Windy and Warm Today

Monday, March 21st 2011, 5:34 am
By: News On 6

The fire danger will be increasing today and tomorrow in advance of a major upper level storm system currently located near the Baja region.   This will cause the surface pressures to fall to our west and our winds will increase from the south at speeds of 15 to 30 mph.  The dry vegetation and drought will result in the high fire danger both today and tomorrow.  

The system will bring a cold front and dry line through the state Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning.   These features would usually spark off a serious round of thunderstorm activity in mid to late March, but the projected low level moisture is expected to be marginal and not very deep in the middle part of the atmosphere.  Warm air aloft may also keep a cap or lid on the atmosphere for most of the day Tuesday.  Surface winds are expected to be from the south and southwest.  This will limit convergence on the dry line Tuesday afternoon. The higher chances for thunderstorms would be across eastern OK and western Ark Tuesday afternoon.  If the storms form they would be severe with hail and damaging wind gusts the main issues.  I have kept the chance near 20%. 

 Mild air will arrive behind the system for a few days before another strong looking system arrives Friday into Saturday.

 The data last week supported a southern stream system taking the southern route.  This would have resulted in rather cool air with northeast winds and no chance of significant severe weather next weekend.

 The data this morning is more northward with the surface low and would place the state in a favorable position for severe storms next weekend. EURO data continues to support a more southward position of the low and the GFS is to the north.  Consequently, the confidence level for the extended portion of the forecast remains low.


Forecast confidence:

Today 8:  Issues:  optical thickness of clouds and the impact on afternoon highs.

Tomorrow: 8: Issues:  How many storms, if any will form.

Extended:  3  Issues:  Position of features this weekend and the impact on temperatures and precipitation.




Radom stuff:

 Worst thing about my job?

 Getting up at 2AM to go to work....on nice weather days.



Three things I would like to do "one of these days":

 Conduct a symphony orchestra

Travel more

Start a business



 If I had a choice of attending the Super Bowl or the Stanley Cup finals, I would choose hockey!