Here's the reflectivity over Oklahoma and Texas at 1300 UTC, or 0800 CST - the start of operations each morning.
Clearly, we did not have a clean environmental slate to work with, as the ongoing convection in western Texas and central Oklahoma can attest to. In fact, a shelf cloud swept across much of central Oklahoma yesterday, and was visible in Norman as participants were arriving at the testbed. This shelf cloud showed up quite nicely in the visible satellite, as the textured band of convection running southwest-northeast across western Oklahoma.
In that satellite image, it's also clear how many boundaries were laying about yesterday. Outflow boundaries were everywhere, as was a front. At the time pictured above, the front and outflow were roughly co-located, although the outflow pushed further south than the front by the evening. Reacting to models that were quite spread once more (as is typical with such influential mesoscale detail), the total severe desk forecast broad 5% areas in the 22 UTC - 02 UTC period and the 00 UTC - 04 UTC periods:
By the 1500 CST, the radar had evolved considerably:
Even on marginal days, with relatively few reports, we can try to improve our forecasts. Updated HRRR runs, which did quite well last week, are used in conjunction with current observations to determine which morning ensembles were on the right track. Sometimes, our afternoon updates aren't changed from the morning forecasts. In this case, the FAR decreased. As we're working in real time, we can only forecast for what the atmosphere gives us. However, even in marginal cases, we try to integrate our meteorological knowledge, observations, and numerical guidance to come up with a coherent, consistent forecast.