Perhaps not that far away in time…about three days….but, certainly far away in distance. The storm we believe will bring us a good chance of winter weather is still hundreds of miles off the West Coast. It’s approximately 2,100 miles from OKC. It’s quite impressive looking on IR satellite imagery.
Of course, when a storm is this far away, the track is uncertain. And the track may be the ultimate factor in what type of winter precip we see and how much we would get. As you can see, our jobs of forecasting a storm 2,000+ miles away ain’t a rodeo. As we get closer to Monday night, we can narrow that window of uncertainly down.
For now, we believe the storm will slip in right behind an arctic cold front that will dive through the Southern Plains on Monday. One model has the cold front well south of us by Monday night, and establishes sub-freezing air through the state earlier. This is depicted by the graphic above and would mean a quicker transition to a winter mix and snow for central and northern Oklahoma.
A second model brings a warm front over central Oklahoma as a “warm nose” of air extends northeast from the storm. This would keep the metro liquid Monday night into Tuesday morning, reducing ice and snowfall potential.
I think the chance for winter weather is very high, but the amount and type we will see is still certainly in question. I think northwest Oklahoma should prepare for significant snow, enough to slow travel or even make it impossible for a time on Tuesday. The metro may have to contend with enough of a snow/ice combination that travel may also be greatly affected.