Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Houston/Galveston, TX
FXUS64 KHGX 241508
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Houston/Galveston TX
908 AM CST Fri Feb 24 2017
Minor changes to the forecast this morning to account for current
observations and short term model guidance. The cold front that is
just northwest of Burleson to Houston county line, will reach
these northern counties late this morning. This front will be a
dry one, with no precip out ahead of it. Northwesterly winds will
follow behind the front, helping to usher in drier air and cooler
temperatures. Expecting the front to move in a little faster based
off the short term model guidance. The front should clear the
coast by 00Z, early this evening. The cooler temperatures will lag
behind the wind shift by a few hours, and should begin to see the
dip in temperatures slightly before midnight.
Otherwise, should see high temperatures reach into the lower to mid
80s late this afternoon. Clear skies will prevail for much of the
day, as the current sheet of stratocumulus clouds push off the
coast this morning.
.PREV DISCUSSION... /ISSUED 522 AM CST Fri Feb 24 2017/
To open the period, winds will be somewhat confused as a gravity
wave or bore looks to be moving across the area, briefly shifting
winds to northwesterly. The shift at CLL was quite strong, but
impacts on stations downstream have been more subtle. In the first
hour or two, do show a hint of this in the Houston metro sites,
but for now will leave LBX and GLS out.
Other than that, have stripped fog out, as low stratus seems to
be the victor tonight as winds have not decreased much. SGR did
briefly see IFR visibility, but it seems to have quickly passed.
Ceilings should rise later in the morning, and the focus for the
rest of the forecast will be in handling gustiness and veering of
winds as the front moves through.
MARINE... Southerly winds have been very slow to come down
overnight, and SCECs are now in place for the bays and nearshore
waters until early morning, and into the mid-morning for the
offshore zones. Additionally, stronger winds have necessitated a
brief small craft advisory through mid-morning. Advisory winds are
being measured in the lower 20-60 nm zone, and with winds around
20 knots in the 0-20 nm waters farther up the coast, will go ahead
and do both of the offshore zones in an abundance of caution,
though the upper zone is very marginal.
After coming down a bit, winds should stiffen again in the wake
of a cold front passing through the area tonight, and may even
flirt with advisory levels again. Beyond that, much of the next
several days looks to see winds near or at SCEC levels for at
least the offshore zones. An advisory may be needed in the middle
of next week as gusty northeasterly winds and building seas are
expected in the wake of yet another front.
Cooler, but significantly drier air will follow a cold front
across the area this afternoon. Relative humidity will at least
flirt with RFW thresholds late afternoon, and in localized areas
in the west, should meet them easily. Fortunately, winds should
fall short. A similar story tomorrow with humidity near or just
above warning thresholds, but weaker winds are expected as high
pressure works in. Additionally, while the low humidity may dry
very fine fuels, recent rains should keep heavier fuels in the
wettest 50 percentiles for both fuel moisture and (predictably)
ERC. Bottom line: weather factors may support more vigorous
burning for fires in exclusively grassy fuels for the next couple
of days. But generally wetter fuels and a lack of stronger winds
should mitigate a serious fire weather threat.
.PRELIMINARY POINT TEMPS/POPS...
College Station (CLL) 79 43 62 44 71 / 10 0 0 10 30
Houston (IAH) 84 48 67 44 73 / 10 0 0 10 20
Galveston (GLS) 79 55 65 57 71 / 10 0 0 10 10
GM...Small Craft Advisory until noon CST today for the following
zones: Waters from Freeport to the Matagorda Ship Channel
from 20 to 60 NM...Waters from High Island to Freeport from
20 to 60 NM.