From the highest of highs (Saturday and 77 degrees) to the lowest of lows (single digits and teens), this winter blast will last, but could swing to spring.
I don't want to get too ahead here because there will be a ton of weather to track over the next week to 10 days. I have several graphics at the end of this post which explains everything you will read below. First of all, I have updated the winter contest numbers. Just click on it in the white bar above. How's this for a statistic??? Despite the winter storm Tuesday, Pine Bluff has STILL had more snow this season than Harrison. Also, Little Rock is winning the winter right now with more snow than any other official station I can find in the state. If someone can prove me wrong, please let me know.
This arctic blast means business. We went below freezing in Little Rock at 3 PM Tuesday and may not get above it until Friday. I am not optimistic about breaking the 15 year streak in Little Rock without any single digit temperatures. A few clouds and some winds should keep Little Rock in the teens for lows Thursday morning. I have talked about air traveling over the fresh snow pack to the north chilling our air even further. Some even speculate this will be enough to send Little Rock below 10 degrees. While Mother Nature has the final say, I will hold onto my theory that we MUST have clear skies, no wind, and snow cover. On Monday's edition of "Arkansas Weather Live", Snowbirdbob said we would drop to 8, WeatherClipper said 9, WeatherNinja 12, and I said 11. I think we are all too cold. It will probably be around 13-17 degrees Thursday AM.
Next item of business, the snow chances Friday. A vigorous low will spin over Texas and move towards the state. When you look at the presentation of the low, you would think it would have the ability to develop a significant storm, but probably not here. The air will be very dry and cold across the state which will limit anything from this system. Right now, it's likely we will see some light snow with it, but nothing too significant. It's worth noting that the JMA is bullish on precipitation amounts, but that model usually overdoes things.
Now onto next Monday and Tuesday. Is it DeJa Vu all over again? When I looked at the 12Z Euro yesterday for next Tuesday, it looked just like the storm currently affecting the central United States... surface low coming out of Texas with a 1052 mb high dropping out of Canada. The overnight run of the Euro is much weaker, but now the GFS is stronger with the system. It looks like the models are trying to develop a system which probably won't be as intense as Tuesday's storm, but could cause more trouble for someone in the mid south. It's way too early to speculate, but I WILL WATCH IT FOR SURE! The models area also having some timing issues with this system.
This storm will be followed by one LAST cold blast. The European, GFS, and Canadian insist the cold arctic high will shift east by the very end of next week developing a strong southwesterly flow at the surface. IF this develops, we would easily bring temperatures into the 60s and 70s again. How long will that last? Tough to say. Will it be a brief warm up, or a sign of spring, or will it even happen at all? It's in the long term so this can always change.
Check out all the graphics below and thanks for reading the Arkansas Weather Blog!
|Strong 500 mb low in TX Friday morning|
|NAM Friday AM showing precip. getting into southern AR. 540 line running from Texarkana to Blytheville|
|Tuesday's 12Z Euro valid next Tuesday. Looks like a repeat of the big storm. There's a surface low over the Arklatex with another extremely strong high coming out of Canada. The 540 line runs through NW Arkansas.|
|The overnight run of the Euro. Not as strong with it, but still there for next SUNDAY... timing issues.|
|00Z GFS shows significant wintry weather across the northern half of the state next Monday|