UPDATE: Fri 16 March 2012 / 3:50 p.m.
The potential for heavy rain and severe weather is zeroing in on the period Monday afternoon through Tuesday morning. Several inches of rain are possible along with locally severe storms.
A slow-moving and very intense system presents both a severe storm and flood threat early next week for both sides of the Red River.
A very fast jet stream streaking eastward across the Pacific at 175 to 200 mph will provide the kinetic energy to carve out a huge trough which should extend from Canada to Mexico by Monday (see map).
Meanwhile, Pacific moisture at the mid levels and Gulf moisture in the lower levels will provide plenty of water vapor to make clouds and precipitation. The trough provides a large-scale lifting motion as it approaches, and very heavy rain may be the result. There’s also the potential for severe weather Mon-Tue. Here's the map:
Soaking rainfall last weekend came in with lower amounts than expected because drier air worked its way in from the east. There’s no dry air to be had with this system so the rainfall will probably be in the several-inch range. Surface temperatures will also be considerably warmer, providing more energy for thunderstorm formation.
This system bears close scrutiny as it begins to take shape in the days ahead.