The map on the right, courtesy of the OK Mesonet, shows the max/min temperatures across the state for today. The southerly winds through the overnight hours kept us from cooling much to start the day and the higher humidity levels have resulted in enough cloud cover to keep temperatures from getting too far out of hand this afternoon. At least on this side of the state. Notice the SW corner where temperatures topped out well over triple digits.
However, our higher humidity levels also came at a price as the second map on the right shows the highest heat index this afternoon. The combination of heat and humidity made it feel very summer-like with upper 90 to near 100 heat index values. Notice also that the SW corner had heat index values that were actually below the air temperature. That is because of the much drier air in place out there which actually led to a reduction in the apparent temperature or heat index.
Fortunately, we are expecting a bit of a break over the next few days as a cool front is still on schedule to be pushing across the state later tonight and through the day Monday. This boundary will eventually stall out near the Red River Monday night where it will gradually become diffuse or lift back north as a warm front by later Wednesday. Look for SE winds ahead of the front shifting to the E and NE behind the boundary and wind speeds to be much less than what we had today.
Also, the change in winds will bring somewhat milder air back over the state so daytime highs behind the front should be in the 80s for the next few days. Some 90s may occur Monday afternoon for the more southern counties since the front will not arrive there till later in the day.
Not only that, but the presence of the surface boundary and a series of weak disturbances aloft moving across the state should also provide for at least some showers and storms each of the next few days. Some of those may also become severe as there will be adequate instability for some tall storms capable of producing marginally severe winds/hail. There is a slight chance of that late tonight ahead of the approaching front, and a better chance during the day Monday as the front pushes on through the state.
It looks like most of the showers/storms will be confined to the more southern counties on Tuesday and then another round possible area-wide for Wednesday. Even though the chances that it will rain are close to 100%, it is not going to rain everywhere and the chances of any one location receiving measurable rainfall is on the order of 20% later tonight, 40% for Monday-particularly during the afternoon. Tuesday should have about a 20% chance followed by another 40% chance on Wednesday. After that, any showers/storms will be few and far between as we head into the coming weekend.
So, if you are like me and still looking for a good rain, we at least have several chances over the next few days. In the meantime, stay tuned and check back for updates.