Expect a partly cloudy to mostly sunny afternoon with highs nearing 50. The next system arrives Thursday but with only a low chance of showers.
After a chilly Monday, we're now on the "upswing " toward some moderating temperatures with afternoon highs expected to move into the upper 40s and lower 50s. There may be some mid and low level clouds attempting to form this morning to our south that could move northward, but we would expect mostly sunshine for most of the day. East to southeast winds will return in the 10 mph range today.
The upper air pattern is not expected to change significantly over the next few days, but the massively cold chunk of arctic air positioned northeast of our area will slide eastward. In the wake of this air mass, warmer air (relative in nature) will spread across the southwestern U.S. and into our area during the next 36 to 48 hours. The upper air flow remains progressive and another frontal passage at the surface will be likely Thursday or Thursday night.
As is normal, we'll have some timing issues with the shallow cold air mass planned for Thursday or Thursday night. These types of air masses tend to arrive slightly faster compared to model data solutions and both the GFS and EURO are suggesting the leading edge of the front will arrive Thursday morning across the northern part of the state. As this happens, a surface area of low pressure will develop along the boundary west of the NE OK vicinity. This will act to keep the boundary stationary for a few hours Thursday. A steep temperature gradient is possible Thursday with locations north of the boundary around the mid-40s to near 50 degrees and locations south of the boundary into the lower or even mid-60s. The outlier of the data is the NAM which develops the surface low slightly further north and therefore keeps the shallow boundary north with the 60s near Northeastern OK until Thursday afternoon. Here's what we've decided: we'll plan on a faster ( colder) solution with highs in the 50s across Northern OK and locations near and south of the I-40 area will hit near 60. The shallow air mass would support a faster and not slower solution. Even if it turns out slower (warmer) we would rather plan on the colder solution so folks won't be caught without the knowledge of the cold air moving southward. There may also be some funky wind shifts during the day Thursday. We could start out with north winds ( northern OK locations) with winds shifting briefly to the east and then southeast before rolling out of the northwest late Thursday afternoon and evening as the front passes the area.
The next issue will be centered on any precipitation chances with the system. A slower system would support a slight chance of showers across Northern OK and points eastward. Again, we're siding with the colder and faster depiction of the colder air and this means about a 10% chance of showers across the region Thursday into Friday morning. When in a drought...leave it out!
The cold air should linger through Saturday night with another moderating shot Sunday into early next week.
The progressive upper air flow will remain into next week with at least two systems possible.
The first could be Saturday evening into Sunday morning with a weak upper level disturbance approaching the area. A few showers or storms may be possible and I'll insert a whopping 10% chance for this period..
The second may be around Tuesday or Wednesday of next week with some higher promise for precipitation. Stay tuned on that deal!
Our significant drought remains across the state. The fire danger has never gone away and will be increasing soon if we don't get some beneficial rain across the state.
The official high in Tulsa yesterday was 41
recorded at 4:07pm.
The daily normal high is 48 and the low is 27.
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