Dick Faurot's Weather Blog: Chance Of Wintry Mix, Snow Possible Next Week

Friday, January 9th 2015, 7:48 pm
By: News On 6

Brrr...another cold day today as you can see from the max/min temperature map, courtesy of the OK Mesonet.

Most of us did not get above freezing this afternoon as another cold, high pressure ridge has settled over the state during the day. That high pressure ridge has brought some very dry air with it as well.

Notice the dew point temperature map for example, also courtesy of the OK Mesonet. Keep in mind the dew point is the temperature of saturation, so all things being equal it can often provide a lower limit on what the temperature can be.

As you can see, dew points are generally at or below zero late this afternoon which would suggest morning lows could possibly be that cold, but as you can see on our forecast page, we are not expecting temperatures to totally bottom out tonight, and we are not forecasting overnight lows of that extreme.

Having said that, you can expect it will still be very cold as winds will be light and our skies, generally fair.

Look for morning lows in the low teens and possibly even some single digits to start the day Saturday. Fortunately, that cold, dry high pressure ridge will be quickly moving on eastward so that our winds will be returning to a S/SE direction for Saturday into the day Sunday.

We will also have lots of sunshine for most of the day before the clouds start moving in late and that night. At any rate, our daytime highs will make it above the freezing mark, although not by much.

Also, those southerly winds will be up around 15 mph or more at times, so the wind chill will make it feel like teens or 20s for much of the day.

Cloudy skies will return by Saturday night with little or no sunshine until later next week. Along with the cloudy skies comes a slight chance of precipitation for late Saturday night into the Monday morning time frame.

Most of the energy from this particular system is expected to be further south and east of us, so our chances of anything measurable are rather small, as you can see on our forecast page, but the dryness of the air near the surface and the vertical temperature profile aloft which will have a layer of warmer air over the cold, dry surface air could lead to some freezing drizzle.

The window of opportunity for that will be, primarily, later Saturday night and again early Monday morning. Again, amounts will be very light, so this is not expected to be a high impact event, but keep in mind the bridges and overpasses could pose some problems during those time frames.

Temperatures Sunday morning will not fall off much from the daytime highs on Saturday due to the clouds and a S/SE wind that will persist through Sunday. At any rate, we will still start the day below freezing, so just be aware of any minimal icing issues that may occur.

As the day progresses, some moderation will occur and we may make it all the way to 40; that has not happened very many times so far this month and don't get used to it, as another cold surge will be arriving Sunday night followed by gusty northerly winds through Monday and daytime highs struggling to get above freezing once again.

Lows in the 20s and highs in the 30s, along with mostly cloudy to overcast skies, will prevail right on through Wednesday. It could get a little more interesting on Wednesday though as the longer range guidance continues to suggest a stronger disturbance aloft will be moving over the state by then.

With cold air in place at the surface, energy aloft moving overhead, and a below freezing vertical temperature profile all the way up, that combination usually results in snow.

Far too early to get too excited about how much snow we may receive, but there certainly looks to be a window of opportunity for some accumulation starting Tuesday night and ending during the day Wednesday.

Additional data runs over the next couple of days will help in providing better guidance along those lines.

At any rate, after Wednesday the sun return and the pattern aloft will shift to a more zonal pattern which will keep the colder air at bay further north. In other words, as we head into that next weekend temperatures should be moderating quite nicely.

Notice the 8-14 day outlooks for example which have a rather strong signal suggesting above normal temperatures during that time frame. That will certainly be a shift from what we have experienced so far this month as temperatures to this point are averaging more than 8 degrees colder than normal.

So, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot.