Could December bring much needed rain?

November is one of our transition months when our average temperatures make significant changes.  Our average high/low temperatures drop from 73/51 at the first of the month to 61/41 on the last day.

Finally in November, we can wait two to three weeks between lawn mowings.  The trees finally turn and leaves begin to fall.  We generally have our first killing freeze around the middle of the month. 

For Denton, our first freeze was early although within the normal two-week variance.  We dropped to 26 degrees on November 4th.  Other unusually cold mornings were November 27th (29), the 28th (22), the 29th (31) and the 30th (29).  DFW Airport did not record an official freeze until the 29th. 

Between those freezes at the beginning and end of the month, we had some unusually warm temperatures with highs reaching the 80’s on the 13th, 14th and 15th. 

Rainfall continued to disappoint.  Historically, Denton has received an average of 2.5” to 2.7” of rain during a normal November.  This month, we barely reached half our normal rainfall quota.  We had rains of .12” on the 7th, .02” on the 8th, .20” on the 20th, .87” on the 21st and .05” on November 26th. 

Severe weather threatened Denton on November 20th and 21st but the only significant wind and hail reports came from Cooke and Grayson Counties. 

For the year, North Texas in general is running 11”-13” behind on normal rainfall.  Water could be critically short in many areas next spring when fire season returns.      

As dry as the air and ground were, North Texas experienced several 3-day periods in which high and low temperatures varied by 40 degrees.  Our normal daily variance is about 20 degrees. 

Not to raise false hopes, but the latest long-range predictions are noting a weakening of the La Nina pattern of cooler-than-normal ocean temperatures in the central Pacific.  If the pattern continues to hold its current ‘neutral’ position, we could be looking at more frequent rain events such as the one that crossed North Texas during the first weekend of December. 

The extra moisture would be welcome, but it could also mean more winter storms here.  It’s always something, isn’t it? 

Brad Barton is Chief Meteorologist of WBAP 820 AM/96.7 FM and Founder of warning technologies. Paul Ruekberg of Newswatch Dallas contributed to this report.


Brad Barton
Brad Barton
Brad Barton is Chief Meteorologist of WBAP 820/570 KLIF/99.5 “The Wolf” and the Texas Rangers Baseball Club. Read his column on Denton County weather each month in The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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