Warm, Windy Weekend. Fog Tonight, Showers/Storms Christmas Day.
A rather dreary day today with the widespread light rainfall and relatively cool temperatures. Rainfall amounts were light as you can see on the 24 hour rainfall map, courtesy of the OK Mesonet.
The system responsible for the light showers kept the eastern half of the state overcast all day as well and you can see the impact of some sunshine on temperatures for the western counties.
With southerly winds through the night tonight, we will not cool off much and fog may well be a travel issue for the overnight and into the morning hours of Saturday. Dew point temperatures are in the 40s and the air is nearly saturated as I write. We do expect the dew point to drop off somewhat tonight, particularly if we get any breaks in the clouds. At any rate, the southerly winds should keep temperatures well above the freezing mark so freezing fog is not expected to be an issue.
The morning fog may take awhile to burn off Saturday although we may get to see a few breaks in the clouds and some sunshine by afternoon. At any rate, with increasing S/SE winds look for temperatures to quickly warm through the 40s and into the 50s to near 60 by late in the day.
Stronger southerly winds for Saturday night through Sunday will result in record breaking temperatures to start the day on Christmas Day. Morning lows will likely be in the 50s to low 60s and the record warm morning low for Christmas Day is 51 and we will be well above that. Those south winds will be blowing at 20-30 mph with gusts possibly near 40 so it will be a very windy day.
Passing light rain showers or drizzle will also be possible for Saturday night into the morning hours of Sunday followed by better chances of showers and possibly even a few storms that afternoon and evening. Some rumbles of thunder will certainly be possible and there is even a marginal threat of severe storms. Given the very strong winds at the surface and aloft, any storms that can get organized may be able to produce locally damaging winds late in the afternoon and into the evening.
Temperatures will hold in the 60s all day which is below record levels, but the overcast skies and widespread light rain or showers will limit the instability. As you can see, rainfall totals do not look to be overly generous, but the 3 day QPF does indicate ½” or so certainly possible and a few locations may even approach an inch of rain.
In terms of having a White Christmas, obviously that is out of the cards for our state. Here is the current snow pack as of this morning across the nation.
As for the last time we had a White Christmas, here is the snow pack for Christmas Day of 2009 and you can see the snow was widespread across much of the U.S. that year.
The front pushing through the state Sunday night will bring generally fair skies going into next week; and although temperatures will be cooler we will still be warmer than normal for the most part. As you can see on our forecast page, there will be some weak frontal boundaries moving through but nothing particularly impressive with regard to any real cold air coming back our way. Also, the coming week looks to be relatively settled with only a slight chance of some showers with a weak front the middle of the week.
Of course, at this time of year, conditions can change rather rapidly so in the meantime, stay tuned and check back for updates.