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February 2014 & Winter 2013-14

  • Tulsa had the driest January through February on record this year, measuring only 0.45" of rain from January 1 - February 28, 2014 (records began in 1888).  This breaks the previous record of 0.63" in 1996.
  • February 2014 continued to be very dry across eastern Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas.  Tulsa had the driest January through February on record this year, measuring only 0.45" of rain from January 1 - February 28, 2014.  The Oklahoma Mesonet also recorded the driest January - February period for northeast Oklahoma.  Fayetteville, AR ranked as the 9th driest (2.48") and Fort Smith, AR ranked as the 11th driest (1.77") January - February period this year.
  • Using the radar-derived estimated observed precipitation from the RFCs, rainfall totals for February 2014 ranged from 0.10” in portions of eastern Oklahoma to around a measly 1” in portions of northwest Arkansas. This resulted in well below normal precipitation for the entire area for February. A large portion of the area received less than 25% of the normal February rainfall, with portions of Nowata and Okfuskee Counties receiving only between 5% and 10% of the normal rainfall this month. The remainder of eastern Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas received 25%-50% of the normal rainfall this month.
  • Several rounds of winter weather affected the region during the first half of the month, with the greatest snow and ice occurring on Feb. 2 and Feb. 4.
  • No mainstem river flooding occurred this month.
  • According to the Drought Monitor from February 25, 2014, Moderate Drought (D1) conditions pushed eastward into northeast Oklahoma, affecting Osage, Pawnee, Washington, Nowata, Craig, western Ottawa, northern Rogers, northern Tulsa, and northern Creek counties. D1 also redeveloped in Choctaw County. Abnormally Dry (D0), but not experiencing drought, conditions also expanded across all of eastern Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas.
  • According to the Oklahoma Climatological Survey, the 30-day period from January 30 - February 28, 2014 was the 4th driest for northeast Oklahoma, the 6th driest for east central Oklahoma, and the 7th driest for southeast Oklahoma. Records go back to 1921.
Winter 2013-14 (December - January - February)
  • According to the Oklahoma Climatological Survey, Winter 20-1314 was the 3rd driest for northeast Oklahoma, the 12th driest for east central Oklahoma, and the 7th driest for southeast Oklahoma. Records go back to 1921.
Outlook
  • The Climate Prediction Center CPC outlook March 2014 (issued February 28, 2013) indicates a slightly enhanced chance for below normal temperatures across far northeast Oklahoma and far northwest Arkansas, with equal chances for above, near, and below temperatures elsewhere across the area. This outlook also indicates equal chances for above, near, and below median precipitation across all of eastern Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas. This outlook is based on short-, medium-, and extended-range forecasts of expected weather conditions during the month. The enhanced chance for below normal temperatures is primarily due to a period of much below normal temperatures favored for the first week of March for much of the central and eastern US, a continuation of favored below normal temperatures in the extended-range model guidance until at least mid-march, and a tendency for below normal temperatures across parts of the central and eastern U.S. associated with strengthening and forecast Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) activity over the next few weeks. 
  • For the 3-month period March-April-May 2014, CPC is forecasting equal chances for above, near, and below normal temperatures and rainfall across all of eastern Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas (outlook issued February 20, 2014).  This outlook is based on both statistical and dynamical forecast tools.
  • According to CPC, ENSO neutral conditions are expected to continue through Spring 2014, with an increasing chance for development of El Niño conditions into Summer 2014.  An El Niño Watch was issued on March 6, 2014, with about a 50% chance of El Niño developing during the summer or fall.
 

 


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