Driest November in 115 years
After being teased with seemingly abundant rain during the first half of 2012, the weather turned drastically drier across Central Texas during meteorological fall without a single drop of rain in the Austin metro area for the month of November.
It has happened previously...but not recently. This year ranks alongside three other Novembers when the Austin rain gauge read empty:
1. 0.00" – 1861, 1894, 1897, 2012
2. Trace – 1896, 1903, 1970
3. 0.01" – 1949
4. 0.02" – 1927
5. 0.03" – 1950
Since October, only .96" has fallen in the Capitol City.
Meteorologists consider the months of September, October, and November the fall season, or "meteorological fall." December 1 therefore marks the beginning of meteorological winter. Calendar or astronomical winter, on the other hand, arrives on the Winter Solstice, December 22nd.
This fall, a total of 6.66" of rain fell in Austin, which is 3.19" below the 30-year average or what we call "normal."
Last fall, Austin collected even less. 5.28" of rain fell, a deficit of 4.55"
In the fall of 2010, Tropical Storm Hermine drenched our region with record rains. The seasonal total ended up at 13.96" in Austin, a surplus of 4.40".
Looking ahead, NOAA’s outlook for the cold season trends more mild than last winter, and we believe a weak El Nino and flip in the North Atlantic Oscillation will play key roles.
For Texas, the forecast calls for warmer-than-norm temps yet precipitation trends are less than certain.
A weak El Nino in the Pacific may bounce sea surface temperature back up, enhancing the subtropical jet stream's flow of moisture into the Lone Star State. It's one of the many teleconnections the YNN weather team will continue to monitor as colder climes return.
Watch for updates on the Long Range Forecast, found each hour at :48 past on 'Weather on the Eights.'