AUSTIN (KXAN) — Continued wall-to-wall sunshine and a warm southwest wind will mean many communities top 80 degrees this afternoon. Highs as warm as the lower 80s are expected in the Austin metro and some locations in the Hill Country.
- Camp Mabry daily record: 83º (1976)
- ABIA daily record: 81º (1976)
A weak cold front will swing our winds back to a cooler northerly direction tomorrow, dropping highs into the 70s Friday and the upper 60s Saturday. A few clouds return to the sky this weekend along with a slight chance of light morning drizzle for Austin Marathon runners on Sunday, as temperatures begin warming slightly for Valentine’s Day.
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With only .34 inch of rain at Camp Mabry so far in 2016, this is the driest start to any year since 1988, and the 11th driest on record (since 1891). What is even more unusual is that a strong El Niño pattern remains in place in the Pacific Ocean: a phenomenon that was forecast to bring Central Texas a cold and wet winter. The opposite has been true.
It is too early to write off the El Niño though, as wet and stormy weather remains likely by springtime as fluctuations in the ocean pattern take place. In fact, the current pattern is lasting longer and peaking later than the strongest El Niño on record in 1997-98.
Read more about our dry winter here.
The Climate Prediction Center is forecasting colder and wetter than normal weather to return during late February, and possibly last through the spring months.