The dust has barely settled from last week’s rash of tornadoes across Green Country and we are already in the midst of another streak of unsettled weather. Severe storms are increasingly likely as we head into midweek with another big storm system on the way. Here’s what we know going forward.
The first round is already past – that was the early morning wake up call you may have had this morning as gusty winds, heavy downpours and some very loud thunder occurred. The next is likely to stay mostly in Kansas tonight as a weak ridge in the jet stream is steering the storms to our north. However, a few may and try to sneak south to near the Oklahoma-Kansas border. Any storms that do form or make it to Green Country could be severe overnight.
The mugginess will continue to be felt into Tuesday – a sign of the necessary moisture and instability for storms. While only isolated to widely scattered storms may form in Tuesday’s afternoon heating, a more widespread and severe batch will form across the Panhandle region and race eastward that night, posing a high wind, hail and isolated tornado threat. The map above shows that the greatest threat through Tuesday night will be west of Tulsa.
Depending on how fast that complex of storm moves, it could still be wet and stormy into Wednesday morning. This is actually our most likely chance of rain overall this week. Count on a messy commute that day. Wednesday brings our greatest threat of severe weather, but it’s dependent on how much time our air mass can recover after our early morning round. Should it stay cool and clouded over into Wednesday afternoon, the risk for large storms will be far lower. However, if we can re-heat the atmosphere, it will be primed for a potential severe weather outbreak with hail, high winds, tornadoes and flash flooding all likely. We’ve got a classic severe weather set-up with a dry-line to our west and cold front draped to our northwest. This is where storms would fire Wednesday afternoon and advance into Green Country by evening with all of those threats. Above is the overall timeline for storms through Wednesday and below is our risk zone for Wednesday.
You’ve also probably noticed how wet the ground is. May is mud season after all, being our wettest time of the year. In light of our recent downpours, our saturated soil cannot hold much more water. Any prolonged downpour, especially with the available moisture in the atmosphere, is likely to cause flash flooding and potentially cause our rivers and streams to rise again. It happened last night in Pawnee and Washington counties. It could easily happen again just about anywhere else through early Thursday. This very well may be our most widespread issue this week. Projected rain totals are below.
After midweek, we have a cooler, quiet spell. An unusually chilly air mass will arrive from the north and keep us below 70° from Thursday possibly through the weekend. If you like that early spring chill, you’ll love how our week ends. It’ll also be a nice reprieve from storms even if we see some passing showers Friday night or Saturday. Fortunately, Mother’s Day looks pleasant to celebrate mom as well! The long-range outlook still supports wetter than normal weather, indicating we are in an active storm pattern through the middle of the May. And likely to come with that…more rounds of severe storms. For more weather updates, be sure to follow me on Twitter: @GroganontheGO and on my Facebook Page!