This is one of those weekends when the sky could mess with a good time.
Numerous events of the kind usually held in late spring – the Untapped Festival, University of Texas softball, the high school state track and field championships, Jmblya 2016 Austin – will be under threat of thunderstorms. Saturday will actually be mostly sunny, but it also carries with it a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms and rain, according to the National Weather Service’s forecast on Friday night. By Saturday evening the weather should be mostly cloudy, with a 30 percent chance of thunderstorms.
Those odds of rain and thunderstorms rise to 50/50 on Sunday. Remember, a 50 percent chance of rain means that there are even odds that rain will fall on a given place during the 12-hour period.
(I’m giving a 20 percent chance of headlines along the lines of, “Rain doesn’t dampen the spirits of festival goers …”)
This has been a weird last six months — we miss you, Mark Murray! — and State Climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon says there is some evidence that Texas weather has gotten more extreme. But the severe weather that could hit Saturday is not out of character for Central Texas this time of year. May is the month with the most severe weather: thunderstorms, hail and tornadoes. And remember, Mercury is in retrograde, which could means this weekend is going to be unlucky or could mean absolutely nothing at all, depending on whether you believe astrologers or scientists.
Sick of the rain? Well, that’s understandable. The Highland Lakes, primary reservoirs in the Austin area, area nearly full, and the ground is saturated. But don’t get too used to it. Summer is probably also going to be mild. But this fall, when the El Niño weather pattern in the Pacific gives way to a La Niña, we could slip back to the days of the hot and dry.