Joe’s Weather World: Near record highs and weekend storm threats (THU-5/16)
It’s Thursday and there is a feel of summer in the air out there with temperatures today soaring and the winds blowing…it’s going to feel more like the dead of summer out there, except that everything is lush and green right now…that probably won’t be the case over the summer months…at least not to this extent. The main focus of the blog is on the nebulous severe weather risks over the next 5 days or so…the Saturday situation is rather murky…I’m more interested really in early next week…and that’s been the case now for the last few days. Interestingly…a lot of chasers have gone rather quiet from all the hyperbole that was out there earlier in the week regarding the next few days…not hearing those “historic” and “epic” words right now in describing the set-up coming for the next 3 days at least.
Today: Mostly sunny, windy and warm with highs near 90°. The record today is 94° set in 1931…we won’t get there but it will feel like it perhaps with the dew points being well into the 60s. Winds will gust to 30 MPH or so.
Tonight: Breezy and warm with lows closer to 70°
Friday: Partly cloudy and remaining hot with highs well into the 80s. Winds gusting to near 30 MPH
Saturday: Variable clouds with showers/storms, especially in the PM hours. Highs well into the 70s
Sunday: Morning showers end with cooler temperatures and highs only near 70°…perhaps only in the 60s. Windy as well.
A hot one come this way today with a lot of wind out there. Here are the hottest 5/16 days going back over the past 130 years or so.
Considering we had a record low less than a week ago…pretty decent turnaround. Not that uncommon…for the Spring at least.
Nothing of note through tomorrow weatherwise aside from the heat…and this pales in comparison to the really warm weather we endured LAST May which has been written about in previous blogs this week…plus this is temporary with cooler weather returning on Sunday.
So there are many reasons why Saturday has murky severe weather risks of significance. I want to quantify that because storms that are minimally severe…the near 60 MPH winds and the quarter sized hail…are by definition severe but I really don’t get fired up about those anymore in reality…they’re warnings have been a sore point for me for years and I suspect that that may be the case again Saturday. I’m not letting my guard down at this point, and neither should you…and some of the new data this morning is supportive of more afternoon activity which would bear watching
The set-up locally though is just not overwhelming to me. The SPC has us in a “slight” risk…and in reading the discussion there really doesn’t seem to be a lot of focus on our part of the region…the focus was up towards IA and down towards AR and TX.
So there’s that.
The chances of storms/rain is 100% I think at about this point. There will be rain out there at some point during the day…whether it be in the AM or PM…there will probably be rain/storms out there in the afternoon/evening as well. The winds above us will be going pretty good on Saturday so would I be shocked if there are random warnings issued. What activity we have before 6PM or so might be minimum criteria type stuff…and that isn’t set in stone right now either. There might be a weird juxtaposition of favorable ingredients up towards northern MO for something more significant according to the new data this morning
IF there is going to be anything more nasty…it would be in the afternoon/evening…and this has been what I’ve said now for days and days I think. Could things change…sure…will we be watching for changes…sure…but sometimes, and this year the severe weather risks have been a bit “wonky” locally (so far at least), things are murky for bigger than minimum criteria storms and that’s where I am right now with Saturday
Even IF we don’t have the AM activity…and even IF we get into the 80° range in the PM…we start losing the better atmospheric winds for the stronger storms…the better shear…during the later afternoon at least…so there just seems to be a few factors not coming together correctly for anything of significance. Again to stress there may well be severe thunderstorm warnings somewhere out there…but just how bad the storms really will be is a question in my mind.
The atmosphere overall looks to be a chaotic mess in the evening on Saturday and those situations are not exactly known for big severe weather issues. Again another factor to tap on the breaks to whatever social media messages/posts that you may see from others.
Again IF this was me and I had a big party planned for Saturday (and there are a ton of those this weekend) I would be getting a tent for rain protection…and I wouldn’t be comfortable planning a perfectly dry day/night…I do think it will rain…I’m really questioning the severity of the storms overall…and that is my point of all this.
The storm itself will move up towards IA Sunday and we’ll see a return to west and NW winds locally…that will tug down cooler air again…so after the showers end well before lunch Sunday…we should be in pretty good shape to finish the weekend…and it will be cooler.
The set-up that I’m a more interested in is Monday night into Tuesday AM…as the front that brings us the cooler air to finish the weekend starts retreating northwards later Monday. Now that could be a recipe for bigger storms…bigger winds and bigger hail…and IF you’ve read the blog that’s been the time period I’ve been more interested in since earlier this week. There are some negatives to that though too…including too many storms fighting with each other for potentially limited surface instability. More on that over the weekend.
So I mentioned the “wonky” severe weather season thus far. Yesterday I talked about how MO has had 44 reports of tornadoes (mostly southern MO) while KS has had 20 and OK has had only 24. Meanwhile in IA…0. That is an artifact of the colder April/May thus far…especially up in IA.
The one thing though that needs to be mentioned…is the rain…and the potential for another 2-5″ worth from Saturday though next weekend. We’ve had 3.6″ of rain (some more) since the 1st of May…and the 2nd part will be just as wet…if not wetter.
So flooding may again become the overall bigger issue before Memorial Day…
This is A LOT of moisture and since the ensemble averages smooths things out…it’s probably underdone since we’re dealing with so much convection…
That’s a lot of water entering the MO River basin…again. The reality is that some areas (maybe not us but then again…) will see over 10″ of rain…
Our feature photo comes from Tedd Scofield of last nights waxing Moon in our skies.