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Dick Faurot's Weather Blog: Cold Weekend, Colder Next Week

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Turned out to be even milder than anticipated for Christmas and this day after Christmas; notice the max/min temperature map for today as an example, courtesy of the OK Mesonet. Keep in mind that our normal max/min temperature for this time of year is 47/28 so although we did not set any records today, it was still unusually warm.

Now, notice the second map which shows the 24 hour temperature change as of late this afternoon, again courtesy of the OK Mesonet. As you can see, some much colder air has moved into NW OK and that is headed across the rest of the state as a cold front pushes through overnight tonight. As a result, temperatures by Saturday morning will be much colder with morning lows generally just above freezing and then not warming much during the day. Our daytime highs will only be in the upper 30s to low 40s along with a brisk NW wind to make it feel even cooler and under overcast skies until late in the day.

Along with the clouds, there may be some lingering light showers not only overnight but into the morning hours. Given the surface temperatures above freezing, no travel issues are anticipated although the temperature profile aloft may support a brief, very light wintry mix for Saturday morning.

Skies should be clearing by Saturday evening followed by a clear, cold start to Sunday with morning lows in the 20s. Despite lots of sunshine, Sunday afternoon will only make it into the low-mid 40s along with a light northerly breeze.

Monday will also start off clear and cold, but clouds will be on the increase during the day ahead of another, stronger cold front that should be arriving by late afternoon. Temperatures should moderate into the upper 40s before the colder air arrives which will be followed by much colder conditions through the middle of next week.

In fact, temperatures will struggle to get above freezing Tue-Thu so New Year's Eve and New Year's Day will be quite cold as you can see on the forecast page. The longer range guidance continues to flip-flop regarding precipitation as we head into the first of the year with considerable run to run and model to model variability. That leads to a low-confidence forecast with regard to our precipitation chances and precipitation type. With cold air in place but rapidly receding and a storm system aloft approaching from the west but taking what now appears to be a very southerly route; there are a number of scenarios which may play out. For now, will go with what should be mostly some light rain or showers for the latter part of New Year's Day and into that following weekend with most of the rain further south into Texas and along the Gulf Coast if you have travel plans. However, given how cold we will be before this system arrives, cannot rule out the potential for some wintry weather across the Sooner state and into adjacent KS before it is all said and done. Those details will get sorted out with subsequent data cycles.

In the meantime, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot

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