What a headline! Our crazy Oklahoma weather continues!

So I know there’s already been talk of a severe weather outbreak with tornadoes going around. You know the rule. tornado talk is restricted to 48 hours. Anything beyond that and you’re working yourself up for nothing. Same thing on seasonal forecasts, they’re garbage. So take a deep breath and look at the science as to why things should be quiet around Oklahoma severe weather wise.

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So yes a large and powerful storm system will work through the heart of the country. The upper level energy extends from Oklahoma up through S Dakota. A blizzard will develop in the blue shading. So if you’re traveling that direction, take note! Notice how the model keeps Oklahoma dry Wednesday afternoon.

Storm system Wednesday

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Normally a storm like this would produce an outbreak of storms. The problem is moisture. The Gulf of Mexico pipeline of rich moist air is still shut down for the season due the longer lasting winter pattern. Notice the CAPE values running up the I-35 corridor and the dewpoints making a run. Too little too late and it’s what we call ankle deep, so the moisture mixes out during the day. You can see that on the sounding forecast below.

CAPE and shear Wednesday.

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Dewpoint values only in the low 50s along I-35.

Forecast sounding

On the sounding above, notice how far apart the green (dewpoint) and red (temperature) lines are both at ground level and higher in the atmosphere (top left panel). The farther apart they are, the drier it is. Storms need moisture to form and we just don’t have any. The shear is out of the park though! If we had moisture to work with there likely would be supercell storms capable of producing tornadoes, but without deep moisture we get sunshine instead. Now things can change but the trend has been to stay dry. So far March and April have suffered from this lack of rich moisture. Let’s keep it that way!

So with the storm system dealt with, what’s next? How about beautiful warm temperatures in the 80s! Take a look at the next several days before the bottom drops out again thanks to that storm system.

Temperatures Monday.

Temperatures Tuesday.

Temperatures Wednesday.

Then the cold front moves through and it’s back to jacket weather for Thursday and Friday and really into the weekend at that. On top of that it looks like a very light freeze for parts of NW OK and if one model is correct, snow? Yeah that’s snow in blue on Saturday. Ridiculous. Before you get too excited it’s just one model and one run. Most of it’s members keep the snow out of the body of the state. So we’ll see but something to watch for. The take home is that it’s going to be cold again.

Temperatures Thursday.

Temperatures Friday morning.

Temperatures Friday afternoon.

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Potential snow according to one model for Saturday.

After that the coolish pattern continues and the gulf stays closed for business. But this is a good thing if you don’t want severe weather. However it doesn’t treat us early planters very nicely. Long range forecast indicates a potential freeze next Sunday and Monday morning in NW OK and possibly C OK on Monday. I hope not!

Potential freeze on the 15th.

If you really want severe weather to return, looks like you’ll have to wait until the last week of April or so and even that is wishy washy at this point. If so, that just leaves us May through mid June around here. Long range models do indicate a busy start to May. We’ll see… -AT

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