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Joe’s Weather Blog: Wintry Saturday…but overall dry (FRI-3/10)

Bright and mostly clear (for now) in the KC region as temperatures are chilly for March…but after all the mild weather lately…we can’t complain too much. The issues before are are several over the next couple of weeks. Obviously we’re watching the snow potential on Saturday that, for many around KC may turn into more of a curiosity thing that a “we can’t get out of the house” thing. There is an overarching theme though over the next 10 days+…and that is despite the occasional chances of some moisture…the predominate thing I’m seeing is dry weather trends. more on that in the discussion.

Forecast:

Tonight: Increasing clouds and chilly with lows in the 20-25° range. An isolated rain/snow shower is possible.

Saturday: Snow developing as the morning moves along. The adjust from yesterday is that it may linger till mid afternoon. Highs around 31-34°. MY thoughts are a dusting to 2″ for most of KC area…and perhaps, unless it falls really hard, impacts on the roads may be minor since a lot of what occurs in the afternoon may melt off. Treated roads should fare OK overall. There will probably be some banding of the snowfall…and when that occurs some areas can get more snow than others…this potential of 2″ plus may be on the far northside of KC towards 36 highway.

Sunday: Variable clouds and not as cold but chilly with highs in the 40s but breezy SE/S winds will make it feel colder. Depending on how quickly things dry out…colder weather Sunday AM could create some slick areas.

Discussion:

Before I get to the snow chances over the next 5 days…I want to get back to my theme from earlier…regarding the dry weather in the region. The good news is that some areas have had some nice rains, these areas have been mostly south of KC…and unfortunately have some with severe weather as well.

North of US 50 though it’s been mostly a struggle. The latest drought report came out yesterday and there was definite degradation on the MO side of things.

Notice the “horseshoe” look towards central MO east of KC. That is “severe” drought status showing up for the 1st time in a while. 8%+ of MO has been upgraded to that status.

On the KS side…

A sliver of “extreme” drought status has developed in the far SW part of KS.

I bring this all up because when you see this idea off the GFS model it’s concerning…this is the morning run through the next 16(!) days. To be fair the runs previous were in the 1.5″-3″ range…so this may be an outlier…

The thing is is that the EURO model isn’t that great either over the next 10 days although it’s ensembles that just came out show 1″-1.25″ or so which is better over the next 16 days

A lot of that moisture comes from what happens tomorrow. By the way average over the next 16 days is about 1 1/3″ or so.

So here we are…after having written about the negatives on Wednesday and the positives on Thursday for what may happen on Saturday…now it comes to waiting to see how things evolve on radar in the morning. The model trends seem reasonable in that most have come around to a lower “liquid equivalent” over the past 12 hours….we’re looking at roughly .02″-.25+” of moisture from this. So my thoughts of a dusting to 2″ over the past couple of days seems reasonable.

For all the reasons mentioned in Wednesday’s blog…the lack of a “true” wave…the appearance of smaller and less focused + short lived “lift” and initially some dry air that may need to be fought off…keep me thinking that this will be more of a “nuisance” type thing than something worse. There continues to be the appearance of bands of briefly moderate to perhaps heavy snow potential…so a few areas conceivably could get more snow than 2-3″. Again that will be determined in a now casting situation later tomorrow AM. Model data seems to favor areas from near KCI towards US 36 for that potential…but this could set up anywhere really..including the heart of KC.

Areas farther to the south of KC may not get a lot at all…and it may even be as close as on the south side of the KC metro(<1″). Recent history is NOT on our side.

That’s pretty wild really…and it shows a lack of wintry weather in the best way possible. Last winter in the same time frame…we were under 3″. These last 2 winters… 😦

Let’s see what we can get tomorrow to add to this.

Of course in that same time frame…it’s been crazy warm as well.

Typically not a good combination for a lot of snow.

Another system will quickly zip through the region Sunday night (likely mostly/all liquid) and then early Tuesday. Another dusting to 1″ event is possible on Tuesday with that system.

I just got off the phone with my colleagues at the NWS in KC…we were talking about a possible tornado in SW JOCO, KS and SE Douglas Co, KS from the other night. They went looking for damage indicators but couldn’t find anything.

Also I asked about the “freeze warnings” that are in effect for tomorrow AM…and likely for several morning coming next week. Considering it was around 25° this morning it might strike some odd that there now is a freeze warning for tomorrow AM with lows will be around 25° or so. The reason why they are issuing these warnings is for the fruit growers in the area who have requested them during these times. So as a result…expect quite a few of these over the next 5 days or so.

So to wrap up…the snow is likely. Amounts will vary through the region with higher amounts perhaps most likely north of downtown. Some areas could see over 2-3″ of snow in bands which can’t be resolved till they form on radar. Many areas will only have a dusting to 2″. As I mentioned yesterday…would I be shocked if there is a rogue 3+” total…NO! Would I be shocked if some have a dusting at best…NO!

Our feature photo comes from Savannah Whitesell of Spring Hill, KS of the lightning from the other night.

Joe

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