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Saturday, January 12, 2013

Bracing For A Bitter Blast!

By Gene Norman


Even though its been cloudy, gusty southerly winds have boosted temperatures into the 70s.  Not quite a record (which is 81°), but plenty balmy for early January.  In weather, there's a saying: "what goes up, must come down".  Whenever I see extreme temperatures in one direction, they're usually quickly followed by the reverse.  That will be the case tonight as a strong cold front pushes across Southeast Texas.  It's easy to spot the front on this map of temperatures late this afternoon:


It stretches from Texarkana to San Angelo.  Dallas is in the 50s, while we swelter (relatively speaking) in the 70s.  Storms are expected to break out along the front and yes, it still means that Houston Marathon runners should expect at least a wet course, even though it might not be raining at the starting gun.  They should also NOT expect it to feel anywhere near as mild Sunday morning.  Be sure to bundle up because a big drop in temperatures will be accompanied by very gusty winds out of the northwest.  Here's a forecast for rainfall totals by 7 am Sunday:


The light and dark green represent totals between 1" to 1.5" the light blue represents .5" to 1" amounts.

Even after the front clears sometime in the late afternoon, upper-level winds will continue to stream clouds over the cold surface air.  This "over-running" pattern is familiar; we've seen it since before Christmas.  While we we'll flirt with freezing temperatures most of this week, it'll be cold-to-the-bone simply because it won't get out of the 40s for several days in a row.  Stock up on soup and get ready to fire up the furnace again.

Finally, a check on New England weather shows a cool afternoon in store tomorrow when the Texans tangle with (and beat) the Patriots.  At game time, it will be in the upper 40s with the mercury slipping to the low 40s by the fourth quarter.  Breezy and cloudy in Foxboro, but rain shouldn't be an issue.


TONIGHT: Cloudy, windy and balmy early with showers and thunderstorms developing by midnight.  Some storms could become strong with gusty wind the main threat. By daybreak, gusty northwest winds build in 15-25 mph. Temperatures fall from the 60s to the low 50s by early Sunday morning.

NORMAN NUMBER FOR SUNDAY: 3
SUNDAY: Much colder and windier with lingering morning rain tapering off by mid-morning.  Skies remain mostly cloudy for the rest of the day.  Temperatures hover in the mid to upper 40s with gusty north winds 15-20 mph, making for wind chills in the upper 30s.

NORMAN NUMBER FOR MONDAY: 4
MONDAY: Cloudy, cold and raw with morning temperatures in the mid 30s.  Keep the umbrella handy as there may be a few periods of light rain by late afternoon increasing into the evening.  Highs in the mid to upper 40s. Steady north wind 10-15 mph.

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And oh yeah - GO TEXANS!!!

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