Joe’s Weather Blog: Snowstorm to the NW of the KC area…and will next week be calmer? (FRI-2/22)

Good Friday morning…chilly out there but nothing to crazy in terms of cold weather. Actually it’s been a bit more tolerable these last couple of days. Heck we almost hit 40° yesterday. Tomorrow we will get into the 40s…briefly…in what has turned into a cold month of February. we’re running more than 4° below average for the month. I’ll have more stats in the blog for you because we’re now 1 week away from the start of meteorological spring. The major storm that we’ve been tracking for the last few days is going to pass towards the NW of the KC area (actually the heaviest snows will). The storm itself is coming on top of us. Which means an interesting weather day coming tomorrow at least.

  • Forecast:

Today: Increasing low clouds and sort of dreary this afternoon. Highs only in the 30s. There may be a few sprinkles out there too.

Tonight: Some rain showers likely with steady temperatures and lows in the mid>upper 30s

Saturday: Showers in the morning then perhaps a lull. During the afternoon additional showers and maybe even a rumble or two of thunder. Brief heavy rain is possible. A cold front  will come through sending temperatures from the 40s to the 30s in the evening. A brief shot of some snow showers are not out of the question. Tough to imagine we get a lot from that at this point.

Sunday: Blustery and cooler with highs in the 30s

  • Discussion:

Let’s sort of look at where we’ve been this month and this winter…we’ll get to the system that will create some heavy snow to the NW of KC a bit later.

As of today..we’re not even in the Top 40 when it comes to the coldest winters so far in the KC area. Let’s go with winter being from 12/1>2/28(29). Here are the average temperatures of the Top 40 coldest winters…

Where do we stand in that…with an average of 30.4°…we’re #43. Now maybe we could fudge that up a bit because there was some missing data in 1892-93 and 1894-95 (at least 19 days worth)…so let’s say we’re at least the 42nd coldest…aybe the 41st coldest (through today’s date this year and through the last day of February in all the other years).

From a snow standpoint though we are a bit higher. This time we have to expand the data and go back to starting the calculations on 10/1 and expand the backside through April. We’ve had some interesting months of October and April around these parts lately.

Now here is something perhaps more interesting…If we calculate the total precipitation from 10/1 through the end of February (and remember we still have almost a week to go to add on to this number this season) things are a bit stunning.

Never in our weather history going back to the 1880s have we had more moisture than we’ve had from 10/1 through then end of February this season. Never. I stumbled on this today.

We may get another 1/4″-3/4″ tomorrow to add to this. Does this mean a lot for the upcoming spring? I’m getting a lot of questions about that…so let’s look at the other 10 big wet periods from 10/1-2/28.

The 30 year moving average right now for moisture (melted snow and rain) from 3/1-5/31 is 11.42″. Let’s arbitrarily call anything within 1/2″ of that as about “near” average and in the data below that will be shown as -+. Below average (-) and above average (+)

1942: 10.88″ –

1929: 14.97″ +

1999: 15.54″ +

1932: 7.43″ –

1962: 8.33″ –

1985: 10.80″ –

1909: 11.47″ -+

1975: 11.55″ -+

2015: 14.42″ +

So really we have 4 dry years (2 very dry) and we have 3 wet years and 2 average years. So really there is NO correlation, at least looking at the Top 10 previous wet 10/1>2/28’s and then looking at what happens after that. Perhaps in March I may expand and look at the Top 25 to increase the sampling a bit more.

Nationwide the yellows show drier than average conditions since 10/1…

Look at ALL that moisture in the southern USA…my goodness that axis from eastern TX through the western Carolina’s significant.

From a temperature standpoint…this time the yellows start the above average temperatures and the greens are below average.

and IF we just look at the last 90 days…from around the time of the Blizzard onwards…

and a close-up…

and for the snow situation…

OK…about the storm. I think overall this is going to be a somewhat rare GFS model win mostly. The NAM and EURO models have converged into a NW MO/NE KS snow…and the NAM this morning is a bit farther towards the NW of that. Sort of in line with the GFS trends over the past couple of days.

It appears the upper level low will come out from Amarillo>near and north of Wichita>Hiawatha>then into southern IA. This expected track is even father NW that the data for the last couple of days. The surface low will track more towards St Joseph. With that expected track and assuming there isn’t a big shift southwards at the last moment (there better not be)…this brings the accumulating snow of significance much farther to the NW of KC.

Don’t necessarily focus on the specific numbers on the following map…but it gives you an idea of the geographical coverage.

The good news is that the main challenge next week, at least through Thursday, will be mostly the temperature forecasts it appears and that is fine by me…

OK that will be a wrap for today…have a great weekend and I’ll get an updated blow out tomorrow afternoon. I’m sort of thinking after weeks of blogging every day…maybe taking a day off or two from the blog starting Sunday. Let’s see what the temperatures give me to blog about.

Our feature photo comes from Austin Hamilton up in southern IA


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