There will be much talk about Monday’s severe weather threat over the weekend, and for good reason: there is a lot of potential.

But, at the same time, truly big days are pretty rare! As we move through the weekend, here are some of the questions that need resolving for Monday to reach big-time status:

  • Cap strength: Some models are pretty bullish on producing a strong cap over the dryline. While most models do produce storms, not every model produces a lot of storms. Depending on the next factor, this could be a major player in the day or a more minor subplot.
  • Wave timing: In the image, you see a forecast 500mb vorticity chart, with much of the main energy ‘hanging back’ on Monday afternoon. If the main wave doesn’t eject until after dark, Monday’s potential will be much less than it would be otherwise. If it ejects in the afternoon, Monday could be a giant potential day.
  • Storm mode: Assuming the former two factors do not become issues, the last thing we’re monitoring carefully is what mode storms form in. Will they be discrete supercells with strong tornadoes possible, or will they be a more linear complex with damaging winds as the primary threat? This is something that is heavily dependent on a number of factors and is a factor that holds many big ingredient days back from reaching their full potential.

The thing we always say is that major tornado events are rare for a reason! They do happen! Monday certainly has the potential to be one of those big days, but it also has a lot of potential to be anything but that. We can only wait and see what future data says. We’ll keep this space updated throughout the weekend and may even go live for a special briefing.