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Rural parts of Tarrant to get season's first freeze tonight

If you live outside the hustle and bustle of the city and are looking forward to this winter’s first freeze, then you’re in luck tonight.

If you’re inside the city limits, you’ll just have to wait another night.

Forecasters expect temperatures in the rural parts of North Texas to drop below 32 degrees, said Joe Harris, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

He said for the more crowded areas of Tarrant County, expect the first freeze Thursday night.

The freezing nights won’t last long, though. Expect the area to warm as the weekend approaches.

“We’ll begin to warm up, but then we’ve got another cold front that comes in mid next week,” Harris said. “We’re kind of in a seesaw routine for the next few weeks.”

Every year an airflow from the northwestern United States develops and allows cold Canadian air to slide down into the central and southern parts of the United States, he said.

In August, it happens every five or seven days. By Halloween, it’s about every four as the jet stream moves south. By Christmas, it’ll be every two or three days.

That creates the seesaw effect and the cyclical temperature fluctuations we’ll see through the winter.

“We’re going to be sitting in this pattern every few days,” he said. “You warm up before the front and cool down after.”

But that doesn’t mean there are freezing nights in store every few days, he said.

Harris said the norm for this time of year is lows in the 40s and highs in the 60s.

On this occasion, the jet stream that feeds the cold air just happened to wiggle over and catch some cooler-than-usual air from Alaska and the Yukon territory, hence tonight’s freeze (or tomorrow’s if you’re a city dweller).