When the cold air blows through town on Friday, you might get the wrong impression that Spring is far away (only 20 miles from downtown Houston but that is an old joke I am sure many are familiar with). Actually, the chill in the air will be the proverbial "last gasp of winter". It will be cold enough Saturday night and Sunday evening for either frost or freeze threats, and you will need a jacket or sweater going out for the first half of the weekend. But by Sunday afternoon, the wind changes direction. And with it, we move on to the next chapter of the seasons.
Low pressure is forecast to dig into southern Colorado, then recurve northward toward the Soo Locks of Michigan/Ontario. With this feature creating an impressive pressure gradient between itself and the cold anticyclone retreating toward New England, temperatures and dewpoints in Texas will rebound very quickly. 60s (F) on Sunday will be followed by 70s (F) on President's Day. Showers and thunderstorms ahead of the associated cold front could be fairly heavy, but should be done with by later Monday night.
The beautiful day that I expect on Tuesday will NOT be representative of the week. The same routine emerges on Wednesday as yet another, stronger storm builds into southern Colorado and reverses the wind field off of the Gulf of Mexico. Showers and drizzle will move in Wednesday evening, and as the intense storm takes that favored Colorado/Trinidad "A" path, all kinds of weather mayhem will result. North of the low pressure center, strong winds and heavy snow will expand from the CO Front Range into the MN/WI Arrowhead" vicinity, then through parts of Ontario and Quebec. From the south central U.S. through the Old South, Ohio Valley and Mid-Atlantic region, heavy rain and the risk of severe thunderstorms are probable. There is some indication the broad disturbance could redevelop over the Delmarva Peninsula on February 21-22, and in so doing pose a threat for snow and ice in upstate New York and New England. Colder impacts in and around Texas behind the storm should be limited, since another important disturbance will take shape in the Desert Southwest by next weekend.
Yes, California and Arizona will have the chill, while Texas gets the thunderstorms and warmer temperatures.
Holiday Weekend Forecast
Friday: Partly cloudy, breezy, and colder. Highs 55 Corrigan to 59 Bayou Vista
Friday Night: A few sprinkles or sleet pellets possible in the evening; then clearing, breezy and very cold with potential for a hard freeze north and west of the city. Lows 28 Livingston to 32 Texas City
Saturday: Sunny and chilly. Highs 52 Shepherd to 56 Kemah
Saturday Night: Clear and cold with risk of frost or freeze conditions north and east of Houston. Lows 30 Cold Spring to 34 Bacliff
Sunday: Partly sunny, becoming very windy, and milder. Highs 63 Cleveland to 67 Seabrook
Sunday Night: Increasing cloudiness, windy and milder. Drizzle or showers possible by sunrise. Lows 51 Splendora to 55
Monday, Presidents Day: Variable cloudiness, windy, warmer and more humid. Showers and thunderstorms likely, some locally heavy. Highs 72 Channelview to 76 Roman Forest
Tuesday: Sunny and mild, but much less humid. High 70, Low 49
Wednesday: Increasing cloudiness, windy and more humid. Occasional showers and drizzle. High 75, Low 57
Thursday: Strong thunderstorms in the morning; clearing, breezy and cooler in the afternoon. Morning high 74, Evening low 52