For the second time this December (and mind you, it's only the 7th day of the month) we are looking at the possibility of hitting 80°. Normal high for this time of the year -- 64°. That means this weekend we'll be running a good 15° or so above the average for early December.
No worries -- we are about to see a big pattern change that is going to blast in winter-like temperatures. Instead of being "abnormally warm" we are going to find temperatures 15° or more BELOW the average for this time of the year.
Cold Front's A' Comin'
The jet stream (our main storm track) has been running west to east across the country these past couple of days. This "Zonal Flow" has done two things: 1) moved any disturbances, rain and snow directly across the country and 2) kept the cold Canadian and Arctic air locked up in the northern states.
That zonal flow is going to undergo a major shift as a trough of low pressure kinks the jet stream over the weekend and drag down a big batch of cold air from up north. Until that cold front gets here, highs will be on the warm and humid side -- topping off near 80°.
As that cold front comes crashing into the Brazos Valley late Sunday afternoon / into the evening hours, it will spark up our chance to see a line of showers and thunderstorms push through the area. (30% to 40% chance) Should these storms really line up along this cold front, they could be on the strong side with gusty winds upwards of 40mph. Don't expect these storms to linger however -- this will be a pretty quick moving cold front that will end the storm chance as soon as it passes by.
Much colder and drier air comes rushing into the Brazos Valley Sunday night / early Monday morning. We'll have to watch the timing of this front (models continue to waffle between Sunday afternoon and evening) to see exactly how low temperatures will tank by Monday morning. Should the front come in sooner, we'll be looking at more 30s by daybreak Monday. If it is a slightly later passage, then temperatures could still be in the low 40s by Monday morning. Either way, with howling north winds, wind chills could be as low as the 20s and low 30s to start your new work and school week off.
Keeping the Cold
With blustery north winds on Monday, highs will struggle to make 50° in many locations and wind chills will only allow it to feel like the upper 30s to low 40s. Once the skies clear and winds calm by Monday night, we could be looking at our first official freeze for Bryan / College Station (as recorded at Easterwood Airport). Latest computer models suggest that we could see freezing temperatures again by Wednesday morning as well. We aren't talking about a hard freeze, but we do expect temperatures to make it into the 30° to 32° range by the start of business on Tuesday -- outlying areas could be down into the upper 20s.
Use this warmer weekend to prep for the cold weather. We'll continue to keep you updated through the weekend as we tweak the forecast, but one thing looks certain...winter time is finally coming back to the Brazos Valley.
Details on the forecast can always be found by following along on Twitter.