Joe’s Weather Blog: How can a storm right on top of us…miss us? (FRI-1/18)
Good morning. We’re digging ourselves out of the arctic air mass that’s been an issue for us for about a week now…temperature this month are running about 8° below average which is pretty impressive for the later part of January. We will be warming up over the next several days but overall it does look like we’re going to get a break from the intense cold weather that’s been an issue for us for the last few weeks.
Today: Mostly sunny and pleasant but breezy with highs into the 50s. Winds will gust to 25 MPH
Saturday: Lots of clouds with some thin spots every so often. Highs should be somewhere in the 45-50° depending on the amount of sunshine (if any). There may be a few random sprinkles. Winds SW/S 15-25 MPH
Sunday: Mainly cloudy and mild with highs well into the 50s to near 60° Winds SSW 20-30 MPH. There may be a few showers but nothing too heavy is expected at this point.
This strange winter in KC will continue for quite some time. We’ve had just shy of 5″ of snow…which overall isn’t terrible really…but it just seems strange when looking at how other parts of the country especially the deep south is doing this season. Places where there shouldn’t be snow…it’s snowing..places where the should be snow,,,it;s like pulling hairs it seems.
The following map is still depression city for snow lovers when it comes to snow this season.
From essentially I-80 southwards…it’s overall pretty grim…unless of course you reside towards the Gulf Of Mexico…then you have plenty of snow this season.
This graphic via the Washington Post says it all really…
Notice the more purple colors from parts of MS northeastwards to the western Carolinas…definitely a differnt purple shade than the middle part of the country. That indicates more snow.
So here we are…heading into the weekend…with a significant area of low pressure coming right on top of the region…and yet we’re going to miss most of the substantial rains and snows for that matter. You can sort of make out our next storm system coming out of the western part of the country. These pictures are via Rutgers University.
The part of the storm that will be the main issue locally is actually off the coast of CA this morning. If you want to track it…let’s go up to about 18,000 feet or so and track it using the 500 mb map. Look for it as the “U” shaped dip in the overall jet stream in the western US…that moves into the Plains on Sunday and strengthens. It actually forms a rather significant upper level low or ULL.
Notice how it tracks just to the NW of the KC region…for snow lovers we want that system to track closer to the I-44 corridor as opposed to the I-80 corridor. It makes all the difference in the world…because the farther NW it goes the higher risk we’ll go into the dreaded “dry slot” of the storm system.
This occurs when drier air is wrapped into the storm from the SW part of the US…where the air is very dry to begin with normally. This is what it may look like when I show you the satellite pictures later Sunday night…
Notice the “comma” shape to the cloud pattern. Notice as well the darker colors coming up the I-35 corridor region. This is the “dry slot” of air that cuts off the main area of rain/snow. Notice as well that this is pretty much right on top of the KC region. If you’re a snow lover…no bueno!
The best snows from the storm are going to be flung into the cold air to the northwest of the area of low pressure. We very well may get some wrap-around snow with this…but the amounts shouldn’t be anything to significant for KC proper I don’t think.
The following map is valid into Sunday evening…concerning snow
same map showing total precipitation…again notice…towards the SE of KC and towards the NW of KC.
Why…because the storm is actually coming pretty much on TOP of the KC area. So after all those days of really high pressure the barometer will be heading down to about 998 mbs or about 29.47″ or so…considering we were closer to 30.70″ a few days ago in the core of the cold air…this is a pretty impressive bottoming out of air pressure I think.
IF the storm was coming more towards the I-44 corridor into southern MO instead of the I-80 corridor into NE and IA…we might have something more to talk about in the wintry weather picture…but since its so much farther towards the NW of KC…no good for snow lovers!
As is…we don’t even get a ton of rain from this anymore it appears. Some rain maybe on Sunday and perhaps some wrap around snow flakes on Monday,,,but nothing too significant is expected at this point.
So we may very well be stuck around 5″ of snow for the season so far.
The good news with this…is that south winds ahead of the storm will push our temperatures above average heading through the weekend. The cold front attached to the storm that will be moving through the area will not do so till about Sunday night into Monday AM…so that Sunday we’ll still be in a nice south flow of air..that IF we get some sunshine could push temperatures into the 60s IF we get enough sunshine through the clouds. The moisture overall won’t be that thick…so IF we get enough “mixing” we could break the lower clouds up a bit…get some sunshine and boom goes the dynamite! We’ll see about that in Sunday though.
Monday behind the storm…we get wrap-around cold air and maybe we’ll squeeze out some snow…especially toards northern MO and NE KS
In the end…we may end up with about 1/4″ of moisture from this system…and the farther south you go away fro KC…the less moisture there will be again.
Our feature photo comes from Al Hanna a blog reader who sent this in from Aruba!