Wednesday Morning Update

Wednesday, February 5th 2014, 3:48 am
By: Alan Crone

A strong arctic front has moved across the region earlier this morning bringing strong north winds and much colder air.  Wind chill values this morning and tomorrow morning may reach zero to -10 in some locations.  A wind chill advisory will remain for a large portion of northern OK for the next two days.  Actual surface temperatures will stay in the teens today for highs with morning lows in the single digits this morning and Thursday morning.  A few fast moving upper level waves will bring some snow chances back to the region, but no major accumulations are anticipated.  We have been experiencing some very light snow flurries and showers earlier this morning and a few more are possible for the next hour or so.  

A surface ridge of high pressure will continue to build down from Canada into the central plains.  This arctic ridge of high pressure will bring some of the coldest air of the season to the state during the next 36 hours.  The temperatures will continue to remain well below the normal high of 50 through the next 7 days.   

A weak upper level disturbance currently located across the four corners region will move eastward later tonight and arrive over the state Thursday.  This wave should produce some light snow across western OK Thursday morning and may produce some snow across the eastern third of the state Thursday afternoon or early evening.  

EURO data suggest a weak wave Friday may also produce some scattered snow showers across Eastern OK.   

We have been watching a strong looking system in the data for Saturday but the last several runs are now taking most of the energy away from the state with only a slight chance of Saturday snow.  Therefore we have continued to scale back on the Saturday probability for snow during this forecast cycle.  

Regarding yesterday's storm system:

We obviously missed the forecast accumulations for our immediate area.  I apologize greatly.

Yesterday morning around the 5am to 6am hour, the dry slot associated with the storm system began to rapidly lift northeast out of Texas into south-central OK.  By the 9am hour, this dry slot was past OKC and was also advancing rapidly into southeastern OK east of the Indian Nations Turnpike.  The dry slot brings dry air into the mid-level of the system which limits precipitation growth along the southern edge of the precip shield.  As the dry air advances northeast, it eventually limits or in many cases causes the precip to end.   

Before the dry slot arrived, the main precip mode across northern OK for the hours of 4am to 7am was more sleet than snow.  This also acted to limit the amount of snow accumulation.  By the time most of the northern OK area profile supported all snow, the dry slot was arriving and starting to limit the precip growth process.  Some light snow continued through the noon hour, but the accumulation was minor compared to the forecasted amounts.   

I began the process of lower our forecast accumulations early yesterday morning by 5am, and then again at 7am once the dry slot was racing toward the region.   Even so, we only received minuscule amounts in the Tulsa metro with higher amounts to the northwest of the I-44 corridor.   

Despite the lower amounts, I would offer a quick word of caution for this morning's commute.  Icing conditions may be possible in a number of locations due to extremely cold temperatures.  Please use some caution while traveling this morning.   

You'll find me on Facebook and Twitter. 

I'll be discussing the forecast on numerous Radio Oklahoma News Network affiliates across the state this morning through the noon hour.

 Thanks for reading the Wednesday morning weather discussion and blog. 

Have a super great day and stay warm!


Alan Crone