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Tonight’s The Night!!!

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Well, for some… tonight will be the night you get lucky with some rain….for most the rest of us…it’ll may be another missed opportunity.

We hit 94º today…and there’s a cold front coming through tonight…so shouldn’t that be enough to do the trick? In the springtime, yes…in a summer pattern…you need a little more help.

The problem today was that it was hot aloft.  At 10,000 feet, the afternoon readings were in the mid 50s…and at almost 2 miles high in the sky…that’s pretty warm.  That tends to suppress updrafts until the air beneath it gets so hot that it rises in spite of the the warm air upstairs.

But to sustain a decent updraft, and get some rain going…the air near the ground needs to be slamming together persistently so that the air has nowhere to go but up.  That’s why fronts and trofs (wind shift lines) are important…they focus moisture into organized areas where it converges and starts to rise in a large enough scale to feed moisture high into the sky.

Today’s situation is a bit more complex…while storms have formed along the front in a spotty fashion…the wind fields need to keep forcing that moisture upward.  And as we head into the nighttime hours the low level winds tend to veer off to the east…so the wind fields that caused the storms during the afternoon shift around to make them either form elsewhere or dissipate.

The tricky part is the transition into the nighttime hours…when the lingering heat and wind flows of the day…start to affect the eventual wind flows that develop later at night…usually after midnight. And I think tonight will be a perfect example as we have storms over North-central Kansas that look promising…but as we head toward the midnight to 4 a.m time frame….the wind fields will become less favorable for them to hold together and get to Kansas City.   Northeast Kansas, and Northwest Missouri will get some rain…but here in the metro area the chances are not as good.

Once this rain chance passes by…it’s back to dry weather…and the week ahead holds very little hope for rain.  The next apparent shot appears next weekend.

Too bad Pensacola, Florida couldn’t share some rain…they picked up 13 inches of rain this weekend!  I lived there in the NAVY…that was the home port for the aircraft carrier I stationed aboard.  If it rained 2 or 3 inches down there you’d have all sorts of flooding.  Because of the extremely sandy soil, they don’t have good drainage systems…and the rain literally nowhere to go!

The hot spot in the nation today: Vernon, Texas 111º   Talk about natural BBQ!  The cold spot: 15º Charleston, Nevada.

The big problem for the upcoming week: Writing teases for hot, dry, quiet weather.   The most annoying part of television is writing teases.  A good tease is like a good headline on a story…it draws you in…makes you want to read or watch something. I think I spent every last idea on teasing last weeks dry, clear forecast…so the most interesting thing to watch this week…the teases!  It’s going to be a huge challenge!

I hope you cruise through your week ahead with no challenges at all!

~Mike

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