Spring weather forecast: The 90-day outlook for March, April, May around Tulsa

Posted at 4:28 PM, Feb 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-21 11:56:01-05

Storm season is just around the corner, and a few days are already lining up to bring severe weather to Oklahoma.

It's time for the spring weather forecast and a look ahead to the next 90 days.

In 2017, there is no El Nino or La Nina. Researchers consider those conditions "neutral" and expect them to last all spring.

That means there is a chance we will see a "normal" spring.

What does that mean???

We likely won't see more days with tornadoes in the forecast this spring, but we could see days with more tornado outbreaks.

LOOK BACK (3/30/16): Tornado in Tulsa, Owasso, Verdigris, Claremore Oklahoma traveled 26 miles

"What we're noticing is if you detect certain patterns within the jet stream they tend to lead to times across the U.S. where it leads to more favorability for tornadoes and specifically bigger tornadoes," said Victor Gensini, a long-range forecaster and Associate Professor for the College of Du Page.

We use the Lezak Recurring Cycle, or LRC Theory, to nail down when the big storms could hit. This theory says weather operates on a pattern, and by tracking the waves of energy as they move across the globe, we can predict when those waves will return to the U.S. This year's pattern is repeating roughly every eight weeks.

Hard to understand? Think of it like this.

"Almost like somebody in a wave pool that's bouncing up and down in a raft and it causes these waves to come out across the Pacific ocean and interact with our mountains and our topography and make severe weather in the great plains," said Gensini.

Here's another example. In Pattern 1, this is the system last week that brought snow to the northeast. In eight weeks, this pattern will return, minus the snow.

Pattern #2 is the low pressure system that brought us the thunderstorms early Monday morning. Expect this pattern to return in a couple of months.

That means we will experience temperatures well above average. It might be the second-warmest on record.

Due to the amount of time between storms, our drought may increase as we experience below average rainfall.

What are the days to watch?

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