Joe’s Weather Blog: Summer fights to hold on (MON-7/12)

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Temperatures in the 70s in almost mid July… yes please. That was the case yesterday as highs struggled into the mid-70s in the area. Yesterday, KCI hit 74°, the coolest July 11 since 1978 and third-coolest overall. Impressive.

Today will be another day with highs well below average but the heat (and in time) the humidity will return tomorrow and Wednesday for a couple of days it appears. In the big picture, summer is still having a tough time holding for more than several days in a row it feels like. Either rain comes cooling things down, or a cold front comes in to take the edge off the heat.

All the big-time heat out west and into the northern Plains continues to maintain itself. It’s been really roasty in the deserts of southern California and elsewhere out there. Las Vegas tied its all-time high the other day at 117°. The state of Utah may have tied a state record for highs (117° in St George) the other day as well.

Until a big ridge moves across the central Plains and places us into the dome of heat, we’re just getting these transient heat interludes with nothing really locking into place. That will again be the case this week.

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Forecast:

Today: Clouds for awhile the gradual clearing from north to south this afternoon. Highs in the upper 70s.

Tonight: Clear and cool with lows 60-65°.

Tomorrow: Hotter but decent humidity levels for July with highs well into the 80s.

Wednesday: Hotter and more humid with highs into the lower 90s with heat index values near 100°.

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Discussion:

I’d say we’ve been pretty lucky this summer so far at least. We had those two hot days back in June with highs near 100° but since then not so bad. We’ve had one day this month with highs in the 90s, and another day is coming this week on Wednesday.

It seems though just as we heat up, something comes along (a front, a complex of storms, whatever) that takes the edge right off the worst of the heat. This isn’t too surprising because of the weather pattern favoring intense heat across the western U.S. and placing our area into northwest flow aloft every so often. That leads to fronts making it into the Plains on occasion. Those fronts give us these periodic rain chances.

Another is due towards the end of the week it appears before we get there though there is going to be a hot windy day in the area on Wednesday. The rain chances will come into play Thursday and Friday. Tough to say if we’ll be dealing with severe weather in that time frame but there will be again the potential of locally heavy rains for someone out there.

Once again on Thursday the atmosphere will be loading up with moisture. So anything that comes together will be able to crank out locally heavy rains. Tough to say at this point that we’re going to be the target of that potential, but it’s something to watch.

The rain chances though for Thursday and Friday will again knock down the heat that builds into the area on Wednesday to some extent. Instead of 90s, we go back to the 80s it appears, so again it gets more comfortable around these parts.

The rain has been mostly welcome locally. The grass looks pretty good for summer standards. Northern/northeastern Missouri has had too much, especially east of Chillicothe, where some areas on Friday had close to 10 inches worth. So they need some drying time. There is some ongoing flooding along the Grand River near Sumner and also the Chariton River (major) in central Missouri.

Meanwhile today, we’re still dealing with the upper-level storm that is spinning around. We’re on the northwest side of this system.

It will gradually pull away later today but a lot of clouds are expected into the mid-afternoon hours. So temperatures will be slow to recover before we clear out later on.

Also of note for tonight: Venus and Mars are very near each other in the western sky after sunset.

via EarthSky

The feature photo is from Sheila Jackson out towards Lexington, Missouri. Pretty shot with the courthouse in the foreground.

Joe

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