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Severe Weather Set-Up For Saturday

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Still lots of questions for the situation on Saturday and that will be the focus of today’s weather blog. If you remember I first blogged about this storm (or the potential) about a week ago and slowly but surely Mother Nature is in the process of dishing out a seasonably strong October Plains storm system that has the potential of bringing some severe weather and tornadoes to parts of the Plains states. Right off the bat, I’m not as concerned about the tornado potential in our area…those chances do look better though up towards IA and potentially even through parts of E/NE Nebraska.

We saw another push of cool dry air move in yesterday, the leading edge of that boundary has pushed across Texas and marks a pretty good separation of cooler and drier air vs warm and muggy air across southern TX. Here is the latest weather map showing the leading edge of the Gulf moisture.

That moisture will sit down there today then gradually move back northwards tomorrow and Friday.

The reason that will happen is two fold. One the large high, behind the front that moved in yesterday is sprawled on top of the Plains this AM…it will move towards the Lakes area tomorrow allowing our winds to switch from the N to the S/SE, that will allow the surface moisture down there to move northwards. The other reason is that a strong upper level storm will be moving through S CA and helping the flow aloft transition from the WNW to the SSW aloft over the next couple of days. Here is a look at the storm now, just off the coast of CA.

Now lets analyze the model output…here is a look at the track the upper level storm will be taking over the next 3-4 days…off the NAM. This animation will be updated throughout the day automatically. On occasion it may be missing as the model is being updated. What you can clearly see is that the storm will be passing well tot he NW of KC.

OK so where does that leave us? The best chance of any significant weather will be sometime SAT PM I think. Here is the surface map for SAT @ 1PM showing the ingredients coming together. Click on that image to make it larger.

I expect storms to fire up west of the KC area., closer to the dry line in the early afternoon. Those storms should race towards the NE and NNE at close to 50-60 MPH while the whole line progresses to the east. Since the storms will be moving so fast, the potential for gusty winds of 50-60+ working their way towards the ground will be certainly there and I believe the main threat of severe weather for us is that aspect. Hail production may not be too large and the tornadic risk is not as high as the strong wind risk. The SPC is watching this area closely as it has outlined below. Since the warm front will be so far north of here, we’ll definitely be in the warm sector of the storm system so given enough sunshine and moisture we should be rather unstable in the afternoon.

Is this a slam dunk? Well October severe weather set-ups are tricky. Should there be a line of advance rains or thick clouds ahead of the storm itself that can knock down our instability potential. Should there be widespread clouds that too may contribute to lower instability. So a lot needs to be figured out, and it really won’t get together till sometime Saturday AM.

At this point IF we have severe weather concerns it probably won’t be till sometime between 2PM and 8PM on Saturday…and again strong winds seem to be the main issue at this point.

Joe

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