What a difference a week makes. We were up to our ears in water at this point last weekend with chilly conditions. As this weekend comes to a close, we are enjoying clear skies and warmth – a much-needed opportunity to dry out. However, our next storm system is not far off, likely bringing heavy downpours and some severe weather to our state.
A large, but slow-moving upper-level low pressure is sitting over the Desert Southwest right now. It’s slow creep eastward will allow for another few days of warmth and sunshine here in Oklahoma. By midweek, our clouds will increase along with surface moisture levels. The upper-level low moving in will set the stage for strong to severe storms firing on Wednesday mainly to our west, and in parts of Green Country by Thursday as the main energy and cold front slide into eastern Oklahoma.
In terms of severe threats, this one seems standard for the spring. None of the severe weather parameters are incredibly high. However, we’ll have sufficient instability, forcing and wind shear in place by Thursday for several severe thunderstorms to form. The tornado risk isn’t terribly high, but the surface low pressure will likely move right across eastern Oklahoma. That “triple-point” (where the dry line meets the cold and warm fronts) could be a place of enhanced low-level wind shear late afternoon Thursday. It’s something we’ll be watching closely if our atmosphere destabilizes in time before its passage.
This storm system won’t latch onto nearly as much moisture as last weekend. We could see several rounds of heavy rain starting late Wednesday and into Thursday evening. However, most places will only end up with around an inch of rain with locally 2” or more possible. This isn’t enough to create major river flooding again, but flash flooding would be possible given our saturated soils that just can’t hold much more water.
A cool-down will follow Thursday’s front, making Friday a bit of a chilly spring day. Some places may not warm above the 60s. However, it’ll clear out in time to allow for another beautiful weekend ahead – perfect timing to take mom out for Mother’s Day!
As far as a week in May goes – this one doesn’t appear so bad for our region. We’ll just have our midweek bout of rough weather and scoot right into another fine weekend. Beyond this week, there are signs of the pattern becoming more active again. By mid-month, a deeper trough should form out west, that might send several waves of energy into the central Plains. That likely will bring more storms and a wetter than normal pattern to the region from the middle to end of next week if our computer models are on to something.
In the meantime, enjoy that sunshine! I’ll have more on the incoming storms midweek on Twitter (@GroganontheGO) and on my Facebook Page.