The main message today will be increasing southwest winds and warmer air moving back into the area. Afternoon highs will be very close to 100 in many locations, but the official highs from Tulsa International Airport may stay near 99 due to yesterday's rainfall over the northern Tulsa county vicinity. Almost an inch of rain fell late yesterday afternoon in Northern Tulsa County while most of the Eastern third of the state missed out on the much needed precipitation. Bixby recorded a trace of rain, but Holdenville picked up a half inch, and Fittstown in Pontotoc County received 0.32. We're seeing a few isolated showers this morning across central OK, but these are not expected to remain for very long as the low level jet veers and weakens the showers will dissipate.
The main feature of interest in the short term will be the building ridge of high pressure back near the region. Most, if not all, of the model data supports the center of the ridge developing across Kansas but the ridge will not be as strong compared to last week. Temperatures should continue to climb back to or slightly above 100 for the next few days but the 103 to 106 readings will be confined closer to the center of the thermal ridge located in Kansas.
As the weekend draws near, several features of interest begin to play a role in a possible pattern change for the nation, including the possibility of an easterly type wave moving across the southern U.S. and influencing our weather. The EURO is most aggressive with this feature and would require lower temps and high rain chances from Sunday into early next week, while the GFS is slower and not quite as bullish on the idea of precipitation. I think the EURO probably has the right idea, but I have little confidence in placing a high probability on the map for a day 7 time period. Therefore I placed a 20% pop for Monday while keeping the 100 reading until we see some consistency in the data and a few more "runs" of the data under our belt.
Another item of interest in the major pattern change that is being hinted in the data for early next week suggesting the main upper level trough to the east will slowly retrograde as the main ridge of high pressure will slide west. This will bring a northwest flow aloft back to the region early next week to the middle of next week and will allow a chance of late night and early morning storm complexes to slide across the area. This pattern change is about 9 to 10 days away.