We had a mix of clouds and sunshine today, with the sunshine winning out by mid afternoon, which has helped us warm into the upper 70s and low 80s. The big reason we’re so warm is the persistent westerly flow coming down off the mountains that has dropped our relative humidity and warmed us up. We’ve also seen some decent wind gusts, with Artesia and Carlsbad getting gusts in the 40-45 MPH range, but in the Permian Basin, it’s been mostly 25-35 MPH wind gusts. Tonight we’ll see winds calm down a bit, so if dinner on the patio is in your Valentine’s plans, you’re in luck as it will be above 60 degrees through at least 11 PM.
The same can't be said for the mountains, and the West Texas Winds will continue ripping through the night and into tomorrow. Gusts up to 70 MPH in the Guadalupes are possible through tomorrow evening, so do be careful if you have any end of week mountain travel plans. We could see some advisories issued for the plains east of the mountains tomorrow afternoon for gusts of 50 MPH, and here in the Permian Basin, we could see widespread gusts around 45 MPH. That said, we should still warm up to around 80 degrees yet again to wrap up the work week.
A cold front will nose in from the NE on Saturday, so morning lows in Borden, Scurry, and Mitchell Counties could dip into the low 40s and maybe even the upper 30s while the rest of us stay right around 50 degrees. Westerly flow will win out and we should all warm back to the mid to upper 70s in the afternoon. Could see more strong gusts, especially out west, but even 35-40 MPH gusts aren't out of the question yet again here in Midland and Odessa.
Big changes come Sunday through Tuesday as a parade of cold fronts take their turn knocking down temperatures back to well below average. Some moisture associated with a system sweeping south out of British Columbia could coincide with our coldest temperatures, so a chance of wintry precipitation can’t be ruled out Tuesday morning and afternoon. Nothing to fret over quite yet, but make sure to keep an eye on the forecast as we get closer.