Well, the furry rodents across the country have predicted an early spring. Regardless of what they say, spring officially arrives March 20 at 4:58 pm CT. Now, we have been seeing some spring-like weather as of lat with warm air arriving from the west and southwest. Certainly, this week has already seen high temperatures in the mid 70s across west Texas. So, highs have been well above the average mark for early February. Average high temperatures should be in the mid 50s, just for reference. Wind will continue to make the fire danger high this Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday for that matter. It will be sustained at 20-25 mph, with some gusts to 30 mph at times. That means that fires will spread very fast across the area. We're actually looking at cloud cover through the day today, which is not that common, especially when we are not going to see any rain.
Speaking of rain, the above, right picture is showing the precipitation outlook for February 12-18. The good news is that it's projecting near 40% shot at seeing above average precipitation during that time period. There was only a trace of precipitation in January and we have not seen anything close to that in February so far. That's especially bad for fires, but water levels continue to drop from area lakes and streams. We really need several days of rain, producing several inches of rain to really cut into the dryness and fight the deficit. The drought is starting to make a return, as well, especially north of Lubbock.
The above, left picture is showing the high temperature forecast for that same period, February 12-18. There is good news and bad news. The good news, is that it's expected to be very cold out there. The bad news is that the warmer weather will fade. This map is indicating that we here in west Texas will basically see near average temperatures. So, highs will likely be in the upper 50s, to mid 60s during those days, February 12-18. If you ask me, that's not at all bad for mid-to-late February. I am still anticipating us seeing at least one more snow event, likely in March, before we start to see even more warm air return in early April.