Joe’s Weather Blog: No love for snow this winter (SUN-2/14)

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Or last winter either…right? I thought today I’d explore a few things related to snow around the KC area. Many are languishing about the lack of snow around these parts and with good reason. We’ve not seen much over the last 2 years or so. 2013 -14 and 2012-13 were decent for us…2011-12 was awful too. Through tomorrow this is our 16 least snowiest winter through the 15th…and IF we don’t get anymore accumulating snow (I think we will though), it will go down as the 3rd least snowy snow season here in the KC area.

Today there was some snow SE of KC with lots of freezing drizzle/rain/sleet on the southside of the KC metro…that made roads a mess for a few hours this morning but now all is good as temperatures are warming up nicely to near 50° this afternoon.

Forecast:

Tonight: Variable clouds and not as old with lows near 30°

Monday: Not too bad…there may be an isolated shower up north in the morning…need to see if that’s an area of freezing rain…then mild in the afternoon with highs 50-55°

Tuesday: There maybe some rain or snow showers in the morning, better snow chances closer to the IA border…somewhat cooler but still above average with highs near 45°

After that we start to warm up again with near 70° likely on Thursday and mild conditions on FRI>SAT.

Discussion:

Not going to talk about our local weather in detail today…other things are on my mind…

First the NE part of the country where record lows were set in some cities..the weather this morning was the coldest in almost 60 years in Boston as they dropped to -9°. NYC dropped to -1° for a record low…it’s tough to go sub-zero in NYC. Many other areas of New England saw some nasty cold weather. Mount Washington in N NH dropped to -40° (late last night) and had a wind chill of -80°. At one point it was believed to be one of the coldest temperatures on the planet at the time yesterday evening!

They will be warming up though over the next 24 hours as the coldest air mass in years (in a winter that is VERY warm there) moves away.

It is fascinating the extremes there…of course it was so warm there in DEC…with record highs common on Christmas eve…not on Valentine’s day it’s bitterly cold but again overall it’s been so warm there this winter.

Capture

Rankings of warmest winters since 12/1…the “1” signifies the warmest winter avg temperatures (so far)

Back home…again the snow situation is rather dire, especially since we have more milder weather coming this week overall into the weekend. There are no strong storms that are going to move this way in the foreseeable future and in about 10 days or so the snow window really starts to shut down. Obviously we can still be vulnerable…but as I highlighted for you on Friday…there is a marked drop off in snowfall totals over the course of the last 75 years between the 1st and 2nd weekend of March. Our time for “making hay” is going to be running out soon.

Here are the last 10 years of snow totals for KC

Capture

and the last 30 years…

Capture

and the least snowiest years…this take into account from 10/1 through 9/31 (except obviously for this snow season)

Capture

I brought this up because I saw this interesting tweet the other day from the folks at Climate Central.

and as it pertains to KC…

I sometimes disagree with some of their methodology used to create these types of graphics..but I thought this was interesting overall…here is the way they figured the information out from above…

METHODOLOGY

To determine which months to include for each station’s snowfall season, we collected precipitation data for each station since 1949, including the amount of snowfall per month each year. If there were more than 10 occurrences of any month (i.e. 10 Decembers) with more than 1” of snow, that month was included in the station’s analysis. In an effort to exclude very rare events, stations that had fewer than 3 months that met the above criterion were dropped from the analysis.

To determine the ratio of snow to rain, if any snow was observed on a specific day, then all precipitation that day was classified as snow water equivalent. If no snow was observed, then all precipitation was classified as rain. The ratio for each month is the monthly snow water equivalent divided by total precipitation for the month. This method is based on several research papers conducted on this topic.”

end text

So if I understand this correctly they’re saying that the winters are changing in terms of precipitation patterns here in the KC area directly. Seemingly there are more systems with rain as opposed to snow or at least that’s the trend line going back towards 1950 or so.

Here is more information from them

I thought that was very interesting. It’s probably NOT a perfect type study because I’m not sure how freezing rain or sleet in conveyed in that approach but still interesting stuff when looking back over the past 65 years or so.

For the record they have their beliefs/convictions on that web site and will cater/release information towards that end…I don’t wade into that stuff typically, for many reasons actually…but they do have some interesting research at times and I thought I’d share it with you.

That’s it for today…enjoy the milder weather and no your eyes are not deceiving you if your out and about in KC…yes those are our mugs up their in all their glory on about 10 billboards around town as the feature photo of the day shows.

Joe

 

 

 

 

 

 

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