Severe Weather Discussion for January 23 – 29, 2012

Severe Weather Discussion for January 23 – 29, 2012.
Issued:  01/22/2012.
Highlights:
–  Showers are possible Tuesday into Wednesday, best chance is southern Oklahoma.
–  Temperatures will be in the upper 50s Monday, mid 50s Tuesday, upper 40s Wednesday, mid 50s Thursday, low 60s Friday, low 50s Saturday, and mid 50s Sunday.
Probabilities:
–  Severe Thunderstorms in Oklahoma:  < 5%
–  Storm Chase:  < 5%
–  Winter Precip:  < 5%
Discussion:
Powerful shortwave trof passing over Oklahoma this evening will continue moving east and then northeast the next few days.  Significant severe weather event underway across Arkansas and points east this evening.  NWS Little Rock issuing tornado warnings referencing large damaging tornadoes.  A Pacific cold front has moved into Oklahoma this evening and is progressing rapidly southeast as the surface low translates northeast away from the state.  Very warm temperatures today will become mild mid-winter temperatures on Monday in wake of the cold front.
Models consistent on develop a southwest U.S. closed low in the split flow across the U.S.  Said low show lumber slowly across Texas through Thursday and eventually get absorbed into the mean flow as a longwave trof develops across the northeast U.S.  Presence of 70F dewpoints in the Gulf, even in the wake of the current system, should provide plentiful moisture for the expected closed low Tuesday/Wednesday.  Model QPF values appear high for Oklahoma, especially the NAM.  The GFS is more reasonable and likely captures the expected areal extent of the rainfall.  Closed low leaves the region late Thursday with little in the way of impacts beyond then.  A cold front is expected to move through the region as the northeast system takes shape.  This will cool things off for the weekend.  For now, haven’t gotten aggressive on temperatures since winter 2011/12 has been mild so far.  At this point, GFS shows no Arctic intrusions through the remainder of January.
GFS temps look good and ECMWF agrees an the basic points of the forecast.
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