2:00 PM CST | February 8, 2019
I wanted to discuss the long-range weather pattern this afternoon. I have been closely watching the trends later this month and wanted to break down what is happening and what will likely unfold. First off, I want to refer to a previous discussion over a week ago. In February 1st's post, I made the following statement:
"Looking ahead, the weather pattern after Valentine's Day favors colder than normal weather and some more opportunities for precipitation. This is not to say that nothing will happen between, but the signal for more changes and cold weather is fairly strong after Valentine's Day."
As I write this article, it has just now climbed into the mid-30*F's here in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro. Just to the south, a Winter Weather Advisory has been issued until 3:00 AM Saturday, where pockets of light snow/sleet accumulations are possible. I am not sure how many will want MORE cold weather, but here we go... Temperatures on Saturday will not be near as cold as they were last night and today, but it will not be until Monday when we really start to shake this cold. More rain is on the way this weekend and into early next week.
The part of the weather pattern that will cycle again right after Valentine's Day is related to what we observed in late December-early January and mid-November. Every other cycle tends to mirror each other more closely than consecutive ones. For time's sake, I will be referring to what we saw in mid-November - more specifically from the 8th through the 15th. The pattern has been cycling about 50-52 days apart, give or take. Two cycles later with a 50-day mean would equate to February 16th. A 51-day mean would be February 18th, and a 52-day mean would be February 20th. In other words, these bigger changes will most likely begin to occur in the February 16-20th period. For those who do not want more cold weather, you should have a few "springish" days just before these changes. Thereafter, colder temperatures are expected to return to the region again.
As mentioned a week ago, we will have some opportunities for moisture during this upcoming part of the cycle. I will give you an example. In each of the past two cycles, we saw a cut-off low form over Texas and Oklahoma toward the end of the period. You can see this in January 4th's discussion. If you are short on time today, we saw this late November 13th and again on January 3rd. Increasing lift ahead of the system brought Dallas-Fort Worth about .25" of rain November 11-12th. Average temperatures during that time were 13.5 degrees BELOW normal. It was very close, but the winter weather passed just to the north of the metroplex. It was the first Winter Storm of the season for the Southern Plains. This is just one of the opportunities we will have for moisture with the cold air later this month. We will have to watch for a similar type of system late this month, probably in the 21st to 25th period. Could we see another winter storm? We will have to see how all of this sets up in the days ahead. Seasonal differences in the jet stream and the degree of blocking to our north at the time will have an influence on it. It could prove more or less favorable for winter weather. Regardless, winter is not yet over and neither is the cold. Stay tuned and check back for updates.