While the weather in November was "somewhat tame" by Oklahoma standards, the state still saw dramatic temperature differences, the state climatologist said Monday.
The highest recorded temperature of 81 degrees occurred twice — at Buffalo in far northwest Oklahoma on Nov. 9 and Waurika in far southern Oklahoma on Nov. 19, according to preliminary data from the Oklahoma Mesonet.
The Mesonet site at Eva in the Panhandle fell to minus 4 degrees on Nov. 12 for the lowest temperature of the month.
The wind chill also dropped below zero 39 times at the Mesonet’s 120 sites, with Eva’s minus 17 degrees on Nov. 12 setting the low mark.
"November’s weather was somewhat tame by Oklahoma’s standards, with cold weather dominating the headlines," state climatologist Gary McManus said in his monthly weather summary.
Several intrusions of arctic air blasted the country during November, and Oklahoma caught the edges of the frigid weather each time, he said.
Along with that cold came a mostly dry month across western Oklahoma. Heavy rains fell across the eastern half. There was a bit of snow across far northern Oklahoma — totals of 2-4 inches were observed in the Panhandle. A couple of thunderstorms in the east managed to exceed severe limits during the month’s final two days with wind and hail being the main threats.
An outbreak of wildfires occurred on Nov. 26 when a strong storm system moved through the state, kicking winds up to over 60 mph. Interacting with low humidity and temperatures in the 70s and 80s, those winds allowed fires to spread rapidly, prompting evacuations and wide-scale emergency response efforts. In addition, more than 15,000 residences and businesses were without power due to the high winds.
The eastern parts of the state had 6 to nearly 8 inches of rain, including 4.93 inches at the Mesonet site in Tulsa — more than 2 inches above normal for November.
The 30-day outlook, revised Saturday by the Climate Prediction Center, has Oklahoma with a 60% chance of above-normal temperatures for December and equal chances of above- or below-normal precipitation.