December do-over?

And the tropics are busy?

Photo over the weekend from The Allure cruise ship in Galveston (Harry Brinkman, Copyright 2022 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved.)

Warm, foggy weather seems to be stuck over the area these days and if it reminds you of last December there’s a good reason. Just a year ago we had our warmest December on record!

Here’s a look at the daily data from Bush/IAH airport:

IAH/Bush airport daily data from last December

No less than eight record highs fell in that one month alone! Remarkably, the lowest it dropped to was 40° while the minimum high temperature was only 58°.

And while Houston’s official high temperature averaged 76.9°, more than 10 degrees above the average, the state of Texas had its warmest December month in 130 years, according to John Nielsen-Gammon, the state climatologist. You can read more on that right here.

So will this December be a do-over of last December?

We’re certainly off to a mild start with 70s to near-80 forecast through NEXT Tuesday! Check out the American model for the state and you’ll see plenty of warm ‘orange’ colors for Southeast Texas:

American Model courtesy of

While we are on the subject of out-of-season weather, the National Hurricane Center has give a 40% chance for development to a system in the Atlantic:

This map shows a 30% chance the next 48 hours for tropical development, but there is a 40% chance the next five days!

While there was a subtropical December system in 2013, you’d really have to go back to 2007 to find a true December tropical storm. That’s when Tropical Storm Olga formed Dec. 11 and dissipated the 17. Olga caused 40 deaths and $45 million in damage, before moving into the Gulf of Mexico. There it was absorbed into a cold front eventually becoming part of a major winter storm that affected the Eastern Seaboard!

courtesy National Hurricane Center

If this December storm does form, it will be Owen (also an “O” storm!) but is expected to move northeast across the Atlantic.

Have a good week! Not much rain until the weekend.


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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.