Been on a short break to Camp Tulakogee the last three days for 1-2 grade day camp; wouldn’t you know we get a break in the heat after the camp is over, just my luck. Oh well, at least the lake was down enough for the kids to do some fishing, and we even managed to catch some fish each day in spite of the oppressive heat.
Speaking of the break in the heat, notice the 24 hour temperature change map as of late this afternoon, courtesy of the OK Mesonet. Those somewhat cooler temperatures are due to a weak frontal boundary that has moved through the state, more cloud cover, and along with the clouds has been some spotty showers/storms.
As is often the case with summertime systems, any showers/storms will often be very localized, and that is apparent from the rainfall map. Most of the rain was in the more NW counties but a few showers/storms developed this afternoon on this side of the state and produced some locally heavy rainfall amounts, such as at the Cookson Mesonet site near Lake Tenkiller. Notice they received nearly 2” in a short period of time while nearby locations received very little.
Speaking of rainfall, notice the 30-day rainfall map, also courtesy of the OK Mesonet. For July, this has been an unusually wet period, with the exception of the SE and SW corners which are highlighted.
That weak frontal boundary will gradually become diffuse, but the wind flow aloft will maintain a somewhat unsettled pattern through the weekend and into next week. Aloft, we will be on the fringes of a weak NW flow pattern which will provide just enough support for a few showers/storms to develop on just about any given day. Although the chances of any one location receiving measurable rainfall will be rather small, if you happen to be under one of those cells they will be capable of dropping very heavy rain in a short period of time along with dangerous lightning and locally strong, gusty winds.
As you can see on our forecast page, we will have partly cloudy to at times mostly cloudy skies which, together with relatively light southerly winds, should keep temperatures somewhat in check. Daytime highs will be near to slightly below normal next few days, then near to slightly above normal till later next week. That is when the longer range guidance suggests we may see another somewhat stronger system to not only provide some relief from the heat, but perhaps enhance our rain chances once again.
So far, we have yet to record a triple digit temperature officially here in Tulsa - granted the heat index has been well into triple digits on numerous occasions - but the actually air temperature has so far topped out at 99, and we do not have any triple digits in the forecast over the course of the next 7 days.
Looking further down the road at the 8-14-day outlook, the trend suggests near to above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation chances.
In case you are wondering, the last time we did not have any triple digit temperatures over the course of the warm season was back in 2004. We still have all of August and into September to go before we can say with any certainty that we will avoid triple digits this year. But, as long as we keep getting periodic showers/storms moving through keeping the soil moist and the vegetation verdant, that certainly improves our chances.
So, stay tuned and check back for updates.