Repeated Rounds of Storms This Week
We have transitioned from a spring weather pattern to a summer one, but what hasn’t changed is the wet weather. We had another round of very heavy storms across Green Country on Monday with a few reports of severe weather including wind damage by Inola. A lot more unwanted rain and thunderstorms are in the forecast this week and it could create additional flooding woes to the region.
A tropical amount of moisture has filled the Southern Plains and is interacting with small ripples in the atmosphere to create storm complexes across the area. We saw the first in a series on Monday with more on the way. That will be especially true as an upper level low slowly approaches from the west midweek. We might have a lull in the activity on Tuesday with just isolated storms forming with the daytime heating. Those could be severe, but not pose the threat of widespread flooding like Wednesday and Thursday’s storms might as the low nears Oklahoma. That midweek pattern shown above reflects an early summer set-up where the jet stream flow has weakened over the region and left-over energy drifts our way with the stronger flow to the north.
That energy in the form of this upper-level low will be problematic given its slow speed. Widespread rain and storms will form ahead of it on Wednesday with the heaviest rainfall expected Thursday. Showers and a few storms could linger into Friday before finally clearing to our east by the weekend. That stretch of weather could involve some severe weather (especially Thursday) and rain totals between 2” and 4” across Green Country. Should that fall in a matter of a few hours in a given spot, flash flooding is all but a guarantee. Any training area of storms could also send local stream and river levels up again. It shouldn’t send us back to full on flooding along the Arkansas River in Tulsa. Keystone Lake has a little cushion for water capacity now. However, other flood-prone areas may once again get covered in water. Above is the rain timeline and below are potential rain amounts.
Even by the weekend, rain and storm chances won’t go away. A frontal boundary nearby could be a focus for more heavy storms Saturday into Sunday before a drier, cool stretch of weather starts early next week. The long-range forecast into mid-June favors a continued active pattern with the typical summer ridge in the jet stream on hold until further notice. That means waves of energy will again traverse the Plains and send waves of rain and storms our way. Hopefully it’ll keep us below the threshold of major flooding, but it certainly won’t help our reservoirs drain their excess water. The silver lining is that it may keep our temperatures on the cooler side as we head deeper into June.