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DreaminAboutPalms

Crazy microclimate in East Austin (not the good kind)

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DreaminAboutPalms

This morning when I woke up at 5AM it was 41 degrees in North Austin where I live near the domain, I drive out to Manor 15 miles or so east off 290 to golf and it is 34 degrees at the manor weather station and 32 right outside the clubhouse. I begin talking with this other member who lives on the course in the shadowglen neighborhood off hole #11, and he has the app on his phone connected to a temperature gauge in his backyard.

He began explaining to me how the area around his house is significantly colder than the temperature at the clubhouse, and he showed me this mornings temperature reading of 25.6 at 6:37AM, and showed me weather data for the whole month revealing he hit 18 degrees on January 2nd when weather station reported 25 in manor and it was 28 at my apartments. Last winter during Uri he recorded -2 degrees while manor station recorded 4 degrees and it was 7 at my apartments. He claims that he has hit the teens or lower every year he has lived there (10 years) 

Less than a mile away on the other side of the course is a newly installed queen palm with 15 feet of trunk that looks flawless 

This area is the lowest elevation in Austin area which would be my guess as to why this happens. 

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kinzyjr
20 minutes ago, DreaminAboutPalms said:

This morning when I woke up at 5AM it was 41 degrees in North Austin where I live near the domain, I drive out to Manor 15 miles or so east off 290 to golf and it is 34 degrees at the manor weather station and 32 right outside the clubhouse. I begin talking with this other member who lives on the course in the shadowglen neighborhood off hole #11, and he has the app on his phone connected to a temperature gauge in his backyard.

He began explaining to me how the area around his house is significantly colder than the temperature at the clubhouse, and he showed me this mornings temperature reading of 25.6 at 6:37AM, and showed me weather data for the whole month revealing he hit 18 degrees on January 2nd when weather station reported 25 in manor and it was 28 at my apartments. Last winter during Uri he recorded -2 degrees while manor station recorded 4 degrees and it was 7 at my apartments. He claims that he has hit the teens or lower every year he has lived there (10 years) 

Less than a mile away on the other side of the course is a newly installed queen palm with 15 feet of trunk that looks flawless 

This area is the lowest elevation in Austin area which would be my guess as to why this happens. 

I call this the "sacrificial lamb" - the area(s) that collect all of the cold air so a few appropriately situated areas can enjoy a slightly more favorable climate.

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amh
2 hours ago, DreaminAboutPalms said:

This morning when I woke up at 5AM it was 41 degrees in North Austin where I live near the domain, I drive out to Manor 15 miles or so east off 290 to golf and it is 34 degrees at the manor weather station and 32 right outside the clubhouse. I begin talking with this other member who lives on the course in the shadowglen neighborhood off hole #11, and he has the app on his phone connected to a temperature gauge in his backyard.

He began explaining to me how the area around his house is significantly colder than the temperature at the clubhouse, and he showed me this mornings temperature reading of 25.6 at 6:37AM, and showed me weather data for the whole month revealing he hit 18 degrees on January 2nd when weather station reported 25 in manor and it was 28 at my apartments. Last winter during Uri he recorded -2 degrees while manor station recorded 4 degrees and it was 7 at my apartments. He claims that he has hit the teens or lower every year he has lived there (10 years) 

Less than a mile away on the other side of the course is a newly installed queen palm with 15 feet of trunk that looks flawless 

This area is the lowest elevation in Austin area which would be my guess as to why this happens. 

This is very common in the more arid and hilly areas of south and central Texas. I am zone 8A, just north of Bexar county and have seen 15F at my house under canopy during this warm, La nina winter.  Cold, still air sinks into low lying areas and radiational cooling amplifies the low. Look at the forecast dew points to get an idea of how cold an area can get.

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MikeB

I was in Austin a couple months ago and the rolling hills and oaks reminded me of the south S.F. Bay Area where I grew up.  As a kid I would walk up and down those hills.  In winter after the sun set in the early evening I could feel the temperature drop as I hiked down towards the bottom of a gully.  The change was dramatic and fast.  Then the warmup happened as I walked up the other side.  It would happen over and over.  As a kid I wasn't thinking about how cold air sinks but I couldn't help notice it and I never forgot the feeling.

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