Pumpkins, Heat Domes, and Tropical Systems

I came home this evening to the sight of three pumpkins in my garden.  I had to rub my eyes to make sure I was not seeing things, after all it seems a bit early for Halloween decorations. 

I think the cooler weather has really given my wife a case of autumn-itis, since she was the one who purchased the pumpkins.  Who can blame her after the summer that we’ve endured, besides, fall is her favorite time of year.

Now that we have some cooler weather, rainfall would be a nice addition.  Farmers will be planting the winter wheat crop in the coming weeks, but the soil moisture is meager to say the least.  According to the Oklahoma Mesonet, much of the state has had the driest summer on record.  That goes along with the hottest summer on record.

There is a small chance for some rain in eastern Oklahoma this weekend from the remains of tropical storm Lee.  That weather system is still producing flooding rains in the mid-Atlantic states and the Northeast.  You may recall Lee came ashore near New Orleans last weekend and produced heavy rain and tornadoes in the Southeast.  If you look at the following  jet stream map from this evening, you can see a “dip” located over the eastern United States.  That’s what’s left of Lee.

By Sunday, that “dip” actually drifts west as it weakens, closer to Oklahoma.  Here’s Sunday’s jet stream map:

If there is any rain in Oklahoma from this system, it would be in eastern parts of the state.  Unfortunately the chances of any decent rainfall are very low.  By early next week, the heat makes a bit of a return as our old friend the heat dome returns to the southern Plains:

This will mean high temperatures in the 90s will once again be common Monday and Tuesday.  The models show a cold front arriving next Wednesday with a slight chance of showers and somewhat cooler air.

Since we are rapidly approaching mid-September, the tropics are very active with three named storms in the Atlantic basin:

The only system that could possibly affect Oklahoma is tropical storm Nate in the southern Gulf of Mexico.  More likely it won’t have any impact as the models either move it west into Mexico, or take it northeast:

I guess there’s still plenty of uncertainty.  Who knows, maybe nature will be kind and take the storm into Texas and Oklahoma and give us both a nice drink of water.  I doubt it, but we’ll keep watching.

Rick

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