Joe’s Weather Blog: Not exactly the best St Patrick’s Day (SAT-3/17)

Good morning…early blog for you because I’m hanging around and waiting for the big parade. Typically some 200-300-???,000 people show up and line the streets. We’ve had a great stretch of parade days on the 17th…with the feeling of spring in the air…today…not so much. Spring by the way officially begins on Tuesday…and Tuesday is looking pretty gray too. The main issue with the forecast is what happens on Monday and whether the next system gives us that needed 1/2″-1″ of rain.


Today: Cloudy and cold with highs in the 40s. Wind chills will be in the 30s for most of the day. There may be some thin spots in the clouds later this afternoon.

Tonight: Clouds may hang tough for most of the night into the morning seasonable with lows 30-35°.

Sunday: The morning may start pretty gray…then not too bad in the afternoon with a mix of clouds and sunshine. Highs will be well into the 50s

Monday: Rain may be an off and on proposition in the morning. There are still questions though about how much and whether or not the bigger rains are south of the KC Metro area. There may well be some afternoon sunshine and highs may get into the low-mid 50s


March weather as we all know can be a fickle thing…warm…cold…rainy…snowy (ha…who am I kidding). The weather on the 17th does go all over the place. Here’s a look back since 2000.

Last year it was 73° and the year before in the 60s. this will be the coldest 3/17 since 2013.

Today will be a struggle.

The system from yesterday has moved towards eastern MO…and is weakening as it falls apart into the OH Valley. The morning surface map shows the colder air (temperatures in RED) spilling southwards.

Now IF we’d get sunshine, we’d warm up a bit today. We average mid 50s for highs. That though is going to be late in arriving (the sun) if it does at all. This satellite picture below will update automatically through the daylight hours. You can see the extent of the low clouds in the region.

Here is a closer view…


Tough to warm up much with that look…

Tomorrow should be better but it may take a while to finally clear out the clouds…but it won’t last long as the next system quickly develops in the Plains.

The issue with the next system is that the surface low passes all the way from Oklahoma City>Ft Smith>Memphis. That’s pretty far south. So what rains develop down into SE KS and S MO will rotate northwards then westwards then southwestwards. The question is how far north does the rain get before stopping and spinning back south.

The GFS brings the moisture right up towards KC…and stalls it out.

The EURO doesn’t even get the rain into the KC Metro…

The only model that does is the NAM model…and that model is freaking out a bit in how it’s handling the storm. Creating intense rising air motions, which in turn cool the atmosphere and dump the rain and even some heavy snow in the area. I won’t post the NAM model.

The storm in question is spinning in N CA right now…

A rather significant piece will break off and move into the Rockies then into the southern Plains on Monday.

Here is a look at how the GFS handles things…as we go up to about 18,000 feet or so. This will help us track the upper level storm that will be spun out of the big western US trof.

The NAM model has this feature somewhat farther north. IF it were to be more correct and IF we could chill the atmosphere down…things would be significantly different and whiter. Right now though that seems less possible than possible.

The thing is IF we weren’t going to warm up as much tomorrow…and IF the bottom 5,000 feet of the atmosphere was colder…I’d be somewhat concerned that the NAM model was onto something…and be worried about a heavy wet snow in the region (or at least parts of the area). Again right now…doubtful.

The data this afternoon actually isn’t that great for the I-70 and north corridor. Surer there should be at least some rain for awhile on Monday morning…but whatever happens will be more concentrated farther south of the KC metro area and then quickly end in KC towards lunch. With some afternoon sunshine possible.

I’m going to slide this forecast more towards the EURO thoughts regarding the rain totals…yes…something but my goodness look how little to nothing it gets to be on the north and northeast side of KC. Meanwhile the southern part of the viewing area looks promising for a soaker rain…hopefully at least 1/2″ if not over 1″ in spots.

Our feature photo comes from Daphne A. Burns via Twitter. After the crazy weather yesterday (temperature wise)…there was a nice sunset!

Have a great weekend…next update Sunday afternoon




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  • Nick

    Looking at the precip from the last 7 days on the rainfall maps run by St. Joe is southwest of the area of precip that lies NW to SE to our NE… and this next system looks to produce a ‘mirrored” image of that rainfall pattern…. to our SW, really I hope we are not going to do this a SECOND year in a row up here, very frusterating maps.

    • Joe Lauria

      Understand that frustration. Now we’re getting dynamic storms and yet nothing great really comes from them…I think we need the better spring atmospheric moisture but then will the storms still come like they are now.