Here in OK we are truly blessed to have the OK Mesonet since it allows us to monitor so many different variables on multiple time scales to help us get a better handle on what is happening with our crazy OK weather which in turn helps in forecasting our crazy OK weather. As an example, notice this first map which shows the 24 hour change in the dew point temperature. Keep in mind, a simple way to remember the dew point is that it is the temperature of saturation. That, of course, will also be related to the relative humidity and the discomfort level in the summer time as the heat and humidity can be very oppressive such as a week or so ago when those dew points were in the upper 70s.
By the way, here are the actual dew point values across the state as of late this afternoon and the much drier air that has settled over Green Country is very apparent. That drier air is largely due to the more NE to E wind flow that has prevailed all day today. Fortunately, those winds have been just strong enough to disperse the pollution levels and the Ozone Alert for today will not be extended into the day Wednesday.
Another impact of that drier air is evident in the temperatures. Notice the max/min temperature map for today and the fact that many locations dropped well into the 60s this morning. That drier air has also kept us mostly sunny for much of the day which has produced daytime highs well into the 90s. But, as you can see on the maximum heat index values, the drier air kept those values close to the actual air temperature and therefore not nearly as oppressive as we experienced last week.
This kind of data also helps in the forecast process as the widespread presence of the drier air on our side of the state will allow for a relatively mild start to our day on Wednesday. Most of us should start off in the 60s with the exception of the immediate urban environments which will be in the low 70s. This drier air has also kept any showers or storms from making much headway into this side of the state.
But, as you can see on our forecast page, our chances of showers/storms will be on the increase later in the week. As mentioned yesterday, the wind pattern aloft has transitioned to a more NW flow which puts us more in the storm track and has produced some storm complexes a state or two north of us. Those have made a run our direction, but so far they have fallen apart when they get down here. That is expected to change with better chances of showers/storms for the Thu night/Fri morning time frame and perhaps again Fri night into Saturday.
For Wednesday and during the day Thursday, only a few very isolated showers/storms are expected, primarily during the late afternoon hours if at all. A return to a light southerly wind will also bring those very low dew point values up, probably into the mid-upper 60s but at least not likely to reach the extreme levels of last week.
As we head into the weekend, the pattern aloft will undergo another transition allowing for a more westerly flow which will reduce our rain chances as we head into the holiday weekend and the 4th of July on Monday. Looking further down the road, the long range guidance suggests a return to above normal temperatures along with only scattered showers/storms for the 8-14 day time frame. That makes our rain chances during the coming days all the more important that we do indeed get a good soaking.
So, stay tuned and check back for updates.