Weak Cold Front Approaches Sunday; Annular Solar Eclipse Sunday, May 20th, Evening Hours 5/19/12
CBS7 PinPoint Weather Center Meteorologist Juan Acuņa 5/19/12
Another very warm day, with above normal temperatures, has unfolded across the Permian Basin for Saturday as we saw mostly sunny skies across the region. A few clouds have popped up to our eastern counties and those will continue off in that general direction giving us mostly clear skies this evening.
There is a weak cold front that has moved into the Panhandle of Texas and will continue to dive southward into the Permian Basin and generally switch our winds to a more easterly flow.
For now, it appears the front will stall just north of the IH-10 area and begin to push back to the north as a warm front. As this occurs, there could be some isolated showers and thunderstorms develop across the area, especially in the higher elevations around the Davis Mountains. I do think most of the heavier rainfall activity will occur to our north and east. However, isolated amounts from a trace to two tenths of inch can be seen across the Permian Basin.
Coincidentally, there will be an Annular Solar Eclipse Sunday evening with the "maximum eclipse" visible just before the sun sets around the 8:42PM time frame for Midland/Odessa. Area local cities should be able to start viewing about the same time with a few minutes lag. Partial eclipse viewing will occur an hour prior to this spectacular event, so the event should start to unfold at the 7:30PM time frame. This annular solar eclipse is a bit different from a regular solar eclipse in that the new moon will cover the sun, but not entirely. There will still be a bright ring, or Annulus, of the sun that will still be visible and can be quite dangerous to look directly at it. The best way to view is to simple not look directly at the Sun. Looking away will still give a perspective of the event. Solar glasses are usually the best way to view. Also, if you get a piece of paper and prick a small hole in the paper it will act as a tiny lense, projecting a miniscule image of the sun onto the pavement. There will be a solar eclipse viewing party in front of the Blakemore Planetarium on Sunday at 7PM and is open to the public and solar glasses will also be provided.
The tricky part is that we are expecting a few showers and some isolated storms to be in the area; though models do suggest some clearing just in time to view.
Beyond Monday, a dry and hot weather pattern takes over the Basin and temperatures will approach the 100 degree mark by mid-week and chances of rain dwindle greatly.