A Spring Pattern Underway In Northeastern Oklahoma

Tuesday, May 1st 2018, 4:07 am
By: Alan Crone

A very low chance for a spotty shower or two may continue for the early morning hours near our area before quickly ending.  Strong south winds along with mostly cloudy and warm weather will remain for the day with highs in the upper 70s to lower 80s. 

A powerful upper level storm system located across the western U.S. will provide the chance for strong to severe thunderstorms across a large portion the plains states today through Thursday.  The better chances for most of eastern OK will remain late Wednesday evening into Thursday morning and possibly again Thursday afternoon and evening before the system leaves the state pre-dawn Friday. 

There will remain some questions regarding the coverage of thunderstorm activity with this system. Our weather Friday through the weekend currently appears pleasant and dry with morning lows in the 50s and afternoon highs in the lower 80s.

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South winds will continue to support rich low-level moisture streaming from the Gulf into Oklahoma for the next few days with some data supporting local dew point temps in the upper 60s or lower 70s by Thursday morning to midday.  A powerful upper air trough located currently to our west will slowly move eastward today with strong jet stream level winds rounding the base of the trough later today and ejecting into the SW Kansas into the high plains. 

Spotty storms are likely to develop across far NW OK or near the panhandle region into central Kansas and points northwest of our region later this afternoon and evening.  These storms will be severe with all modes of severe weather possible. 

The positioning of the system will keep these storms well to our northwest for the day.  As low-level moisture continues to move into the state a few small spotty showers may be possible across extreme southeastern or southern OK but these would not be severe. 

Our more favorable time for a few thunderstorms across northeastern OK will arrive Wednesday late into Thursday morning across eastern OK. All modes of severe weather will be possible.  Additional severe storms will be possible Thursday afternoon and evening, but the exact severe weather parameters will depend upon the outcome of the Wednesday evening and Thursday morning storms. 

Most of the day Wednesday should remain dry for most of central and eastern OK with a capping inversion keeping convection limited.  By Wednesday afternoon and evening, strong winds aloft will enter western OK with storms attempting to develop along and ahead of the dry line with super cell thunderstorm development possible.  It’s unclear to the amount or coverage of storms at this point but storms that do develop and spread northeast late Wednesday night into Thursday morning could be in the form of super cells or small clusters of severe storms. 

Despite the overnight hours, the threat for severe weather would remain into early Thursday morning before storms gradually weaken as the upper level jet streak winds tend to accelerate away from the area.  Again, the number of storms or coverage of activity is unclear at this point.  It’s also unclear how the atmosphere will respond Thursday morning to midday regarding instability for any additional thunderstorm development.  

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A larger amount of early morning storms Thursday may hinder the recovery process for later in the day as the dry line approaches the i-35 corridor region by afternoon and evening. Additional storms should develop and may continue to support all modes of severe weather, yet the upper level trough will be rapidly lifting northeast away from the state by late Thursday night and generally weakening during this process. 

A surface cold front will move across northeastern OK late Thursday night into pre-dawn Friday allowing for stable and dry air to invade locations behind the boundary, basically ending the thunderstorm threat during this period.  Our next upper level system may near the state early next week with additional thunderstorm chances by midweek.

Thanks for reading the Tuesday morning weather discussion and blog.

Alan Crone