Thursday Morning Update


Thursday, January 30th 2014, 4:30 am
By: Alan Crone


Good morning.  The pattern will undergo a change allowing for several systems to track near the area.  Each system will bring some challenges to the forecast but the Tuesday and Wednesday system has the greatest potential for major impacts across portions of the state.  There will also be a chance for some light precipitation Friday into Saturday, along with a chance for some snow with yet another system Sunday across the southern portions of the state.  

The upper air flow is currently from the northwest but will become more zonal (west to east) during the next 36 hours.  By the second half of the weekend the flow will be more from the southwest.  This is a favorable upper air pattern for bringing winter storms into the region.   

The first system will arrive Friday and will exit the region Saturday morning.  A front currently north of the state will slide southward as a surface area of low pressure develops and moves across northern OK.  Low quality moisture will be available for some light precip Friday morning across both northern OK and eastern sections of the state.  This may be in the form of light drizzle than real deal rain.  The temps will more than likely be above freezing, but a few locations could see a small window for some light freezing drizzle Friday morning.  I don't think the Tulsa metro would be impacted greatly with this system.  By the evening hours, additional precipitation is expected to develop across both the eastern third of the state and far north northern OK with Tulsa on the western edge of this possible event.  Temps Saturday morning may also be near freezing and could support some light freezing precip across far eastern OK and western Arkansas.  Yesterday's EURO was more bullish on the QPF but we'll continue to keep this probability around 30 to 40%.  Any precip would quickly exit our region after the Saturday morning hours.  The Tulsa metro could see some light precip Saturday morning.  

Sunday a fast moving upper level disturbance may move from the southwest to the northeast across Oklahoma with a chance for some wintry precip.  Temps during this period should be cold enough to support snow across the northern half of the state and a possible mix across the southern sections.  The data has not been consistent with placement, timing, and temperatures for this forecast period.  This morning's data suggest most of the precip will be located south of the I-40 corridor.  Therefore the confidence remains somewhat low but high enough to support the chance for Sunday afternoon and evening.  This wave would exit the eastern OK region by late Sunday evening.   

The third and final system for this 7 day cycle is the strongest of the three and has the potential for a major impact across the state.  The data has been consistent by bringing the system into the southern plains, but has not been consistent with exact placement of important features that would determine precipitation types.  The EURO was more southward but adjusted the position northward with yesterday's runs.  The GFS is slightly faster and would suggest more rain to the south and less snow to the north.  The EURO would bring rain into the state Tuesday with some accumulating snow across central and northern OK Tuesday night into pre-dawn Wednesday.  Our forecast will make no major changes from yesterday's numbers and will continue to keep pops for all three systems.   The first system is not expected to have a major impact but may become a minor nuisance for a few folks Friday and Saturday.  The Sunday system has the potential to have some wintry impacts but for a small area by Sunday evening.  The third will continue to be the system with the greatest impact potential.  

Temps today are expected to move back into the mid-50s along with gusty south winds at 15 to 25mph.  Some moisture in the 5000ft level may produce scattered stratus in some locations before the clouds overtake the area later tonight into Friday.  

The Friday temps are a big headache due to the possible position of the frontal boundary across the state.  Locations north of the front (including Tulsa) could stay in the lower or mid 40s while southern sections may move into the upper 50s and lower 60s.   

Once the surface low lifts eastward after Saturday morning, colder air is expected to surge southward for most of the day.  This would place most of the state into the upper 30s and lower 40s.  Sunday's temps could easily stay in the lower or mid-30s.  

Temps next week may moderate Monday with some lower 40s but would be colder Tuesday into Wednesday as the major system approaches the area. 

Please keep in mind the forecast will no doubt undergo some changes between now and next Wednesday.  You are encouraged to check the updates often. 

The official high in Tulsa yesterday was 46 recorded at 4:11pm.

The normal daily average high is 50 and the low is 28. 

Our daily records include a high of 74 from 1931 and a low of -6 from 1949. 

You'll find me on Facebook and Twitter. 

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

Thanks for reading the Thursday Morning Weather discussion and blog. 

Have a super great day!

Alan Crone

KOTV