KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Happy first day of summer KC! It arrived earlier this morning, just after 4 a.m. or so. Compared to the first day of winter, we get five hours and 30 extra minutes of daylight today.

It is also the longest day of the year in terms of daylight as well. We start losing seconds beginning tomorrow and by the last day of the month, we lose a whopping 30 seconds to the daylight. Eventually towards July 9, we lose our first minute of daylight compared to today.

I’m also back from vacation and while I was out for my annual trip to Arizona to take in the dry desert heat, you folks have been sweating pretty good around these parts. Today will be no exception to the sweat fest of the last 10 days or so.

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Kansas City Forecast:

Today: Hot and humid, breezy as well with highs in the mid-to-upper 90s with heat indices near 105 degrees. Storm chances increase before sunset, after 6 p.m. or so, especially on the north side.

Tonight: Storms around, the coverage won’t be 100% though. Some locally heavy rains and the potential of a locally strong wind gusts and perhaps some small hail with the storms will be with us. Temperatures by daybreak will be closer to 70 degrees.

Tomorrow: Variable, cloudy with perhaps some leftover morning storms. Not as hot with highs in the mid-80s.

Thursday: A lingering chance of some storms/rain in the AM…clouds may be an issue for awhile as well with highs in the 80s.

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Discussion:

So let’s see if I remember how to do these things called blogs.

Let’s start with the heat since there’s been so much of it. While we’ll get a break for a couple of days, it comes back for two more days on Friday and Saturday before breaking for a bit longer to finish the weekend.

Today will be the 12th day straight with temperatures above average in the metro. For the month, we’re running almost 4 degrees above average. And while there may be a 48-hour break in the extreme heat, we’ll add more to that over the weekend.

So it’s been hot and with all the moisture we’ve seen previously, that has turned into the steam heat that’s been an issue, as dew points have surged at times well into the 70s to close to 80 degrees. That is ripe and has added to the sultriness in the region.

Today we’re watching a cold front that will be moving into the region.

8 a.m. surface map. Notice the numbers in green: Those are the dew points. They do drop off behind the front.

As the front comes towards the area, it will be coming into lots of heat and dew points that should be close to 70 degrees or higher. That means there will be a lot of instability out there, and with the front colliding with that instability, if nothing else, at least scattered storms are possible. The hi-res models that we use are indeed showing at least some convection later today before sunset.

Here is one of the models showing a few storms by 7 p.m. Odds favor the northside for the initial development of the storms.

Then by 11 p.m.:

There may be lingering, likely weakened activity overnight into the mid-morning tomorrow. I won’t promise a lot of coverage to this. But it’s been dry on the south side these last couple of weeks, so hopefully the southside gets in on the moisture for awhile out of this front.

The good news is that we should see a break, noticeable, for a couple of days before the heat resurges in ahead of another cold front, and a stronger one, that moves into the area Saturday. Should the front slow down a bit on Saturday, that could be a setup for some stronger storms.

Temperatures on Friday will soar once again to the mid-90s and Saturday should be in the 90s as well before a more significant cooldown that comes into the region on Sunday. Highs may struggle to get to 80 degrees!

As a matter of fact in the medium range, Sunday through perhaps Tuesday look to be pretty decent from a temperature standpoint. The jet stream will be undergoing a realignment to some extent, allowing the more serious heat to transition off towards the Rockies and western U.S. and allowing the region to be into northwest flow aloft. This potentially could be periodic chances of storms, especially overnight thunderstorm complexes to become a thing again to finish the month and perhaps start July off.

Onwards.

Today is the first day of summer as mentioned at the top of the blog. Because of the tilt of the earth’s axis at 23.5 degrees, today is the day where the sun’s light hit’s the northern hemisphere the most directly. Hence summer.

It’s also “show your stripes” day as well. This is a campaign to show how the temperatures have changed in the last 130 years or so. This data from Ed Hawkins simply shows the changes in annual temperatures in a easy way to understand. The blue lines are cooler than average and the red lines are warmer than average.

Let’s start with the world.

Dataset from NOAA

Now North America:

Now the U.S.:

Now Missouri:

And finally Kansas:

What do you notice as your eyes go from the left to the right? More red bars, and deeper reds right? That simply shows you how the earth and then drilled down to the states have been getting warmer and warmer. There are small setbacks, so it’s not necessarily year-in and year-out for the Kansas and Missouri area, but it’s a persistent trend over the course of many years.

The concentrated warm strips on the left side are the dust bowl years, then locally we went into a small period of cooling. But really for the past 20-30 years (a blip in the climate record), it’s overall getting warmer and warmer… locally, nationally and across the globe.

If you want more information and additional details regarding methodology, check out the Show Your Stripes website.

So many cloud pictures sent to me over the past 10 days or so, here is one from Terri Bruntmyer up at Wood Heights, Missouri. This was taken on the 11th.

Nice to be back… see you on the news tonight.

Joe