Joe’s Weather Blog: Needing the rain! (WED-9/29)

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It’s a pretty start to the day in the area as skies are fair to partly cloudy and temperatures are down into the 60s. Today will feature more clouds in the region compared to virtually cloudless conditions over the past few days. It will also be warm but likely not as hot as it has been lately too.

Also there is at least a chance of some afternoon showers or storms around. The activity would be pretty isolated I think…but at least this is a start to the anticipated weather change that we’ve been talking about for awhile now. We could use is for sure because as I’ve mentioned in the last blog…the combination of sunshine, hot weather, winds and dry air have all chipped in and dried things out big time for many areas in western MO and eastern KS.

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Forecast:

Today: Variable clouds with a few isolated storms possible in the afternoon or evening. Coverage doesn’t look all that great though. One of those days to watch skies to your south because if something develops to the south it would be moving northwards. Highs today near 85°

Tonight: More or less the same thing with lows in the mid 60s

Tomorrow: The activity should be a bit more widespread but there will be numerous dry times mixed in . Highs around 80°

Friday: Same with highs well into the 70s.

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Discussion:

In some ways the forecast is easy these next few days but in other ways it’s not. The easy part is that it should rain in many areas, if not all between this afternoon and Sunday morning. The hard part is when and where. That will vary from place to place in the region and that’s why I’ve been stressing for a couple of days to just be watching radar. Whatever develops to the south would be moving northwards. What develops to the west will be moving northwards (mostly) and in time heading into the weekend more towards the east.

Little disturbances will be the key to these rain chances through Friday. How they form…when they form and how well the generate showers/storms will also be a big factor in rain around the region. These disturbances don’t exist yet…so tracking things that don’t exist is tough to do as you might imagine.

We do know the set-up though favors these periodic rain chances. A slow increase in moisture at the surface and aloft will be one ingredient. Dew points which have been in the 50s will be increasing into the 60s over the coming days.

The next ingredient is aloft…as the atmosphere overall sees a rapid increase in moisture starting today and more or less continuing into the weekend. So that aspect is ready to be tapped into by these disturbances coming up from the south and southwest.

The next ingredient is small areas of lift generated by a fading upper level disturbance. That fading disturbance aloft though will be a bit temperamental. These weak baby disturbances (which don’t exist right now) are going to be the key to getting any organization to the the incoming rain chances. The problem is that these little disturbances being generated by the fading bigger wave aloft will sort of have a mind of their own. When and where they develop over the coming days will be the main issue in timing out the rain.

They also will be moving quickly so the rains will come…then stop…the perhaps come again hours later. The bottom line is that it won’t be raining continuously over the next 3 days. There will be dry times mixed in. Perhaps the more favorable dry times are during the 1st part of the days…but that could change as well.

The final ingredient and the one that may bring the more widespread rains on Saturday is a stronger and more cohesive upper level storm that will be moving into the Plains on Saturday. This should focus and intensify the lift around the area AND when you add in a cold front pushing into this area…it really should result in rains that are a bit more frequent and a bit more widespread. This would be for Saturday especially so you may want to be thinking of a plan B there.

The end result though of all this is some much needed moisture on the ground. Data is stillc ranking out roughly 1-2″ of rain in parts of the area…odds are we’ll average out to 3/4″-1.5″ for the region as a whole with some areas perhaps seeing a bit less than that.

Here are a look at the total rains expected into Saturday evening with the potential of a bit more beyond that into Sunday morning.

EURO
GFS
ICON
CANADIAN

So a few things…one…you can see some areas may not get as much. Don’t necessarily focus on precise locations of those areas in the maps above…remember these help with potential but in this situation (as well as others) the placement of these waves that generate the rain are next to impossible to reliably model. So that’s why we’re seeing variations when it comes to heavier rain placements and two…since there may be some thunderstorm activity with this…some areas could outperform since the atmosphere as a whole will be pretty soupy.

Since we’ve been so dry in many areas…I’m not overly concerned about any flooding issues really. We’re running 1.7″ below average for the month so far…so the rain is certainly needed for most.

The tropics are still active and we have another 2 months of hurricane season to go through.

Sam is still going pretty strong…

The shift slowly transitions back towards the Caribbean and Gulf through October as the Atlantic season winds down.

Our feature photo comes from @swillis524 down at Melvern Lake from the other day.

Joe

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