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A summer storm system approaches KC

Good morning bloggers,

It appears that the thunderstorms will be staying mostly north of our area most of today. By tonight into Wednesday there is a storm system approaching our area. Yes, a summer storm system. Take a look at last night’s 06z NAM model forecast:

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I spent a long time analyzing this fascinating cycling pattern. And, I wrote an extensive blog over at Weather2020.  Here is the link to that blog:  Weather2020 Blog

The pattern continues to cycle according to the LRC.  This storm system, due in on Wednesday, is right on schedule. Now, how much rain will fall? We will go over the details on 41 Action News today and tonight. You have a few more dayst to enter our long range forecasting contest:  Long Range Weather Forecasting Contest Click on this link to enter.

Have a great day!

Gary

Tough Thunderstorm Forecast

Good Monday bloggers,

We have chances of thunderstorms every day.  They are being caused by numerous, hard to track features.  The pattern is a bit confused at this time.  Lets go through the chances through Wednesday.

First, today we have a weak front in the area.  There have been scattered thunderstorms across northern Missouri since Sunday evening.  This zone will likely sag south towards KC later today and tonight.

MONDAY: Look at the forecast highs from low 80s north to mid 90s south.  This front will be over head and there will be thunderstorm chances later today and tonight.  Some very heavy rain may fall in spots tonight.

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TUESDAY: Tomorrow gets even more odd.  The front will wash out and lift north.  So, there will be a zone of thunderstorms across northern Missouri where highs will be in the mid 80s.  Then across southern Kansas will be a storm system with a larger area of rain and thunderstorms.  Highs there will be in the 70s.  We are in between, along I-70, where the chance of rain is lower and there will be more sun.  Highs will be near 90°.  So, this is not an easy forecast.  Tuesday night and Wednesday will see the southern system head north.  This will bring the heavy rain with it.  It appears the best chance of rain will be along and south of I-70.

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RAINFALL FORECAST THROUGH THURSDAY:  You can see the 2-3″, maybe 4″ rainfall amounts are forecast to be just southeast of KC.  Areas to the north have lesser amounts, but there will be smaller areas that could see 1-3″ of rain in those locations.

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Now, all of this being said, it is not set in stone.  We will be tracking these questions.

1. Where will the zone of thunderstorms set up tonight? Depends on front location.  It will start a north move later tonight.

2. What is tomorrow’s high? It depends on the thunderstorm locations north and south.

3. How far north will the wet system track Tuesday night-Wednesday? Closer to I-44 like the GFS or closer to I-70 like the NAM, Canadian and Ecmwf suggest

Have a great week

Jeff

Keyword for this week: rain

It was a dry and hot day across the area today. Highs climbed into the lower 90s but it felt warmer with the heat index. Days like this are numbered, however….

Monday looks to be our last hot and humid day for a while. A stationary front is going to play a key role in our weather. And it’s twofold.
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Those to the South of that front, it will be warm and still humid. Those to the North, it will be a bit cooler and not as muggy. Based on the latest guidance, Kansas City will be living right along that front. What this means is: nailing down the forecast will be like hanging jello from a wall.

Already, the model guidance is struggling. From the GFS, to the NAM, to the Euro, and to the RPM… they all are printing out different solutions and thus, different rain amoutns.
For example, here is what the GFS thinks we’ll see in terms of total rainfall.
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Notice the bullseye along highway 36 in Northern Missouri.

And this is how the NAM sees it… which is quite a bit different.
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It kinda sorta doesn’t buy that whole idea of heavy rain to the North.

Temperatures will be another challenge. For example, on Wednesday the European model says the high at KCI is 78. Meanwhile, the GFS says we’re 89. Other guidance falls variously between those numbers.

In other news, here is an update on Guillermo, which is down to a Cat 1 hurricane. It is still expect to batter Hawaii by Wednesday morning.
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Back here in the land-locked states, we’ll be watching for our tropical-like weather pattern. As I mentioned yesterday, August is doing its best job to mimic July. It truly makes me wonder if this wet pattern will stick around by the time the real cold air invades this part of the country.

Enjoy your week ahead!
-JD

August is off to a hot, humid, and wet start; for some

It’s one of those real estate weather days today: all about location, location, location. Those in the Central part of Missouri have been dealing with rain, thunderstorms, and cooler temps. While those around Metro saw a few brief showers earlier today then a return of the heat and humidity.

Here’s the radar picture as of 5:45pm tonight.
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Those showers to the East of KC will stay there. I do think we have to keep tabs on the radar for something that may try to pop-up over the Metro. A weak outflow boundary is moving through and that could provide just enough extra “umph” in the atmosphere to generate a little storm.
Here is an animated image of the outflow boundaries trying to drift toward KC.
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So what’s an outflow boundary? The cooled air which falls out of thunderstorms, hits the ground, then spreads out. Think of pouring a glass of water onto a table. These little gust fronts can bring a small drop in temperatures and some gustsy winds. As I mentioned, it’s also possible these can help push air from the surface aloft, which may generate new pop-up storms.

In terms of rainfall that we’ve seen, check out the radar estimated rainfall since midnight.
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Some locally heavy rain is still possible this evening. No severe weather is expected tonight, thankfully. But again, be mindful of flooding.

Looking toward Sunday, we should stay dry. The big story will be the heat and humidity. Dew points will climb into the 70s again, it heat index values will be near 100° to 105°.
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Not a bad day for the pool. Enjoy it, because by Tuesday, it appears things will change. A system will slide in that should bring us a decent chance for rain. Some of it may be heavy at times. It will also cool us down into the 80s.
After that spotty rain chances will linger all the way through Friday. Yep. It’s back to that pattern again.

Reflecting back on July, here are some quick stats.
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And then focusing more on the rainfall, we’ve had some ups and downs so far this year.
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It appears August is picking up where July left off. This isn’t going to go down as a hot and dry summer, not by a long shot!

Checking in on the tropics, Hawaii is still in the path of a hurricane. This is the latest track on Guillermo, which is a category two hurricane right now.
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As you can see, it’s expected to arrive by Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday morning as a tropical storm.

Tonight, several events are going on around the Metro. The biggest thing: it’ll be warm and humid. Make sure to drink that water and prepare to sweat a little if you plan to be outside.

-JD

A break from the humidity…for now

A cold front is slicing through this morning and is about to become our best friend. It’s bringing rain, yes, but it’s also going to send our highs into the 80s and really drop those dew points.
The rain should taper off as we go through the morning. Between now and then, stay alert to flash flooding in the typical areas. You almost may encounter some wet roads this morning on your drive.
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Let’s talk about the power of this cold front for a second. As of 5am, check out the regional temps.
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40-some degrees in parts of Western Nebraska. It’s July! Of course, it did snow in Montana the other day, so…

It will not be that cool here, but the dew points will only be in the 60s today. Trust me, you will notice the difference.
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What this means: you won’t start sweating as soon as you step outside! The last few days, dew points have been in the mid to upper 70s. We should be in the middle 60s today and tomorrow. That’s tolerable territory for sure.

Temperatures will start to warm as we move toward the weekend.
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Along with those warmer readings, I believe we’ll see the dew points climb again. So do your best to make the most of today and tomorrow and these “cooler” temps.

As it stands right now, we may get a few dry days across the area for the next chance of rain comes into play. Then again–as I have said a few times before–this has been the year where any excuse will do for rain, so keep eyes on the forecast for changes.
-JD

Scattered Thunderstorms Later Tonight-Wednesday Morning

Good evening bloggers,

A summer cold front is on it’s way south.  Here is the forecast for around 5:45 AM:

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We have very rarely not had significant thunderstorms, so tonight will be interesting to watch unfold. The forcing is weaker due to the anticyclone located over Oklahoma and Texas. We are on the periphery of this clockwise circulation but the heights are close to being as high as they have been all summer long. The jet stream is now at it’s weakest average strength of the year and it is playing tricks with our wet summer weather pattern. It will be tested tonight, and during the next week.  For tonight the front will likely move through after midnight with scattered to widely scattered thunderstorms likely. If they are “widely” scattered that means they are less numerous. I will go over the details on 41 Action News.

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It is dangerously hot this evening, and as you can see heat is the #1 weather related killer.  Drink plenty of water. It will cool off tomorrow. Have a great night.

Gary

Heat Relief Arrives Tonight

Good Tuesday bloggers,

We are in for another ridiculously hot day with highs in the mid to upper 90s and dew points well into the 70s.  This will make afternoon heat index values 105°-115° with a few spots getting close to 120°.  Then, a cold front arrives tonight with a chance of thunderstorms followed by some refreshing summer air.  Lets go through the weather changes.

EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING UNTIL 9 PM:

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HIGHS TODAY: It will reach the mid to upper 90s, low 90s in spots

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HEAT INDEX FORECAST TODAY: When you combine highs in the mid to upper 90s with dew points in the mid to upper 70s you get a dangerous situation as the heat index rises to 110°, give or take 5 degrees.  Some spots may touch 120°.  Remember, the dew point is the temperature at which the air must cool to reach 100% humidity.  So, today it will have to drop to about 78° for that.   That means there is quite a bit of water in the air.

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TUESDAY 5 PM: A cold front will be approaching from the west with a cooler and much less humid air mass headed our way.  The south winds will be meeting the north winds along the front.  This is where the thunderstorms will form later today.  Some of the thunderstorms may contain quarter sized hail and wind gusts over 60 mph.

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SEVERE RISK TODAY:  The slight risk is mostly for Iowa where the flow is stronger.  We could see some heavy downpours.  We are in a marginal risk of a severe thunderstorm tonight.

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WEDNESDAY 1 AM: The thunderstorms will be getting their act together from Manhattan to northern Missouri.  This would mean a dry evening in KC, dry for the big One Direction concert.  We will watch this closely as things can evolve faster than the computer models say.

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WEDNESDAY 3 AM:  This is the best chance of thunderstorms for our area.  Very heavy rain (possible flash flooding) and frequent lightning will be the main threat.  One or two thunderstorms could produce quarter sized hail and a wind gusts over 60 mph.  Between 3 AM and 8 AM the thunderstorms will move south and fall apart, so the Wednesday morning rush hour looks mostly dry with perhaps a lingering downpour.  The roads may be wet, depending on how much rain we see overnight.

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WEDNESDAY PM: This is the good news.  A big surface high pressure will be over Nebraska bringing a cooler and much less humid air mass our way from the north.  The sun will be out as well, which means we are in for a wonderful Wednesday.

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WEDNESDAY FORECAST HIGHS: : Highs will be in the mid 80s with dew points in the 60s.  This will feel so much better.  So, instead of the temperature having to drop in to the upper 70s to reach 100% humidity, the temperature will have to drop in to the low to mid 60s, much less water in the air.

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Have a great rest of your week.

Jeff

Clouds Affect Us Again Today…..Excessive Heat Warning

Good Monday bloggers,

11:50 AM Update:

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Here is a picture I took just before noon as altocumulus clouds were increasing across our sky. This will be yet another way to keep our temperatures a bit cooler than they could have been. Tuesday should be a big warm-up ahead of a mid-week cool down as Jeff wrote about below. I will go over the details at 4, 5, 6, and 10 PM tonight.

Jeff’s entry below:

We are in an Excessive Heat Warning today.  The official warning resides along the state line with a Heat Advisory surrounding the warning.  To be perfectly honest the area in the Heat Advisory will be just as hot as the areas in the warning.  Actually, the humidity may be higher in the rural areas as there will be tremendous evapotranspiration from the crops.

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HEAT INDEX FORECAST: You can see the heat index forecast.  This model does have the highest readings over northern Missouri.  All areas may touch 110°-120° at anytime this afternoon.  Drink plenty of water, wear light weight, light colored clothing and make sure the kids and pets are out of the car when you are.

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5 PM TODAY: There is relief in sight.  A decent cold front will be located in the Rockies later today with some snow possible above 7-9 thousand feet in Yellowstone park.

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SEVERE WEATHER RISK TODAY:  The best chance of severe weather today is weather the much cooler air is interacting with the summer heat and humidity.  This area resides in the northern Plains.

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TUESDAY AFTERNOON: The cold front will be approaching as we have highs well into the 90s.  Nebraska and northwest Kansas will have highs in the 70s and 80s with, most importantly lower humidity.  Our best chance of thunderstorms this week will be later Tuesday night and early Wednesday as the cold front arrives.  Wednesday and Thursday will see highs in the 80s with lows in the 60s by Thursday (lower humidity).  So, the heat index today will be around 110°, give or take 5 degrees.  The low by Thursday will be in the 60s which means it will feel 50 degrees colder Thursday morning than it will this afternoon and Tuesday afternoon.

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Have a great week.

Jeff

Intense heat to start the week

Not a good time to be without air conditioning or ice cream. The next couple of days will be a lot like today: hot and humid!
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Dew point values will be stuck in the middle to upper 70s, and that’s going to make the air feel quite oppressive.
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Checking out the radar & satellite, we’re under a bit of a weak ridge aloft. The overall flow is taking things up and over our area.
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So with that going on, we’re just going to sweat it out for a couple of days.
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Now that said, we do have a chance for rain by late Tuesday night into Wednesday.
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A cold front will drop into the area and this should touch off some thunderstorms. Along with this front, some slightly cooler air enters the picture. Highs should fall into the upper 80s. Yeah, not much of a drop in temperature but we’ll take any relief we can get.
After Wednesday, indications are that we’ll remain dry until Sunday. Of course, this has been the season where we cannot seem to go more than two or three days without some kind of rain, so we’ll see if that holds true!

In the meantime, grab that ice cream, crank up the fan, and try to stay cool!
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-JD

Severe weather threat this evening

Update – 3:25pm
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As expected, we have a watch in place until 10pm tonight.
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Primary threat will be high wind near 70mph. That’s due simply to the extreme heat we have today. Other threat include hail near quarter size and very heavy rain. I cannot rule out a tornado warning or two before sunset. This would be somewhere along the surface boundary, which is very close to I-70. Again, find a way to get warning alerts when they are issued… our Storm Shield app is a great place to start.

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Not good news for Royals fans… it’s looking more and more like we’ll have thunderstorms in the KC area this evening.

The Storm Prediction Center’s afternoon update still includes us in a “Slight Risk” of severe weather for this afternoon/evening.
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Based on radar trends alone, I would suspect we’ll have rain & t-storms in the area by about 7pm tonight.
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Looking at the visible satellite, clouds to the North of I-70 (along with leftover rain showers) have led to a stable atmosphere. However, in the sunshine South of I-70, the atmosphere is becoming very unsettled.
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Just checking the temps alone, you can tell there is a stark boundary in place over the area.
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Add in the high dew points, and we’ve got several key ingredients for thunderstorms this evening. Our Powercast model has done a great job on picking up on the activity going on now. Other models like the NAM have completely missed out on what’s currently happening. So, that said, I think the Powercast (RPM) is on the right track when it suggests this by 7pm tonight:
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As of this blog writing (3:05pm), there are no watches in place. However, I suspect we’ll be placed in a watch soon that will likely include most of Eastern Kansas and a good amount of Western Missouri. Thus, it will likely include the KC Metro area. I would suspect this watch would go until 10pm.
Once one is issued, I will update this blog.

I encourage you or anyone you know that will be outside tonight, to have a way to get warning information when it’s issued. Also remember that you can watch our newscasts live online at KSHB.com.

Quickly looking ahead: I think we keep the heat going for Sunday through Tuesday. However, I am not seeing big chances for rain (outside of Sunday morning into early afternoon). There should be a cold front that drops into the area on Wednesday, giving us a chance for morning showers and “cooling” us off into the 80s for Wed/Thurs.

Be safe tonight and remember to stay weather aware.
-JD