After things warm up considerably this week they’re going to turn very cold, probably just before the holiday.

The following outlook comes courtesy of Fred Schmude and Andrew Artzer, a pair of meteorologists with ImpactWeather:

Long-range data centered on late next week clearly identifies a strong cold front blasting by the Houston area mid to late day Wednesday bringing the coldest airmass so far this fall season. Some of the long range data identified this potential strong cold front about a week ago and it’s nice to see some good computer model agreement at the present time.

Since the airmass is Canadian/Arctic in nature, I would expect temperatures to quickly fall off behind the front and be severely underestimated by some of the computer models. Also, since computer models typically do a poor job in handling shallow cold arimasses, I would strongly favor an earlier arriving cold front rather than a later one.

With the front arriving sometime mid to late day on Wednesday expect mostly cloudy, breezy and much colder weather with temperatures falling into the upper 40s and 50s (possibly from near 80 during the day!) later in the day through the evening.

NW-N winds of 15-25 mph will make the temperatures feel even colder (offshore winds of 25 to 35 knots look likely with gusts to 45 knots+). Prefrontal showers and isolated thunderstorms along the front will be followed by off and on overrunning light rain behind the front.

On Thanksgiving Day expect cloudy, breezy and unseasonably cold weather with a chance of overrunning light rain. If the overrunning does materialize we will likely struggle to make 50 during the day after a morning low ranging anywhere from the upper 30s to mid 40s.

Temperatures by Fri morning will fall anywhere from the mid 30s to low 40s with highs (depending on cloud cover) reaching somewhere in the 50s. Overrunning light rain showers should terminate Fri morning followed by afternoon clearing based on some of the latest computer model guidance, which seems reasonable at this time.

If we do clear on Friday, we may see our first light freeze on the north and west side of Harris County by Saturday morning the 27th with lows ranging from 30 to 32F. We think the east and south side of Harris County will range from the mid to upper 30s for the most part Saturday morning with a few isolated spots possibly flirting with the freezing mark.

Temperatures by Saturday afternoon should recover back toward the lower 60s under sunny skies.

The forecasters caution that five- and six-day weather outlooks are still problematic, but the forecasts are consistently pointing to the arrival of a very strong front just prior to Thanksgiving.

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