Some 2021 rain predictions compare to 2015, but could be average year

Michael Hutchins
Herald Democrat
Storm clouds pass over Sherman in early May. The National Weather Service said storms like these have put the region slightly above where it should be for rainfall for this time of year.

After a relatively dry start to 2021, Texoma is on trend to have an average or slightly wetter year. Officials with the National Weather Service said Thursday that heavy rains in April and May have put Texoma slightly ahead of where it should be for this time of year.

As waves of spring storms have brought much-needed precipitation to much of Texoma in recent weeks, this trend is expected to continue through at least the end of May, officials said.

"After a dry start to the year, we've definitely caught up," NWS Meteorologist Jason Godwin said. "In fact, now we are running slightly higher than expected for 2021."

To date, Sherman has seen about 17.23 inches of rainfall for the year, putting it slightly ahead of the 16.73 inches expected for an average year.

This rainfall has primarily fallen in April and May, which have both proven to be wetter than average. The region typically sees about 3.87 inches of rain in April, but 2021 proved to be wet with just over seven inches of precipitation for the month. 

While the current rainfall for May falls below the expected 5.54 inches,  the region's 4.74 inches is well above what it should see for this time of the month.

"Most of that came on just a couple of days," Godwin said "There have been just a few days that account for most of that rainfall."

Godwin attributed the wet spring to an upper-level low that has been spinning over the Rocky Mountains in recent weeks. This has led to conditions stalling over Texoma and several days of wet weather.

Texas State Meteorologist John Nielsen-Gammon noted that Sherman isn't the norm for the region, and some parts of Texoma still are below where they should be for this time of year.

Nielsen-Gammon said current predictions call for the region to remain somewhat wet for the next month. This combined with the rainfall already seen in the region draw some comparisons to May 2015 and its historic rainfall and flooding.

However, ultimately, the same models predict that 2021 will be an average year, Nielsen-Gammon said.

Despite this, Nielsen-Gammon and Godwin said the spring rain could offer some relief from spring heat, which could be offset by the ample moisture.

"By the time we get to the 105s of July and August we will likely look back and be thankful for a wet spring," Godwin said.