KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Did you know that we’ve had the snowiest start to January in 10 years here in Kansas City? Yup, 5.3 inches worth. The last time we had this much snow to start the year was back in 2011. We ended up with 34 inches of snow from the new year through the 15th of May in 2011.

The thing is at least the data really isn’t too thrilled with much snow around here for quite some time it appears. No big storms. We may have to try and rely on weak disturbances coming down in the flow from the northwest to generate any weather excitement, and there aren’t any candidates so far.

What we will have is more ups and downs in the temperature department. A good up today and a crashing down tomorrow morning.

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Forecast:

Today: Variable high clouds, a good deal of filtered sunshine, but still pretty mild with highs in the low-to-mid-50s. Breezy as well, so it will feel a bit cooler.

Tonight: Whatever we are at midnight is the likely high, probably in the mid-to-upper 30s. Temperatures will drop from there. We’ll be in the 20s around daybreak and keep dropping.

Wednesday: Cold and windy. Lots of clouds as well with afternoon highs in the lower 20s but with the wind chills, we’ll be closer to zero. Gusty northwest winds of 30 mph likely at times.

Thursday: Pretty chilly, despite the lack of snow cover. Highs in the teens with lows in the morning in the lower single digits. More sunshine as well.

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Discussion:

Let’s look back to the snow situation, again 5.3 inches worth to start 2022.

How did we fare for the rest of the snow season from the New Year through the middle of spring in the years above? Take a look:

Notice a few years: Back to 2013, from a trace through Jan. 17, to 28 inches afterwards. Then ’16, ’17, ’18 weren’t very good for snow lovers with a slow start and a crummy finish.

So it can change around here. Or it won’t.

EURO ensembles for the next 15 days
GFS ensembles for the next 15+ days

Nothing too exciting when looking at almost 80 model outputs. There is one of those 80 or so though that says “Hey look! There’s a chance.” ;)

After a nice mild day today with 50s likely (and if the filtered sunshine is a bit brighter, maybe mid-to-upper 50s for some), the focus shifts to the colder air that’s coming into the area.

The push is moving over the U.S.-Canadian border this morning.

It’s not crazy cold but that air mass is going to be quite a bit colder locally compared to today. With our mild start in the mid-30s this morning, after a nice warmup today, tomorrow afternoon will be a tough pill to swallow with the winds and the cold.

Of note as well: The really strong core of the high pressure moving through the Midwest over the coming days. A 1046 mb core shows up as roughly 30.9 inches on the home barometer.

For timing, this starts at midnight Wednesday. 12Z is 6 a.m., 18Z is noon, 0Z is 6 p.m. etc

Now that area of pretty extreme high pressure will modify as it moves through the upper Midwest, but the reason why it’s that “high” is that this is cold dense air that will be moving through the middle of the country. The “weight” of that cold air mass exerts a downwards force. That results in sinking air, hence “high” pressure. The air around that high circulates in a clockwise fashion and blows OUT of high pressure. By later Friday morning, the core of the high shifts eastwards and we start getting on the backside of the high with the flow around it. That allows the winds to shift towards the southeast and then south, bringing less cold air into the area and we start to warm up again.

Saturday should be back into the 30s and Sunday remains to have potential to warm up well into the 40s, if not 50s for tailgating. The problem is another front is likely to come into the area at some point later Sunday. but it might not have too much cold air with it. I don’t want to over promise, but I nudged up the highs yesterday for the afternoon and may nudge them a few more degrees today.

The only thing about the immediate next seven days or so is if one of these waves coming from the northwest has more semblance of strength than what the data shows, and it’s possible. Not uncommon to see model data flatten these incoming waves too much in these flat and fast-flow regimes. It’s something I’ll be paying attention too.

That’s about it for today. The feature photo is from Bob Johnson out towards Lenexa, Kansas.

Joe