After a stormy Tuesday, the rains should be over for now, as high pressure builds over Houston and somewhat drier air works its way into the region. For us, the next two big events to watch for are a tropical system in the Gulf of Mexico, and a much-anticipated cold front next week. Let’s discuss.
Wednesday through Friday
Building high pressure should lead to mostly sunny skies—look for highs in the upper 80s—along with warm nights with lows around 70 degrees. Aside from the late-summer like feel to the weather, we should have no concerns.
Saturday and Sunday
For now, the weekend simply looks pretty hot, with partly to mostly sunny skies and highs near 90 degrees. Lows should only fall to around 70 degrees. The good news is that after this weekend I’d say there’s only about a 50 percent chance of seeing another 90-degree day this year, so the end of summer really is nigh.
The caveat to this weekend’s forecast is the tropical system likely to form in the Gulf of Mexico, which could bring us some increased moisture and rain chances by Sunday—although for now I’d bet against that.
The timing isn’t certain, but we’re still on track for a cold front to swoop into Houston next week, probably some time on Tuesday morning. The front looks fairly strong, but because we’re still about six days away the forecast isn’t locked in stone. So please take the following temperature forecasts as guesses, rather than certainties. But for now, I’d expect most of Houston to fall down to the upper 50s for lows, if not colder, and areas further inland to see nights in the mid- or lower-50s. Dewpoints should be quite low, which will make the air feel much, much drier. High temperatures by the second half of next week might only be in the 70s.
By now you’ve probably seen the five-day forecast from the National Hurricane Center showing the likely formation of a tropical storm in the Gulf of Mexico this weekend.
We have to offer the usual caveats here, namely that without a well-defined center of circulation, it is difficult to forecast tracks for a tropical system. However, it seems most likely that this system will respond to the cold front next week by turning north toward Louisiana, or northeast toward the Panhandle of Florida. This is the solution favored by every member of the European model ensemble, and we have no reason right now to doubt the model.
There is some potential for this system to become a hurricane (perhaps a fairly strong one) by early next week, and we’ll have to watch it closely for impacts along the northern Gulf coast.