Relief is on the Way!

Saturday, September 3rd 2011, 6:46 pm
By: News On 6

Notice the first map on the right. It shows the high temperatures so far today as recorded by the Ok Mesonet. Once again, many locations are at or above triple digits. Now notice the second map on the right, also courtesy of the Ok Mesonet. It shows the change in temperature over the last 24 hours. There has been very little change for most of the state except for the Panhandle which has noticeably cooled off. That is due to the long anticipated cool front we have been discussing for the last week or so which has moved through that area and is coming our direction. So, relief from the persistent, excessive heat is on the way and will be arriving during the late night and early morning hours of Sunday.

Unfortunately, there will not be a lot of rain with this system. There will be some scattered showers and a few storms from late this evening through the overnight hours, ending by about Noon on Sunday. The chances of any one location receiving measurable rainfall is only on the order of 30% and a few lucky locations may receive brief, but locally heavy rainfall before this system moves on out. Barring any surprises, this will be our last chance of rain for the rest of the week. I say barring any surprises because tropical systems are notorious for doing just that, but everything at this point suggests we will be sunny and dry for Labor Day and through the rest of the coming week.

The circulation from Tropical Storm Lee is largely responsible for that as Lee is keeping the deeper, richer moisture well to our south. Also, Lee is affecting our surface winds with a light E or even NE component just ahead of the front which minimizes the surface convergence. Behind the front, northerly winds will be quite gusty at 15-25 mph or more for much of the day Sunday which will only bring even drier air over the state over the next few days. These gusty winds and the dry air they will bring into the state will also produce a high fire danger over the next couple of days.

At least we will be significantly cooler. This should be the last day of triple digits across the state for awhile as much cooler air will be settling in and the cool, dry surface high pressure ridge should dominate from a more northerly latitude. This will keep our surface winds from a general N to NE direction pretty much all week long, maintaining relatively mild, dry conditions. In fact, we may not even get above 80 for a daytime high on Labor Day and Tuesday morning may even see some 40s in the cooler valley locations.

So, enjoy the milder conditions, stay tuned, and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot