After such a hot and dry August, September’s wetter and cooler weather was a nice change. And from the way things look, North Texas is in for long stretch of agreeable weather moving into October.
Here are the numbers: Our average high was 84 while our average low was 64. Our warmest high temperature was 94 on the 7th, while our coolest low temperature (as of press time) was 52 on the 20th. Our day/night average temperatures worked out to a monthly average of 74, which was 2 degrees cooler than normal.
Rainfall was generous. Denton Enterprise Airport picked up 5.01″ on the first two days of September, another .76″ on the 9th, .13” on the 21st and 22nd, plus trace amounts on at least seven other days of the month, including the morning of the 28th, when a gusty cold front came through.
Total rainfall for September was 5.9 inches, which was over 3 inches wetter than normal. Running total for the year: 41.73″ which is over 3 inches above normal. Severe weather stayed away from Denton County in general, but a 49 mile-per-hour wind gust was recorded at the airport when the cold front blew through on the 28th.
The Climate Prediction Center is forecasting warmer and drier conditions for Texas and all of the Southwest during October. Not surprising, in that most of the western states have been suffering a prolonged drought and a terrible wildfire season. Conditions such as that tend to sustain themselves until something major, possibly an Alaskan storm system or a La Nina storm, breaks the pattern.
Please remember, as the jet streams repositions itself for Northern Hemisphere winter, we generally expect a few severe weather events during October.
La Nina conditions have returned with warmer-than-normal ocean temperatures in the central Pacific and are expected to intensify this winter. For Texas, a La Nina winter is generally a little warmer and drier than normal. Generally… but not always.
The La Nina winter of 2017-18 was the wettest winter season on record with nearly 17″ of rain. Also the Super bowl ice and sleet event, along with bitter cold and rolling power outages in early February of 2011 occurred in a La Nina winter. Finally, one of our colder winters with several ice and snow events took place during the La Nina of 1989.
The bottom line? We should plan for a warmer and drier winter, which could bring a few extreme winter events into North Texas. Sounds exciting.
Brad Barton is Chief Meteorologist of WBAP 820/570 KLIF and The Texas Rangers Baseball Club. Paul Ruekberg of NewsWatch Dallas contributed to this report.