As mentioned in a blog earlier this week, the headline was that the weather could get interesting around here. That was certainly an understatement. Yesterday's round of severe storms not only produced widespread wind and hail, but several tornadoes and storm surveys are still being conducted at this time.
The first map shows the preliminary rating and damage path of the Sand Springs tornado, as determined by the good folks at the local NWS office here in Tulsa. Other surveys are being conducted and the final results will hopefully be available later on Friday.
Those storms brought with them some locally heavy rainfall in a short period of time which also produced some local drainage problems. The rainfall totals across the state are shown in the second map, courtesy of the OK Mesonet. Unfortunately, the more western counties missed out on the rains and those are the locations that need it the most.
Of course, today we are on the backside of that system with the sunny skies and cooler conditions; some 20 degrees cooler as a matter of fact. Notice the max/min temperature map for example, also courtesy of the OK Mesonet.
Clouds will be returning tonight and partly cloudy to at times mostly cloudy skies will be the general rule right on through the weekend and well into the following week. We still have a vigorous NW flow pattern aloft over us which is bringing another system that will brush by the extreme NE corner of the state later tonight.
A few sprinkles may occur up there and potentially even some snowflakes into neighboring Missouri by early morning. Otherwise, mostly cloudy skies will be the general rule along with a brisk N wind of 10-15 mph.
The clouds make forecasting the overnight lows tonight a challenge as clear skies would likely result in a light freeze for the more northern counties, but the clouds may be just enough to keep even those colder valleys above the freezing mark. It will be a close call and a freeze warning has been issued as a precautionary measure for some of the counties along the OK/KS state line.
The clouds also make forecasting the daytime highs a challenge as it does not take much sunshine to warm things up pretty nicely at this time of year. At any rate, the combination of clouds and northerly winds should hold us into the 50s for Friday, but as our winds return to a more southerly direction on Saturday and for much of the day Sunday, daytime highs should rebound into the upper 60s or 70s.
Another system in the NW flow aloft may produce a few light showers for the early Saturday morning time frame as well.
Later on Sunday, another cool front will be pushing across the state followed by a more E wind for Monday and SE into Tuesday. This is not a particularly strong system so temperatures will only drop a few degrees or hold steady going into early next week.
Also, as we head into next week the pattern aloft will be changing to one that is less amplified but will allow for a series of relatively weak system to move this way from the west. That means relatively mild temperatures for this time of year, but also at least a slight chance of showers/storms on just about any given day as you can see on our forecast page. But, at least for now, do not see anything that looks particularly interesting.
So, stay tuned and check back for updates.