Before I get into the severe thunderstorm outlook for upcoming days, I thought you might be interested in seeing how widespread this recent cold snap has been. Freeze Warnings are in effect Wednesday night all the way down to Tennessee and North Carolina. A good dozen states or more are covered (the area in blue on the map).
Weather Advisories Wednesday Night
Rain is likely Friday around here with a small chance of a thunderstorm Saturday. However it looks like the threat of severe storms with large hail, high winds, and tornadoes will stay in the Plains.
The convective outlook from the Storm Prediction Center for Friday shows the risk area mostly in Kansas, Oklahoma, into far northern Texas. That part of the country will be in a flow of warm and muggy air with dew points climbing into the 60s. A low pressure system emerging from the Rockies into the Plains along with strong jet stream winds will aid the formation of violent weather.
Severe Thunderstorm Risk Area for Friday
That storm will move through the Plains on Saturday c0ntinuing the threat of powerful thunderstorms and tornadoes in the same general area. The danger area sneaks into southern Iowa and western Missouri as well. Let’s hope this doesn’t turn into a situation where widespread damage occurs.
Severe Thunderstorm Outlook for Saturday
Finally, I want to bring up a sneaky weather feature that occasionally helps to develop or enhance precipitation and storms. It is called gravity wave. It is a rapidly moving ripple of energy with alternating up and down air motions. It normally shows up on satellite imagery as a striped area of clouds with clear breaks between them. Here is an example in the image below.
This gravity wave train ended up producing a thunderstorm with softball size hail in parts of Texas. We really have to watch them carefully, especially where they might intersect an existing front or boundary. That’s usually where the big action is. You can learn much more about this fascinating case and gravity waves in general by checking out this link from the Storm Prediction Center. http://www.spc.noaa.gov/coolimg/gwavecb.htm
Posted under forecast, Freeze, Severe Weather, Storms