A cold front is making head way towards Green Country Friday. This is part of a large system covering several states off to our west. South winds at the surface have been transporting warm moist air into the area since Thursday. With moisture already in place, we could see drizzle and some pockets of light rain develop out ahead of the front.
The cold front itself will be moving though from 9 p.m. to midnight. Wide spread showers are more likely to develop during this time from support of the cold front with localized pockets of heavier rain. Surface temperatures look to remain above freezing however the air aloft is cold enough to produce snow. Looking at vertical profiles of the atmosphere, conditions are prime in what we call the “snow growth region” for snow to form. The layer of warm air at the surface might be too shallow for a snowflake to melt before it reaches the ground. Seeing some flakes is not out of the question, ground temperatures however will most likely be too warm for anything to stick or accumulate.
The eastern half of the state will be quite a bit warmer than the western half. Temperatures in western Oklahoma and the Panhandle are cold enough for snow to stay frozen as it falls to the surface. There looks to be a mixture zone of cold rain and snow around I-35 that could extend eastward to Highway 75 in the early morning. Some redevelopment of showers in the afternoon is possible on Saturday but skies should start to clear Saturday evening. With clear skies and winds lightening up, that will lead to a temperature drop for Sunday morning.
This cold front is setting the stage for more cold air to arrive next week. A cold arctic air mass will be moving down from Canada and with already cool air in place, it should make it to Oklahoma without warming too much.
Its arrival will be just in time for the New Year!