ARCTIC BLAST: Coldest air, snow chances for Bastrop Co. Tuesday night


Chew on this: It’s colder in Bastrop County right now than it is in Anchorage, Alaska.

Temperature gauges at the Giddings-Lee County Airport are measuring 31 degrees Tuesday afternoon (compared to Anchorage’s 43), and it will only get chillier as evening sets in, when the coldest air from an Arctic blast that plunged southward from Canada envelops Central Texas, the National Weather Service said.

To boot, there is a chance that Bastrop County could see a mix of light freezing rain and snow Tuesday night. The National Weather Service issued a special weather statement for 16 south central Texas counties until 6 p.m. warning of ice and snow, which could accumulate on bridges and overpasses making driving difficult.

Lows Tuesday night are forecast at 21 degrees, and while not record-setting, it is some of the coldest weather the region has seen in a year, weather service meteorologist Brett Williams said. The Austin area at 4 p.m. is going on 47 consecutive hours of sub-freezing temperatures, and it isn’t expected to let up anytime soon, Williams said.

A hard freeze warning is in effect for the county until noon Wednesday, meaning sub-freezing temperatures are imminent and highly likely, according to forecasters.

The weather service has urged people to bring pets and sensitive plants inside overnight and wrap any exposed outside pipes. And bundle in layers — people without proper clothing and protection are at risk for hypothermia.

Meteorologists expect cloudy skies will clear overnight, bringing sunshine Wednesday, when temperatures are expected to ramp back up to what now seems a warm 48 degrees in the day after the long freeze.

“We are still gong to have low temperatures below freezing the next three nights,” Williams said.

Here are some highlights for the rest of the week:

Wednesday: Sunny with a high near 48 and a low around 24.

Thursday: Mostly sunny with a high near 47 and a low around 28.

Friday: Sunny with a high near 53 and a low around 36.

Saturday: Mostly cloudy with a slim chance of evening rain. High temperatures could reach 58 with a low around 48.



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