Our Heat & The Arctic Circle Heat

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There actually is going to be a difference today, after what I think was a fascinating day yesterday as a “cold” front slowly moved across the region. Highs yesterday ranged from the lower 90s across the northland to 100 on the SW side of the metro. It was actually a few degrees cooler farther eastwards towards the Chillicothe area with highs in the upper 80s.

Today the entire region is actually enjoying a humidity break as dewpoints have tanked into the upper 40s(!) which really is impressive for this time of the year. It won’t last long though. Interesting however is the fact that the driest air has pushed from the Great Lakes through the KC metro area and down into the Lakes region. Here is a look at the dewpoint analysis showing the dry air, represented by the greens and yellows and the more humid air, represented by the blues.

Our winds now are from the east…gradually today they’ll blow towards the SE which should still circulate decent air into the region from a comfort scale. That should keep the most humid air towards the west of the area for the remainder of today and into this evening.

The issue then is that the air aloft, just above the ground is still very warm. The front was rather shallow and close to the ground…so the air aloft is still very warm. The winds this afternoon will start to increase from the SE at 15 MPH, that will allow mixing to occur and transport that hotter air down to the ground. The other issue is that dry air is easier to heat up than moist air is. So while the comfort level will be better today (not real heat index) the temperatures will still be in the 90-95° range for the afternoon. yes it will be a “dry” heat today.

That probably won’t be the case tomorrow as the S/SW winds blow the moisture right back on top of us. Combined with air temperatures surging to the upper 90s and lower 100s, means higher heat indices and hence the Excessive Heat Watch that is in effect for the KC metro area. areas farther east have the best chance of holding onto the the less humid air for awhile tomorrow.

The 100°+ heat continues through Friday. The ridge that is creating this excessive heat may flatten a bit over the weekend. This should reduce our highs back into the 90s but the humidity will be just as high, if not higher. We also should have at least some cloud cover across part of the area, maybe even some scattered storms in N MO. I don’t necessarily want to call this a break because the heat index numbers will still be rather high. The winds will be dropping off as well.

We are certainly not alone in this heat. All sorts of records are going down the tubes with this stuff and it’s VERY discouraging that we’re seeing this so early in the summer season. The heat has been worst across the Rockies. It seems NM, CO, and AZ have really been having issues. Denver, CO yesterday hit 105°, tying their ALL-TIME record high for any month! That’s impressive, and it’s something the Southern Plains (OK/TX) saw numerous times last summer. They’ve hit 105° 2 other times (July 2005 and August of 1878). It also busted their JUNE record high as well and marks 4 straight days of 100° heat! It may happen there again today with highs near 105°. Alamosa, CO has had 6 straight days of record highs! Get this, on Saturday Las Animas hit 114° which tied for the hottest temperature ever measured in the state of Colorado. Heck for the last 3 days the hottest weather in the country has been in KS and not out in the deserts of the SW!

Meanwhile in KS a few small communities hit 113°, nearly making KS the hottest spot on EARTH. Only a few stations in the Middle East got warmer (117°) It was close Kansas! a handful of cities in AR set JUNE records for the heat. Of course with all that there is no rainfall to speak off, which is opposite to the nasty flooding going on through the previously drought regions of FL. Upwards of 20+” of rainfall have fallen through parts of NW FL all because of Debby. Some rainfall records from yesterday alone…Jacksonville (7.36″), Apalachicola (6.78″), and Tallahassee (4.89″).

Still a tropical storm, weak in winds but mighty on rainfall, that is nearly stationary across the Gulf Of Mexico.

About a month ago, much of this area was hit by Beryl. Craig airfield in Jacksonville has picked up over 22″ of rainfall in the last 30 days!

Finally we are not alone. Yesterday I saw some tweets which led me to do some research about the heat that is gripping regions near and above the Arctic Circle! A region of the world that is usually noteworthy for the cold, is just baking right now. They have continuous sunshine, with no sunset I think right now. Do you know anybody in Inuvit, Canada (pop. 3300) in the Northwestern Territories?

Seems pretty…yesterday they hit at least 86°. They weren’t alone, Ft Good Hope (pop. 550) and Ft McPherson (pop. 775) hit 90°. As this next map shows these are communities near or on the Arctic Circle! From their website, the hottest it’s ever been was 89°!

So there you go…stay cool and again remember the Heat Wave Safety rules and just use common sense. I have tickets to tomorrow’s Royals game which is in the afternoon. I think I’ll pass.

Joe

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