A foggy groundhog morning

Photo from Click2pins showing fog from Lynette Zardenetta

I guess this is a case of “pick your groundhog” for today as any furry forecaster in Houston faced a foggy morning: so no shadow means an early spring! On the other hand, the more famous and fawned over Punxsutawney Phil DID see his shadow in the early Pennsylvania morning declaring six more weeks of winter. If you don’t recall, that shadow tells Phil to get back in his hovel and prepare for more cold.

The yearly gathering to witness Phil's forecast from the Trib Live

You can see the full 15-minute video right here! Phil has ‘been around’ since 1887 forecasting the future but you may have heard the sad news that in New Jersey, Milltown Mel, a groundhog rival of 10 years, passed away Sunday, canceling the forecasting festivities there. NBC has a full report. No word on what took the lil fella, but there was no understudy to fill in. And I don’t know Mel’s record for predicting correctly, but Phil boasts 40%.

From my Groundhog blog last year: “What you might not know is this all started around the Christian holiday, Candlemas, which is Feb. 2. They even had a saying regarding the weather and Candlemas:

If Candlemas be fair and bright,

Come, winter, have another flight;

If Candlemas brings clouds and rain,

Go winter, and come not again.”

You can refresh your trivia with the full blog here.

Here’s what the humans say

As you know by now, we are watching winter move in starting tomorrow with cold temperatures Friday and Saturday. We’ve seen colder here, but much of the state to our northwest will have ice and snow, so if you have travel plans to Austin, Dallas, or points west check the roads before you go!

We warm up a tad by Sunday although we stay on the cool side the next week (60s for highs and 40s for lows) with another cold snap possible mid-month.

Another cold snap possible mid month around February 15th

Don’t give up hope on an early spring, despite what any groundhog tells you. March to May is still forecast for us to be above-normal for temperatures:

courtesy NOAA

Enjoy the day and get ready for a bit of Old Man Winter!

Frank

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About the Authors:

KPRC 2's chief meteorologist with three decades of experience forecasting Houston's weather.

Amanda Cochran is an Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist. She specializes in Texas features, consumer and business news and local crime coverage.