Precipitation for July varied from much above to much below normal across west-central Texas (Figure 1).
Figure 1: Percent of Normal Precipitation for July, 2014.
The monthly precipitation was well-above normal across parts of the northern and eastern sections west-central Texas (dark blue and purple shading). Monthly rainfall for these locations (not shown) was between 4 and 8 inches. The monthly amounts were well below normal (less than 50 percent of normal) across parts of the western Big Country, Concho Valley, Northern Edwards Plateau, and Northwest Hill country. For these locations, monthly rainfall amounts (not shown) were less than one inch.
Temperatures averaged slightly above normal for the month.
At Abilene Regional Airport, the average temperature for July was 83.5 degrees. This was 0.4 degrees below the normal average temperature of 83.1 degrees. Total precipitation for Abilene in July was 2.46 inches. This was 0.59 inches above the normal of 1.87 inches.
At San Angelo Regional Airport, the average temperature for July was 83.4 degrees. This was 0.3 degrees above the normal average temperature of 83.1 degrees. Total precipitation for San Angelo was 0.77 inches. This was 0.43 inches below the normal of 1.20 inches.
The number of days in July with high temperatures of 100 degrees or more include:
8 at San Angelo, 2 at Abilene, and 2 at Junction.
Temperatures stayed below 100 degrees for most of the month. Typically, cold fronts only reach west-central Texas on rare occasions in July. For this July, however, cold fronts entered the area during the early and middle parts of the month, and again toward the end of the month. This helped to break up the periods of hotter weather. This was brought about by unusual developments with the upper level flow pattern across the upper Midwest and Great Lakes. These upper level pattern changes also prevented upper level high pressure systems from becoming established for long time periods over our region.
Scattered showers and thunderstorms occurred on the afternoon and evening of the 2nd, when a weak cold front entered the Big Country and an outflow boundary advanced south of Interstate 20. One of the storms produced a landspout tornado in Haskell County, 7 miles southeast of Haskell. This tornado affected rural areas and no damage was reported. Another storm produced strong, gusty winds in the vicinity of Eldorado in Schleicher County. This downburst wind caused damage to a power pole, several large tree branches, and some playground equipment.
Figure 2 (below) shows rainfall amounts for the 24-hour period ending at 7 AM on July 3rd.
Figure 2. Rainfall for the 24-hour period ending at 7 AM, July 3rd.
Scattered locations across the Big Country received one-half to one inch of rainfall, with localized amounts over an inch.
Following the weak cold frontal passage on the 2nd, temperatures were slightly cooler across the Big Country on the 3rd.
The most notable rainfall for July occurred in the middle of the month. A weak cold front moved south into west-central Texas on the 14th before stalling. The front lifted back north as a warm front on the 15th. An upper level disturbance moved southeast into the area late on the 15th and 16th, along with a stronger cold frontal passage. Showers and thunderstorms occurred with these features, and rainfall was locally heavy. Considerable street flooding was reported in San Saba, on the evening of the 16th. Considerable street flooding also occurred in Abilene, on the morning of the 17th. Strong thunderstorm winds on the 16th caused damage in Mcculloch County (2 miles north-northeast of Melvin), and in Callahan County (Cross Plains). Funnel clouds were reported around San Angelo on the 17th, but were not associated with supercell thunderstorms. Rather, these occurred in a moist, tropical air environment with much less risk of touching down and causing damage.
The rainfall for this event is captured in Figure 3 (below), which shows rainfall amounts for the 7-day period ending at 7 AM on the 18th.
Figure 3. Rainfall for the 7-day period ending at 7 AM, July 18th.
The highest totals (between 4.5 and 7.5 inches) occurred across the east-central counties of west-central Texas (parts of Runnels, Coleman, Brown, Mcculloch and San Saba Counties). Rainfall amounts over an inch were common across much of the region east of Highway 277, and scattered across the area to the west.
Hot and dry conditions occurred late in the month, with the prevailing influence of a strong upper level high pressure system over the region. On some of the days, afternoon high temperatures were in the 100 to 105 degree range at some locations.
Toward the end of the month, a weak cold front moved south across roughly the northern third of west-central Texas on the 28th before stalling. Scattered showers and thunderstorms occurred in the vicinity of this front. A stronger cold front moved south across west-central Texas on the 30th and 31st. On the 30th, showers and thunderstorms occurred across parts of the area northwest of a line from Ozona to San Angelo to Albany. A few locations within this area received one half to one inch of rainfall.
Temperatures were cooler on the 31st, especially across northern and central sections of west-central Texas, where highs were in the 80s.