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Weatherscapes - Oklahoma Panhandle: An Atmospheric Crossroads

The Oklahoma Panhandle is 166 miles long by 34 miles wide and gradually ascends in altitude from its lower, eastern margins at the main bulk of the state to the highest point in the state, Black Mesa (4,973 feet in Oklahoma) in the panhandle’s extreme northwestern corner. This part of the country, near the dead center of the Lower 48, strikes many as mysterious, even geographically vacuous.

On a map, the panhandle looks almost like it was placed there to serve as a buffer between Texas and the high plains of Kansas, as well as between the wide swaths of Oklahoma’s main bulk and the desolation of northeastern New Mexico and southeastern Colorado.

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