National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Figure 1 shows the geographic regions across West Central Texas, which are referenced in this event summary.

Figure 1:  Geographic Regions of West-Central Texas.

Precipitation for August was well-below normal for most of west-central Texas (Figure 2).  

Figure 2: Percent of Normal Precipitation for August, 2015.

For most of the area where the monthly precipitation was less than 25 percent of normal (red color areas), the monthly rainfall (not shown) was less than one-half inch.  Only at isolated locations was the August precipitation above normal.    

Temperatures averaged above normal for the month, especially at San Angelo. Table 1 (below) summarizes August 2015 temperature, precipitation, and departure from normal for Abilene and San Angelo. 



Average Temperature(Degrees F)

Departure from Normal(Degrees F) Normal Average Temperature(Degrees F) Total Precipitation(Inches) Departure from Normal(Inches) Normal August Precipitation(Inches)
Abilene  84.9 2.1 82.8 0.62 -1.97 2.59
San Angelo  86.4 3.7 82.7 1.28 -0.98 2.26


Table 1: August Climate Data for Abilene and San Angelo.

* The average temperature of 86.4 degrees at San Angelo tied (with August, 1929) for the 10th warmest August on record.

The number of days in August with high temperatures of 100 degrees or more include:
19 at San Angelo, 13 at Junction, and 11 at Abilene.

Hot and dry conditions prevailed during the early part of August.  Widely scattered showers and thunderstorms occurred during the first few days of the month, as the upper level high pressure system weakened a bit and allowed a couple of weak upper level disturbances to move southeast into west-central Texas. 

Hot and dry conditions continued in several segments through the remainder of the month, interspersed with intermittent showers and thunderstorms which were mostly isolated to scattered in coverage.

Scattered showers and thunderstorms occurred across southern parts of west-central Texas on the 12th and 13th, in conjunction with a weak and dissipating cold frontal boundary.

The coverage of showers and thunderstorms increased across west-central Texas on the 14th, as the upper level high pressure system shifted west into the southwestern states, allowing a weak disturbance aloft to move south into the area. Rainfall amounts of one-half to one inch accompanied some of the showers and storms, with locally higher amounts. Strong winds from one of the storms downed tree branches at Carlsbad (Tom Green County).  A few showers and thunderstorms occurred on the 16th, across southern parts of the area.

A stronger than usual cold front (for August) moved south across west-central Texas on the 19th.  Scattered showers and thunderstorms occurred along and behind this cold front.  Temperatures across the Big Country were cooler on the 19th.  Temperatures were cooler area wide on the 20th, most notably across the Big Country and northern Heartland where highs were in the upper 70s to lower 80s.  Early morning lows were in the lower to mid 60s across much of the northern half of west-central Texas.

On the 20th, showers and thunderstorms occurred along and behind a weak cold front moving through the Big Country.  Some locations received rainfall amounts of 1-2 inches with locally higher amounts.

Showers and thunderstorms were isolated in coverage on the 24th, but a thunderstorm in the vicinity of the San Angelo Regional Airport produced a wind gust of 55-60 mph.

Scattered showers and thunderstorms, with locally gusty winds and heavy rain, affected much of west-central Texas along and south of Interstate 20 on the 25th.  The Abilene Regional Airport recorded a 46 mph wind gust from one of the storms. 

Isolated to scattered showers and thunderstorms affected southern parts of west-central Texas on the 26th.  A few light rain showers occurred across the northern half of west-central Texas on the 29th, and a few showers and thunderstorms occurred across central and southern parts of the area on the 30th.

The hot and dry conditions from July into August caused the vegetation to become very dry in some areas. Several grass and brush fires occurred, and some of these fires were started by lightning strikes. The location and estimated size of these wildfires is summarized in the table below.



Name and Location of Wildfire Size (estimated number of acres burned) Date of Containment
Cox Ranch, Crockett County (19 WSW Ozona) 432 Aug 18 (75%)
Sutton Ranch, Crockett County (25 W Ozona) 693 Aug 18 (90%)
West Fire, Crockett County (28 S Ozona) 3000 Aug 19
Head of the River Ranch, Tom Green County (5 SE Christoval) 5200 Aug 18 (95%)
Jack Rabbit, Mason County (17 SSE Mason) 414 Aug 18
Treadwell Lane, Menard County (9 N Fort Mckavett) 657 Aug 21
Wilhelm Lane, Menard County (8 SSW Live Oak) 556 Aug 22
Log Cabin, San Saba County (10 N Pontotoc) 3409 Aug 25
Rocking Chair Fire, Tom Green County (15 W Live Oak) 374  Aug 28 
Wildfire (not named), Schleicher County (8 SSW Eldorado)  400  Aug 29 
Prickley Pair Wildfire, Crockett County (23 SSW Ozona)   3452  Aug 30 
Buckholt, Crockett County (25 SSW Ozona)  1000  Aug 31