We are watching a tropical system named Gordon VERY CLOSELY, because it appears the current track of the expected system will be VERY FAVORABLE for heavy rain across our area.  Some of the rain totals could be significant, exceeding 5 inches across the Northwest Arkansas/River Valley area.  The latest track from the National Hurricane Center shows the remnant low of Gordon tracking along the Oklahoma/Arkansas state line by Fri morning . Just east of the low is where you can expect the most significant weather, with heavy rain, potential rotating storms and gusty winds.

In the graphic below, notice how the potential path of the remnant low is still a little bit uncertain, BUT the paths are still tightly clustered near the Oklahoma/Arkansas state line. The exact track will need to monitored closely, since a shift to the east or west by just as little as 50 miles could mean major forecast changes for our area.

I’m not a BIG fan of posting extreme model data days out from a weather event, but in this case… I do believe it is important to help you understand the scope of what we could be dealing with. Here are some staggering rain totals across the area from the remnants of Gordon starting Friday morning and lasting through next Tuesday morning (according to the Euro model).  Notice the Seven day forecast rain totals (graphic at the top of article) matches up pretty well with these expected totals below.  This amount of rain would cause significant and life threatening flooding to parts of the area.  NOTE: This forecast could easily change if the track of the low is farther east.  That’s why we’ll be monitoring it closely, so don’t look at these numbers and expect to get this exact amount. I will say it’s a little eye opening to see these amounts even forecasted though.    

Finally, below is the American model (GFS), which shows WAY LESS rain totals across the area compared to the Euro due to a low track MUCH FARTHER to our east.  I will say the Euro forecast makes sense though, due to the consistency it’s had with Gordon’s track along with the synoptic weather setup in place.

Bottom line is we are still several days out from the track of Gordon becoming more certain, so at this point the confidence level of the exact track is medium.  The type of weather impacts we will see in our area will all depend on the exact track of Gordon’s remnants. 

Here are some important takeaways.

– It appears we will likely see rain by the end of the week into the weekend. Some of the rain could be heavy at times, so plan your weekend accordingly.

– Heavy significant rainfall over 5 inches in spots is looking more likely, but the exact track of the low is the key.

– Worst case scenario could bring a significant life-threatening flooding event with rain totals exceeding 7 inches.  The worst case scenario track will also bring the potential for severe weather and even tornadoes on the NE side of the low, which would be in parts in our area.

As always… we’ll keep you updated with the latest track and potential impacts to our area, so download our app (search: NWA WEATHER AUTHORITY) for the latest updates from your Weather Authority Team. –Chief Meteorologist Dan Skoff