KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Ides of March comes from the Latin phrase “Idus Martias”, usually occurring in the middle of the month connected to roughly the timing of a full moon. Technically though, the ides were timed to a full moon on the 15th, in either March, May, July or October. It’s really connected to the assassination of Julius Caesar by senators hoping to preserve the Roman Republic. It’s connected to foreboding.
Mother Nature will have her own version over the next 24 hours or so as a strong warmup accompanied by strong winds today allow temperatures to pop. Then it will be followed by a strong cold front that will then tank the temperatures tomorrow after lunch from near 60 degrees down to the 30s in a matter of a few hours. Then we’ll cap things off with a snow risk as well.
The Ides of March.
Kansas City Forecast:
Today: Increasing clouds this morning with filtered sunshine and windier conditions. Highs in the lower to mid-60s. Winds gusting to 30-40 mph.
Tonight: Variable clouds with a few showers possible towards daybreak tomorrow. Mild and breezy with lows in the low to mid-50s.
Tomorrow: Showers in the morning and mild with temperatures near 60 degrees by lunch as a strong cold front enters. Temperatures then switch with colder air pouring into the region. Temperatures tumble into the 30s by evening rush with strong northwest winds. Some rain is possible for an hour or two with the front’s passage. There may be some snow in the area in the evening.
Friday (St Patrick’s Day): Colder. Lows start in the low to mid-20s with afternoon highs near 40 degrees. Blustery winds will make it feel much chillier. At least the sunshine will help a bit.
Temperatures have started to warm up and the winds have started to increase in the last couple of hours. This morning we dropped to 36 degrees, and as I start the blog this morning, we’re already in the mid-40s heading up as clouds start to filter out the sunshine.
The satellite loop shows a lot of upper-level moisture streaming towards the region.
This moisture will tend to filter out the sunshine a bit today, and likely keep temperatures from exceeding 65 degrees. Still, compared to where things have been recently, we’ll take it for sure. The strong south winds will stay with us till the cold front (which isn’t even on the map at this point) moves in later tomorrow morning into the early afternoon.
This is not going to be an overly wet transition. Rain amounts will likely be under 1/4 inch for most areas, although potentially northwest Missouri can get a bit more than that. The main thing will be the temperature transition connected to all of this.
Take a look at the HRRR model for 1 p.m. Thursday.
And now for 7 p.m. Thursday.
Behind the front there remains some lift in the atmosphere as the colder air sweeps into the region with strong winds. It will be a race to see if we can see some snow from this with the lift still around in the colder air. Model data does show a few hundredths of an inch being generated from KC southwards after 7 p.m. tomorrow. That would be in the form of snow mostly.
It’s not out of the question that there could be some minor coatings in some areas. I’ve mentioned this before already, but it’s worth touching on again: Should there be wet areas out there at nightfall tomorrow evening (which is closer to 7:30 p.m.), dropping temperatures, and perhaps some snow flying around, it’s not out of the question there could be a few slick areas developing in the evening tomorrow, especially on bridges and overpasses. It’s worth watching just in case.
The colder air will pour into the region but with the strong winds and the mid-March sunshine temperatures on Friday may be able to get closer to 40 degrees or so, but with the winds blowing it will feel colder.
The colder air mass will get a reinforcing shot over the weekend as the blustery winds continue to chill things down on Saturday into Sunday morning. Morning lows will be in the teens over the weekend. The records are zero/3 degrees set back in 1923 on Saturday and Sunday morning, but we won’t get close to those levels.
Interestingly, the highs on Saturday may only be in the low to mid-30s. While not the coldest March 18, it will be likely in the top 10 or so. Here are the coldest highs for that date:
Whatever snows we sneak in won’t be that much and will be blowing all over the place.
Weather around the U.S.
Back east into New England though… this was an impressive storm. There are still about 150,000 without power.
Some areas with over 3 feet of heavy wet snow, knocking down powerlines and trees.
Worchester, Massachusetts, was an interesting forecast challenge. Elevations there can change quickly. One part of town had a few inches, but 10 miles away amounts were well over 24 inches. The elevations played a big role in this snow.
Out west, a combination of heavy rains (again) and heavy mountain snows (again) have left close to 190,000 without power. Both sides of the country are getting pummeled this last couple of days.
A lot are wondering when things are going to get a bit better temperature wise around these parts. Next week will again likely be all over the place with a couple of milder days, but still a few colder days.
It seems March has been indeed wild and wooly, especially lately the wooly side of things.
The feature photo comes from @KCDroneShow.