After Tonight, Rain or Snow Hard to Find
A potent upper-level low is driving a fast-moving wave of rain and a few thunderstorms through Oklahoma on this Friday afternoon. For much of the region, it has been over a month since any significant rain has fallen. In fact, most sites on the Oklahoma Mesonet are reporting 32 consecutive days without 0.10" of rain on any given day. A couple locations in western Oklahoma have been waiting for over 70 days for that amount on a given day. Needless to say, this storm system is being received with open arms in the state.
The fast-moving nature of the system won't do much to relieve or drought. The first attached map above shows the computer model consensus that no more than a quarter-inch of rain is expected in the area. The moisture return is meager and the system will be in and out of here before it has time to dump significant rain. At least it should be enough to settle the dust. Be sure to find a puddle and jump in it! I'm hoping we get enough to at least wash my car off a bit.
Beyond there, rain will be very hard to find. Snow will be even harder. I don't want to fully dash anyone's hope of a White Christmas yet since we are still over 10 days away. However, the pattern is not very conducive to sufficiently cold air or precipitation. Aside from another storm system that may draw up a bit more moisture midweek next week, we will remain high and dry. Long-range computer models waver significantly on a set pattern, but there are indications a deep trough would form to our east with a ridge over the Plains states to the west. This would essentially block needed moisture from returning from the Gulf and keep the Arctic air mass locked up to our northeast across the Great Lakes and New England.
With all of that said, the Climate Prediction Center shows above-normal temperatures and below-normal precipitation expected into the week of Christmas. There is a lot of mid and upper-level energy (strong winds and curvature of those winds aloft), so we can't rule anything out. I just don't think we'll be singing, "Oh, the weather outside is frightful…" anytime soon (unless your idea of frightful is sunny and mild!)