Our Next Chance for Rain
Saturday morning's discussion mentioned the QPF (Quantitative Precipitation Forecast) and I thought it would be instructive to take a look at the updated version. The image on the right is the QPF valid through Friday morning; you may recall yesterday's version was valid through Thursday morning. Obviously, there will be some changes from day to day as newer and hopefully better data becomes available. Notice though that E OK is still in line for ¼ to ½ inch of precipitation over the forecast period which is pretty much what yesterday's QPF was indicating. There remains some timing issues to be resolved, but it still appears that late Wednesday into the morning hours of Thursday will be our best bet for additional rainfall and possibly even some storms. Still way to early to get concerned about storms, but at least we have a decent shot at some more widespread significant rainfall to put another dent in the drought.
Between now and then, look for some mighty fine fall weather. A weak boundary will be moving across the state today, but will do little more than shift our winds back to a W or NW direction. The weak pressure gradient also suggests wind speeds should be around 10 mph or less. The morning clouds will give way to afternoon sun and temperatures should have no trouble reaching the mid-upper 60s and possibly even 70 for a few locations.
Fair skies and light winds will allow for a chilly start to Monday, but a return to southerly winds will also warm things up rather quickly. Those winds will be on the order of 10-20 mph with some higher gusts so an enhanced fire danger is the main concern. For the trick or treaters Monday evening, look for fair skies, brisk southerly winds, and temperatures in the upper 60s cooling into the upper 50s.
The main concern for Tuesday is the strength of the winds and the fire danger that will accompany wind speeds that may exceed 30 mph at times. It will also be sunny and warmer with highs well into the 70s.
As mentioned above, the next storm system will be approaching during the day Wednesday and should be moving through that evening or overnight, depending on which of the longer range forecast products one chooses to prefer. For now, will go with a likely chance of showers and storms for late Wednesday and ending Thursday morning.
Friday looks good but the coming weekend remains questionable. The longer range products have divergent solutions by then regarding the timing and strength of yet another system that will be coming our way for Saturday or Saturday night. For now, will indicate a chance of showers/storms for Saturday and hopefully Sunday will turn out alright. By the way, in case you were wondering, next Sunday is the time change Sunday.
So, stay tuned and check back for updates.