We are truly blessed in OK to have a world class network of weather instruments for every county of the state which help us to monitor not only the usual day to day weather but in particular the dramatic changes that occasionally occur. Case in point was today as a cool front was moving through the state. Notice the first map, courtesy of the OK Mesonet, showing the 24 hour temperature change as of 11 AM this morning. The second map shows the actual temperatures as of mid-afternoon; needless to say that is quite a contrast. For here in Tulsa, the low temperature as of early this morning was 70, and the high for today was 74 around 11AM; but, as of mid-afternoon temperatures were holding in the mid 50s.
Rainfall from the system was rather spotty and largely confined to the more N/NE counties as you can see on the 24 hour rainfall map, again courtesy of the OK Mesonet. For the most part, the rains are over for tonight although a few sprinkles or perhaps some light drizzle may occur in a few locations through the night. If we are lucky we may see a few breaks in the clouds later tonight or into the day Thursday, but cloudy skies are expected to be the general rule.
Then, another system aloft will be moving quickly from W-E across the state Thursday night bringing another chance of showers and perhaps some thunder. Most of that activity is expected to be along and south of the I-40 corridor and should be ending during the Friday morning time frame. That will leave us with clearing skies late in the day Friday and dry weather for the Friday night football games. After that, we have basically a dry forecast with only a very slight chance of a few very isolated showers for Saturday night.
As for temperatures, we are looking at the potential for setting some records in the days ahead; and although we had a big cool down today, the records we are anticipating will be the possibility of record highs early next week.
The cool down today will keep us very cool through Thursday and into the day Friday with morning lows in the 40s tonight and only reaching the lower 60s for Thursday afternoon. Those temperatures are dependent on any breaks in the clouds, and right now it looks like the clouds will win out. We will also have a NE wind for Thursday, but not as strong and gusty as was the case today.
The winds returning to a SE direction on Friday and some late afternoon sunshine should push afternoon highs back into the lower 70s. After that, as you can see on our forecast page, gusty southerly winds and partly cloudy skies will result in soaring daytime temperatures through the weekend. However, Monday looks to be the day with the greatest potential for reaching record territory. The record high for Monday is 90 and current indications suggest we will approach and may exceed that number.
A very weak front looks to be arriving late Tuesday so with a few more clouds in the sky, will knock temperatures back a few degrees and a few more on Wednesday with a more northerly wind by then. But, this is a very weak system with little or no mention of rain and those projected temperatures are still at or above normal.
In fact, looking further down the road, the 8-14 day outlook continues to suggest above normal temperatures through that period which would most likely translate to daytime highs holding around 80 and overnight lows well into the 50s or perhaps even low 60s. Also, the longer range guidance now has on its precipitation signal near to slightly above normal chances of showers or thunder.
So, stay tuned and check back for updates.