Joe’s Weather Blog: Record Warmth Potential>Weekend Snow Possible (WED-1/28)

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Good morning…so here is a somewhat funny fast story…yesterday I went to Meadowbrook Elementary School in Gladstone for their “Reading Night” and I read a few weather stories to some of the kids up there…cute kids…enjoyable night…laughed at my silly jokes. So far so good. One of the books I read them (they voted from 5) had to do with Ground Hogs (from a meteorologist perspective not a fan shall we say) and then a book called Snow Day (when I leafed through it it had colorful pictures and seemed fine). Book #1 was cute. Book #2 was cuter but…..

The end of the story was that the kids who were so fired up about getting a “Snow Day” from school ended up disappointed when the forecast for a big snowstorm turned into a “BUST” and the kids how to go to school. As I read the end of the book I was crushed. Then I thought about everything I wrote yesterday and about an occasional “bust” in the forecast here in KC when it comes to snow…it was ironic I thought in light of some of the news headlines yesterday I thought.

Forecast:

Today: Near record highs. The record is 74° set in 2013. I know for about 4 days Ive been writing the record was 65°. If you saw yesterday’s update in the late afternoon I was tipped off by @huskerwxman that the record I was writing about was recently updated. Then I realized that my source for the records, at the NWS web page for these things, hadn’t been updated since 1/12012. D’OH! So my apologies. Michelle mentioned that it appears all the other TV stations either were reading my blog…or did the exact same thing I did! I’ve sent a tweet to the NWS in Pleasant Hill to see if they can update that page that we use all the time. In the end I should’ve realized what I was doing…and I didn’t. Either way…we still may get that record though…it will be close.

Tonight: A cold front will be moving through this evening and this will put an end to the super mild weather days for about 2 weeks or so. Temperatures dropping into the 30s

Tomorrow: Clouds and cooler weather with highs in the 40s.

Discussion:

The blogs have been a little rough to write and be interesting at the same time for the last few weeks as the warmer than average temperatures combined with the dry weather and lack of any storms in the Plains have conspired to give us some rather dull and boring weather in KC. Things though are changing as a somewhat stormier pattern tries to take shape and for the next 2 weeks or so, we’ll be vulnerable to shots of arctic cold air masses coming from the north.

First things first. Today. I’m increasingly interested in 3 things. 1) How windy will it be today. Winds above the ground are cranking already and are forecast to be blowing at 45-55 MPH this afternoon. With all the sunshine in place through early this afternoon the winds at the surface will continue to increase and reach 30-40 MPH as the day moves along. 2) Will see see an increase in cirrus clouds filtering the sunshine in the afternoon. Satellite pictures are showing clouds thickening in the upper levels of the atmosphere towards W KS and creeping this way. I think they move in after lunch time. (this may be the only thing to keep us from the upper 70s today).

3) How warm will it be not only at the surface but also a few thousand feet above the ground. The latest RAP model has temperatures at 925 mbs or between 2-3000′ of close to 68°. If we can “mix” to that level which I think is likely…that would support highs today between 75-80°! Remember I wrote about this on Sunday as something to watch.

What we need to time out perfectly is item 1 & 3. Too much of item #2 will cut the potential a few degrees this afternoon. I should add another item…that would be item 3A. We’ll be just ahead of a cold front and that too may contribute to a couple of degrees as a phenomena known as frontal compression potentially could add 1-2° or so on the + side. So a lot of items out there to figure out.

Let me show you more about item #3. This is the forecasted RAP sounding for KCI at 3PM today.

Capture

We’ve written a lot about soundings in the past. Please see my Sunday blog for additional information. What the image above shows (pay attention to the thicker black line in chart). Notice how that line goes down to 20-25°…those are the temperatures in °C. Converting to °F this would represent 68-78°. So the black line goes up to about 875 mbs (about 4500′)…when it then makes a “right” turn. This point of “turning” indicates the “mixing” depth of the air. That depth today is pretty high up for January (we seem to be doing that quite a bit this month) which indicates to me that the potential of 73-78° temperatures from KCI to Downtown is in play. Remember the magic number today is 74° (record for KC) and the all time JAN high is 75°. I think both are in play and both are increasingly likely. We just need to keep the sunshine strong enough and not be heavily filtered by clouds. Those clouds will be the deal-breaker because the atmosphere is primed for the warmth to come to the surface!

I’m personally going for it with a forecast high of 76° at KCI…breaking both records and establishing a NEW record for the warmest day in January! Let’s see what happens!

Now about the weekend. It’s not very clear cut and it’s increasingly likely that at least whatever falls during the daylight on Saturday will either be rain or some sort of wintry mix. Even IF it was mostly snow…with temperatures 32-35° it wouldn’t stick. Then as we head towards SAT night and the atmosphere cools down and the surface temperatures cool down…we should have at least some sticking snow move into the region. That combined with increasingly cold weather on Sunday means we could get at least some accumulations. While at this point it does not look like a significant snow storm…it may be enough to be a rather large inconvenience on Sunday, especially in the AM hours.

++++(2PM Note)…the data today is really less supportive of getting anything significant this weekend and while it’s certainly a cold solution the chances are that the precip will be shunted to the east and south of KC (or at least the most significant precip). I don’t want to rule things out though and it may be just a model glitch. We can potentially throw in the towek on this one tomorrow.++++

Since the blog is already over 1000 words I will write more about the specifics on the weekend tomorrow afternoon. Until then enjoy the great weather. Should there be snow on the ground on Monday morning the potential of 0° (or lower for N MO) weather is certainly there as I wrote about yesterday. This will do it for the super mild days for awhile…at least through the 1st 5-10 days of FEB.

Joe

 

 

 

 

 

 

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