If you’re looking for a benchmark, this freeze looks similar in a lot of ways to the ones we had earlier this month, just after New Years. Another freeze will be possible Sunday morning, but it would be most likely north and east of Houston and a degree or so warmer than tomorrow’s.

The rest of the weekend looks splendid, with plenty of sunshine Saturday and some high clouds on Sunday. Expect highs in the lower half of the 50s Saturday and upper-50s on Sunday.


A quick moving, vigorous disturbance is going to pass by the region Monday afternoon and evening. Expect clouds to increase Sunday night into Monday morning. Rain will begin to develop and spread from southwest to northeast across the region later Monday morning into the afternoon. The heaviest rain looks to be around mid to late afternoon, and then it will taper off Monday evening. At this point, it looks like a good old fashioned soaking rain, something most of the area needs right now. There is some chance we’ll get some thunderstorms embedded within the rain as well, and some stronger storms can’t yet be entirely ruled out. But that is not the expectation right now. Check back with us Monday morning for the latest.

Most of the area should receive at least a half-inch to an inch of rain from Monday’s system, with some higher amounts possible south and east. (Pivotal Weather)

We should be able to muster a solid half-inch to inch of rain across most of the area, as long as the current forecast holds. The highest totals should be south and east of the city. Monday will warm from the 40s into the mid-50s.

Rest of next week

Look for a warm day with sunshine on Tuesday, as highs should get back into the 60s. A cold front should uneventfully pass through the region Tuesday night, yielding some more 30s for lows by Thursday morning and highs in the 50s Wednesday and Thursday. A freeze is not expected outside of perhaps typical colder spots like Conroe, Huntsville, Cleveland, or west of Katy. Skies should be partly to mostly sunny. A general warming trend will likely begin after that cold front, which could return us to more frequent above normal temperatures again by early February. Stay tuned!

A breezy, cold 2022 Houston Marathon ahead

We’ll be in for a weekend of change, and it will be obvious when it hits, as winds should be pretty gusty behind tomorrow’s cold front. That said, this will be pretty typical for a Houston winter weekend, and much of the forecast ahead will resemble a fairly typical winter here. For those of you running the Houston Marathon (or the half or 5k) this weekend, first off, good luck! Secondly, the winds on Sunday, while not as bad as tomorrow afternoon, will certainly come with some bite. With a 15 to 20 mph northwest wind and temperatures in the 30s on Sunday morning, it will feel like it’s in the 20s to start the race.

Forecast wind chills on Sunday morning will be in the 20s with actual temperatures in the 30s to start the race. (Pivotal Weather)

Thankfully, as temperatures warm up through the morning, the wind should slowly back down. By 10 AM, winds will be back down around 15 mph with temperatures in the 40s, making it feel more like the mid to upper-30s. It should be mainly sunny for the race, so at least you’ll have that.


Before we get to Sunday, we have to get through today and tomorrow. Look for a warm one with sunshine for Friday and highs in the low, maybe mid-70s. There is some patchy fog along the coastal plain this morning, mainly south of Houston, so if your travels take you down 288 into Brazoria County or toward Matagorda County, just be aware of that through about 9 or 10 AM.


Tomorrow’s cold front should pass through the region in the early morning hours, probably around or just before sunrise. Look for a sharp wind shift with sustained winds of 20 to 30 mph and some higher gusts.

Maximum wind gusts on Saturday should peak around 30 to 35 mph in a lot of spots, with 40 to 45 mph gusts near Galveston Bay or at the coast. Interior areas west of Houston may also see some 40 mph gusts as well. (Weather Bell)

This shouldn’t be widespread power outage stuff, but you might see a few reports of brief outages due to wind. Winds will be gustier along the coast, so Galveston and communities along Galveston Bay could see gusts of 40 mph or so.

Along with the winds will come falling temperatures. Saturday’s high will be achieved around daybreak, with temperatures falling through the 50s and into the 40s on Saturday morning. We’ll level off some for afternoon and maybe even warm back up a tick or two.

This front will come with limited ability to produce storms, so look for perhaps a broken area of showers in the early morning, mainly south and east of Houston. Most areas are unlikely to see measurable rainfall.


As noted at the top, it will be cold on Sunday morning with 30s in most spots. A light freeze is a good bet outside the metro area, but the wind will actually help prevent that from being too widespread. Places like Conroe or Navasota or Cleveland or Brookshire could still see lows get close to freezing for a couple hours. Everyone else should see mid to upper-30s with that breeze. The day should be nicer with highs into the 50s and ample sunshine.

Early next week

Look for quiet weather on Monday and Tuesday. Most places will be back in the 30s on Monday morning, but a freeze is unlikely in most spots. With sunshine, we’ll warm into the 60s for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday. Onshore flow resumes on Tuesday, allowing us to slowly warm, so expect lows in the 40s in the morning, warming into the 70s in the afternoon. Our next front is penciled in for Wednesday.

Late next week

Look for a fairly unsettled weather pattern to take hold for Thursday and Friday, which could lead to some rain across the area, perhaps focused mainly on the southern half of the region. Temperatures will likely stay cool behind Wednesday’s front, with perhaps a reinforcing front next weekend to usher in some even colder air by Sunday or Monday. Again, there is no realistic sign of any kind of massive cold outbreak or deep freeze (the pattern setting up over North America next week favors the strongest cold relative to normal to aim at places like Buffalo, Chicago, and Minneapolis right now, not the Plains/Texas). But it will likely be chilly regardless, and there will probably be more than one opportunity for a night of below freezing temperatures in Houston.

Speaking of Buffalo, if you’ll be watching the Bills/Pats game this weekend, it’s going to be a brutal one in Orchard Park. Saturday evening’s kickoff temperature should be about 5 degrees, give or take.

More for you Monday!

Tremendous rainfall & a possible tornado west of Houston tonight; improving overnight

Apologies for the late (or early) post, but given the situation across the area tonight, I felt we needed to update.

We’ve got two main issues of concern: Tornadoes and flooding.

The tornado threat has flared up and down since this afternoon. None have looked especially menacing, but at a couple points we did observe tornadic debris signatures; once this afternoon just northeast of IAH Airport, the other with the late evening storms near the Beltway and I-10 west of Houston.

The tornado threat has lulled now, but just be aware that another storm or two could produce isolated, brief tornadoes. I believe that threat has peaked, but still have a way to get warnings if possible overnight.

A possible tornadic debris signature (TDS), indicating lofted debris from a tornado was noted on radar this evening (upper panel) just inside the Beltway north of I-10. (RadarScope)

As far as flooding goes, there is serious street flooding west of Houston, particularly from around Westpark & Highway 6 through I-10 and the Beltway northeast to near Greenspoint. Rainfall was at one point coming down at over 4 inches in an hour between Briarforest and Spring Branch. Please stay off the roads west of Houston, as that will take time to drain.

Rain totals have been widely variable, but 4-6″ has fallen west of Houston and also well northeast toward Liberty County since Saturday. (Harris County Flood Control)

The Spring Branch area may also see creeks and drainage out of banks for a time before it subsides.

From here, we should see support for storms begin to fade. The rain will become more sporadic and intermittent, easier for drainage to keep up with. Through about 3 AM, however is when things will be the most dicey. Look for deteriorating road conditions up north between Aldine and IAH into Kingwood as well, but the hope would be that rain rates would be less than what we observed in Spring Branch.

Most of this will be done by morning, and while there is a continued chance of showers or storms tomorrow, they should not be this significant or severe. We’ll update you later tomorrow morning. Hope you’re able to get some sleep tonight.

A chance for some actual rain this weekend across southeast Texas

While we’ve been discussing periodic cold fronts, record warm Decembers, and everything else over the last month or so, we have been quietly amassing a rainfall deficit in the Houston area. Since November 1st, Houston has officially seen just under 6 inches of rainfall, about 5.96″ to be exact. Normally over that span we would have received roughly 8.5 inches of rain. The last 30 days in particular have been pretty rough all across Texas with a handful of localized exceptions.

Rainfall in the 30 previous days (as of Wednesday) was running about 50 percent of normal in Houston but worse over much of Texas. (High Plains Regional Climate Center)

We’ve received about half our normal rainfall over the last month, and other parts of Texas are seeing it even worse. Yesterday’s Drought Monitor placed parts of the Houston region into drought for the first time in quite some time. That’s why this weekend may seem a little out of place with our recent stretch of weather, as there will be bonafide rain chances for most of the area. However, because of the scattered nature of the rain this weekend, many of you seeking some water will be left thirsty once more. There are more rain chances in the forecast after this weekend, however.


There shall be no rain for today, however. Most areas should see sun to start today, but look for clouds to try and build in from the south this morning and afternoon. The chilly morning and some clouds will limit how warm we get today, with highs likely only in the mid or upper-50s.


For those of you trying to make outdoor plans for this weekend, basically, you’re going to have live with at least the chance of showers and storms all weekend. It’s unlikely to rain more than a few hours at a time in any given location, but trying to time exactly where and when it rains will be somewhat difficult in this setup.

For Saturday, I would expect to see showers and storms develop around sunrise southwest of Houston, toward Matagorda Bay or out along US-59 toward Victoria and Wharton. Those storms would spread north and east through the morning and into the afternoon. Not everyone will see rain all day on Saturday, and there’s a chance some folks may not see much rain at all. But for those that do see rain, it could be heavy, as the amount of moisture in the atmosphere this weekend will be near record levels for early January.

Anywhere you see blue or green on the map above indicates above normal to much above normal amounts of moisture in the atmosphere. Localized heavy downpours will be possible Saturday into Sunday. (Pivotal Weather)

So, localized street flooding is a definite possibility for those that see more persistent showers on Saturday.

In addition to the rain, severe weather is a possibility. While we are not expecting a significant severe weather outbreak, the atmosphere will be capable of allowing storms to briefly rotate on Saturday, which could lead to a couple tornado warnings in the area.

There will be a marginal (1/5) risk of severe weather tomorrow, primarily due to a brief, lower-end tornado threat from a few storms. Widespread severe weather is not expected. (NOAA)

The Storm Prediction Center has us in a “marginal” risk for severe weather, or level 1 of 5 on Saturday. I don’t want you to worry too much about this, but just be aware of the chance and stay plugged in this weekend.

Outside of the rain, look for lots of clouds and skyrocketing humidity. It will feel quite warm and humid by Saturday afternoon, with highs well into the 70s and overnight lows barely budging just under 70 degrees.

There is a definite signal in the models that we could see showers and storms persist or even expand on Saturday night into early Sunday morning, so that’s something to be aware of as well.


Modeling is all over the place on details for Sunday’s outlook but the story should be: A healthy chance of storms in the morning, followed by a cold front sometime Sunday afternoon or evening. Once again, heavy rain is possible in spots before this all slides to our east in the afternoon. In general, expect decreasing rain chances from about midday onward.

Expect a half-inch to an inch on average across the region, meaning some places will see more than that, while others could see a good bit less. The best odds of higher rain totals are along and south or east of US-59. (Pivotal Weather)

Once all is said and done, we should expect some places to see as much as 2 to 3 inches of rain or even a bit more, an average of about a half-inch to inch across the area, and, yes, certainly some folks that see less than that. It will be quite variable.

Sunday’s high temperatures could approach 80 degrees depending on how exactly things play out. This would be our first shot at 80 since way back on New Year’s Day.

Next week

Behind Sunday’s front, look for a return to more “Houston-winter” type weather. Morning lows on Monday should be in the 40s and low-50s, warm to near 60, and then drop into the 40s and 30s on Monday night. Expect another cool day Tuesday with highs only in the 50s and nighttime temperatures back into the 40s again. We will likely see another warming trend with more moisture back in the picture later next week. With that comes rain chances, but details are uncertain this far out.

As Eric has alluded to this week, I too am fairly optimistic that the next front should pass before next Sunday’s Houston Marathon. A lot can change between now and then, but if you’re looking for minimal humidity, you are setup nicely right now. I would anticipate race temperatures mostly in the 40s based on the current model scenarios, but again, it’s still a bit too soon to get too specific. Stay tuned!