Joe’s Weather Blog: The t/storm conundrum (MON-7/3)

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If you watched any of my weather casts over the weekend or read my weather blog yesterday you know I’ve mentioned about 1000 x’s NOT to cancel outdoor plans for today or tomorrow. I’ve mentioned time after time how the forecast was certainly NOT set in stone and was going to be a very changeable one. This morning as I start that blog…that theme will continue. There are many variables to things for the next 2 days…but still there are no huge indications of any specific time that will favor rain over another time except perhaps tomorrow PM. I still think Tuesday will be marked by more storms on radar…whether they affect your community or not though is certainly not a guarantee and that, right now holds through the evening hours. If I was making the decision on whether or not the displays are going to be affected…at this point I’d lean towards the optimistic side of things and keep a careful eye out for changes.


Today: Partly cloudy and muggy…but seasonable overall with highs well into the 90s. Storm risk is about 20%…perhaps more towards later this afternoon and tonight. Light winds overall…under 15 MPH

Tonight: Perhaps some isolated overnight storms…muggy with lows near 70°

Tuesday (the 4th): Partly cloudy warm and humid…highs well into the 80s. Higher storm risks appear to be into the afternoon and night…somewhere in the region.

Wednesday: Lingering storms are possible in the morning…then the better chances move farther east. Partly cloudy in the afternoon with highs into the mid 80s…with perhaps some isolated storms reforming. Chance 40% overall.

Thursday: Hotter with highs near 90°


I’m not sure how much more I can add compared to yesterday’s blog. As I type this up though I did want to show you the satellite picture because it sort of highlights the conundrum that we’re looking at.

The areas circled represent small circulations generated by thunderstorm clusters. There is one towards the bootheel, one in northern OK and another one in central KS. Because the winds aloft are so light (mostly) these things have a tendency to move somewhat slowly and wander around a bit.. The one in central KS will be monitored later today as it drifts SE or ESE…and moves closer towards the Topeka>Wichita area. This little pocket represents a small area of colder air aloft…and sometimes those little pockets, as the ground heats up to about 90° with the seasonable dew points in place can help to create enough lift to generate new areas of storms…that then drift towards the east or SE. That will be monitored for later today and this evening. Then what’s left of that circulation may be waffling around the region on Tuesday…into Tuesday night again potentially yielding more unstable conditions developing with the heat building. In addition should this pass south of KC…it can always rotate around it a small disturbance that spins towards the region helping to enhance some t/storm chances again sometime tomorrow.

The other option would be IF it passes so far south of KC that it really doesn’t alter the atmosphere that much around us…IF that’s the case it may be tough to generate convection since there won’t be anything really to focus on. So many possibilities.

Since the flow in the will atmosphere will be so weak and light…any storm that can form could then create various outflows…this then generates more storms in haphazard fashion…and that’s how tomorrow evening could get dicey in some areas. Again though where this all happens (of it happens) isn’t easily forecast.

These things can drive a forecaster crazy. They are typically poorly handled by model forecasts and basically the weaken during the AM hours (on average) then IF they can hold together can throw a monkey wrench into a dry forecast. Where the end up forming and where they move are tough things to figure out. Suppose one forms towards SE Nebraska? That would migrate towards NW MO and then drift SEwards and affect us. That’s why I can’t totally take the storm chance out of the forecast through WED AM at least.

Our short term model data will offer some help but not a lot…here is the HRRR model showing it’s thoughts for the next 15 hours or so.

You can sort of see the circulations spinning around IF you look at things hard enough.

So with that posted…here is the latest radar that will auto-update during the day for you.

Both the products above will be helpful through tomorrow.

It is what it is…you just have to watch things over the course of several hours and then see how things look again in the skies around the region.

I mentioned last week that sometime next week we may start seeing some decent heat build into the Plains…as a rather strong heat wave generator out over the Big Sky country starts expanding eastwards a bit more. That will need to be watched because IF it can expand towards the east…we may see a run of 95-100° locally. Again something to pay attention too. The weather pattern overall looks like it really wants to settle into summer mode next week and beyond.

All this while, at least later today, the sun is FARTHEST away from the earth. Today marks aphelion. The opposite occurs in January So why does it get hotter now compared to when the sun is closer to earth…it’s all about the TILT of the earth in it’s orbit around the sun!

Another tidbit for you…did some number crunching for the 1st half of the year, through June 30th…KC is tied for the 7th warmest start to a year in records going back to the late 1880s.

Our feature photo comes from our own Karli Ritter (@KarliRitter) on twitter. Enjoying some time off this week and taking some great pictures

Have a happy and safe 4th!


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