AP NEWS

Next few days to bring taste of summer

April 7, 2019

HARLINGEN — Remember those cold nights when the rattling north wind had you fumbling with the thermostat to switch from cool to heat, or feeling the soft caress from the lovely fleece you found hidden deep in the closet?

That relationship is so over.

A sharp spike in temperatures over the next five days will bring scorching heat as summertime weather makes its rude re-entry into the Rio Grande Valley.

“ Our normal high right now is the low 80s, low to mid-80s,” Chris Birchfield, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Brownsville, said yesterday.

“ We’re definitely getting into a warmer pattern but we do have a trough moving through this weekend which we’re probably going to be waving to it to our north, and there is a chance of some rain tonight into Saturday, both day and night,” he added yesterday. “But overall, we’re going to be warming up and we’re going to be well above normal the next several days.”

Temperatures today will hit 86 to 94, with the cooler spots as usual along the coast. Highs will remain in the low 90s until the middle of next week, when they bloom into the mid-90s and on Wednesday all the way to 98 degrees in some inland areas.

That high, for perspective on that date, would be 10 to 15 degrees above the normal average temperature here in the Valley.

“ If you look toward next week a ridge starts to build overhead and some of the troughs are well to our north so that’s why we’re going to be continuing to warm,” Birchfield said. “And then you’ve got lower moisture because of the ridge. So, yes, we’re going to be into a warming pattern.”

Whether this early hot spell signals an early start to summer is impossible to predict, he said.

“ If you look at the three-month outlook (by the Climate Prediction Center), we are in a slightly higher probability of higher temperatures for the three-month outlook,” he added.

This coming week across the West, cities that will experience their hottest weather so far this year — possibly even breaking the 100-degree mark — include Riverside, California; Albuquerque, New Mexico; St. George, Utah; El Paso, Texas; Phoenix and Las Vegas.

rkelley@valleystar.com