Cold weather is heading to East Texas during Thanksgiving week
TEXAS, USA – For the rest of the week, the warmth of autumn simmers like a friendly side dish. But as we head toward Thanksgiving and the second half of the month, temperatures are dropping like the fate of Thanksgiving turkeys. Cold air is once again accumulating near the Arctic Circle and temperatures are showing single digits in northern Canada.
For now, this cold air remains trapped in bottles. However, the weather pattern shows signs of developing next week which could push some cold air toward Texas.
A weather pattern that could release cold air and send it south is shown on long-range forecast maps. It is a large area of high pressure building up over the Pacific Ocean.
Why will it get colder in Texas? A high pressure system near Alaska will prevent mild Pacific air from flowing into the western United States. Instead, the cold air currently over Canada will follow upper-level winds and extend into the central and southern United States. This weather pattern is referred to as the East Pacific Oscillation. Like other atmospheric oscillations, EPO has a positive phase and a negative phase. When the EPO enters the negative phase, cooler than average temperatures can be felt across much of the United States, and that appears to be the case for the next six to 10 days.
How cold is it at night and during the day? The 10-day forecast has the answer. Below-average temperature forecasts are associated with the last three days of the extended forecast. That’s when another batch of cold air is scheduled to arrive in East Texas. The cold air also brings more energy to the area, so there are expected to be several rain chances starting Sunday night.
Cold air diving south into the United States will make upper-level winds more wavy. This allows storms to form. Upper-level storms often create surface areas of low pressure that can pull cold fronts into areas of the central and southern Plains. Where cold, dry air collides with warm, more humid air, rain and thunderstorms form. This means we have a very good chance of seeing above average precipitation through the end of the Thanksgiving weekend.
There are signs of cooler air arriving between November 22nd and 27th. Cold air is often drier, so it stands to reason that in the same time period, we could see below-average precipitation. This evolving weather pattern is important because it provides another clue to the winter weather puzzle. We make our winter weather forecasts based on key features of a repeating weather pattern. We are getting closer to determining the length of this year’s weather cycle (LRC) and this will help us with our long-range forecasts through the winter.
We’ll know when those cold air waves will return and whether they’ll come with rain or if it’s cold enough to have a chance for ice or snow. Stay tuned, the winter weather journey is just beginning.