It was another beautiful day across the state, as you can see by the max/min temperature map courtesy of the OK Mesonet. No records have been broken as yet, but those afternoon highs are running 15 degrees or more above normal for this time of year and we may be close to setting some records in the days ahead.

Although several weak boundaries with a wind shift associated with them will be impacting the state over the next few days, no major changes are expected until late Saturday when a much stronger system will arrive.

Between now and then, look for morning lows and daytime highs to be much above normal, as you can see on our forecast page. There will be some day to day variation in clouds with occasional high-level cirrus clouds moving overhead, and the optical thickness of those clouds will impact temperatures to a certain extent - both at day and at night.

For example, notice, again, the maximum temperatures today and locations just west of Tulsa were only in the 50s to low 60s as compared to upper 60s and low 70s further west and further east. That is because of a rather thick layer of cirrus clouds that moved over those locations during the time of maximum solar radiation and that was enough to keep temperatures down somewhat.

That will be an issue for Wednesday and Thursday, but, even so, we are expecting daytime highs well into the 60s, if not some low 70s, along with relatively mild nights. By Friday, it looks like we will be cloudy pretty much all day, but if those clouds should thin out enough during the afternoon together with a brisk southerly wind flow; we may threaten the record high of 76.

Saturday looks like a cinch to start off with record warm morning lows, but a stronger storm system aloft will also be moving this way keeping us overcast all day long. The associated cold front looks to be arriving late in the day Saturday or, perhaps, overnight, which could result in cooler temperatures to end the day than when it starts.

This system will also bring a likely chance of rain with embedded heavier showers and the potential for thunder for late Saturday and through the overnight hours; cannot rule out the possibility for some marginally severe storms for the more SE counties of the state as well. Rainfall totals could be rather generous, as you can see on the 5-day QPF map, particularly for locations further east and into Arkansas.

As has been the case for days now, the longer-range guidance continues to be out of phase regarding the timing and intensity of this particular system. The GFS has been much faster and weaker, while the ECMWF has been much slower and stronger. The ensemble means have been more supportive of the ECMWF and the trends have also been more along those lines, so our forecast is based on the slower, stronger solution provided by the European model.

As a result, we are keeping a good chance of wrap around clouds and precipitation on the backside of the cold front through the morning hours of Sunday, which should be gradually ending from W-E as the day wears on. Currently, the temperature profile would suggest this would be all liquid, but will be keeping a close eye on subsequent model solutions in case that should change.

It will certainly be much cooler for Sunday, but not for long, as we will quickly rebound going into next week. In fact, the 8-14-day outlooks continue to suggest temperatures averaging above normal during that time frame along with above normal chances of precipitation.

So, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot