Author: Matt Lanza

Soggy at times this weekend; watching tropics

Posted by Matt Lanza at 6:02 AM

As Eric has been conveying, this weekend is not going to be the most optimal for the Houston area. We’ve got rain chances in abundance. Thankfully, we don’t anticipate any serious problems from the rain, but if you have outdoor plans this weekend, you may need some alternative options. Let’s walk through it.

Today

Yesterday saw a good bit of rain mostly south of the metro area, down toward Wharton and Angleton and west toward Brookshire, with a few storms here and there elsewhere.So far, quiet this morning, with just a few showers down in Matagorda County. As the day goes on, I would expect scattered showers and storms to fire up with daytime heating, beginning at the coast and spreading inland. Not everyone will see rain, but those that do could pick up a quick half-inch to inch of rain in a cooling downpour.

Expect highs near 90°, but a little cooler if it happens to rain a bit more at your location.

Weekend & Monday

So, let’s start with this: I don’t think this weekend will be a complete washout. If you have outdoor plans, I might not completely abandon them. But I would absolutely have an alternative in place. I think Saturday may be a better day than Sunday, unless you live northwest of Houston. It won’t rain all the time and everywhere this weekend, but where it does rain, it may be heavy at times with some patchy street flooding possible.

Who are we expecting to see the most rain on which day? There will be a weak cold front draped inland over Texas. No, it won’t usher in cool, dry air, but it will act as a focal point for the rains. On Saturday it may be well north and west of the city, out toward Columbus and north to College Station and over into Walker or Madison Counties. By Sunday, it creeps closer to Houston.

The NWS rainfall forecast through Sunday evening is just shy of 1″ on average in most of the Houston area, but there’s a better chance at over an inch both along the immediate coast and northwest of the city. (Weather Bell)

I still think the focus of showers on Sunday may be to the northwest of Houston, but perhaps out toward Katy and up to The Woodlands and toward Livingston, so a bit closer. So it’s conceivable that both days, the majority of the rainfall stays northwest of the Houston area. We’ll still see some scattered showers and storms regardless though.

On Monday that front may creep through the area while falling apart. So, again, scattered to numerous showers and storms with daytime heating, now across the Houston area. Look for temperatures to top off in the upper-80s most days on average (90+ if you don’t see rain, cooler if you see a good deal of it), with lows in the mid-70s.

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After a wild Labor Day that saw Galveston and coastal communities see upwards of five to ten inches of rain or more, we’re starting with more rain down that way today. But we do have good news for those ready for a break.

Today

Radar this morning as of showed a narrow band of heavy rain pointed onshore across Galveston Island and the southwest end of the Bolivar Peninsula, now inland as of 5:50 AM to about League City. Additional moderate to heavy rain had prompted another Flash Flood Warning just outside of Port Arthur.

Radar as of 5:50 AM showed heavy rain southeast of Houston, just inland from Galveston, along with steady rain just west of Port Arthur. (GRLevel3)

Some of the rain near Port Arthur may try and come a bit west, so folks on the east side of I-45 could see a steady moderate to occasionally heavy rain for a time. Locally heavy rain will continue at times near Galveston, which could cause some relapse in street flooding again. A Flash Flood Watch is posted for the coastal counties through today.

Further inland, including most of Houston, we’ll see a smattering of showers and thunderstorms around the region this morning and afternoon. Look for gradual improvement later today. Clouds and showers will hold back temperatures once again. We only hit 78° officially on Labor Day, our coolest day since the Fourth of July, and only the second time we’ve failed to hit 80 degrees since late April. It feels like it’s been hot forever. Who’s ready for a cold front? We’re looking hard for one, but alas, we don’t see much chance of that happening over the next ten days or so at least.

Wednesday & Thursday

Both days look like a return to more typical late summer weather, with a daily shower and storm chance driven by the sea breeze off the Gulf and daytime heating, so mostly of the hit or miss variety. Any storms will be capable of heavy downpours of course, but coverage should be fairly average for this time of year; a bit less intense than we’ve seen the last couple days. Look for mid- or upper-80s where we see some storms on those days and upper-80s to low-90s in drier locations.

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Starting close to home and working outward this afternoon: Heavy rain to the tune of 6-10″ or more along the immediate coast has caused flooding from Freeport through Galveston to High Island. As of early afternoon, High Island had seen over 11 inches of rain, Jamaica Beach had seen north of ten inches, and Galveston was nearing seven inches so far. This has created waterlogged scenes in Galveston today.

So what’s to come?

Radar as of 1:30 PM today shows heavy rain gradually diminishing in intensity along the coast and inland.

The heaviest rains from this morning have subsided. Periods of rain and a few isolated downpours will continue into the middle and late afternoon. (College of DuPage)

Expect rain to generally wind down here, though some isolated heavier downpours or thunderstorms will be possible into late afternoon. But those would be the exception rather than the rule. Continued residual street flooding is likely to continue in Galveston and generally along the coast.

Tonight

Another round of rain is possible, especially south and east of Houston, so the flooding threat, while perhaps not as great as today, will not quite trend to zero. There’s still a bit of uncertainty in how much rain falls and exactly where, but in general, another inch or two seems possible along the coast, with lesser amounts inland from tonight through tomorrow afternoon.

Over the next 24 hours, an additional few inches of rain will be possible along the coast, with lesser amounts inland. (NWS Houston)

Things do look to quiet down around here for the middle of the week, though rain chances don’t quite get to zero. More on that tomorrow.

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Wet weekend at times, tropics “noise” continues

Posted by Matt Lanza at 5:49 AM

Thursday saw another mixed bag of weather, with some folks seeing heavy rainfall and others seeing not much of anything. We should replay that program today before better odds of rain and storms return this weekend.

Today

Expect at least a handful of showers and thunderstorms today. Not everyone will get rain, but those that do could see some heavier downpours. In terms of coverage, it will probably be similar to or less than what we saw yesterday, with the best chances the closer you get to the coast. Today probably carries the lowest rain chances of the next several days.

Temperatures will range from the upper-80s where you see showers to the low-90s further inland with drier weather more likely.

Holiday weekend

We’ll see another disturbance about 20,000 feet up migrate toward us this weekend. What does that mean? It means gradually increasing rain and storm chances again. Saturday shouldn’t be a washout, but there will be a few more showers and storms than we saw yesterday and will see today. Sunday may be when the more widespread showers and storms impact us. Some of the rain on Sunday could be locally heavy. Additional widely scattered showers and storms will remain with us for Labor Day.

Rainfall through Sunday evening should average close to a half-inch, with higher amounts likely in spots, especially south and east of Houston. (NWS)

Best course of action this weekend? Have a rain plan ready to implement if you’ve got any outdoor activities. In some cases, you won’t need to use it, but given the erratic nature of rainfall in these setups, it would be good to have a plan to turn to. We don’t expect any serious flooding this weekend, but as is almost always the case in Southeast Texas storm setups, locally heavy rainfall could lead to brief, localized street flooding in areas of poor drainage.

Also worth noting, the tropical thunderstorms this weekend could be capable of producing funnel clouds or brief waterspouts, especially in the morning near the coast. Just something to keep in mind if you’ll be at the beach this weekend.

Expect temperatures in the upper-80s most days, with low 90s inland if rainfall doesn’t materialize quite as much as anticipated.

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