Joe’s Weather Blog: Now comes more wind and a warm-up (FRI-4/2)

Weather

Happy Friday. The sun will again be shining but the winds will be increasing as the day moves along. Expect the wind gusts to be increasing to 30-40 MPH as well by this afternoon. So the one day break in the wind department is coming to an end

Temperatures with the south winds will respond. Highs today should be about 15° warmer than yesterday and that warmth will expand and increase through the early part of next week. Nothing too crazy locally but hopefully our first run to 80°

You’ll also notice increasing dew points later in the weekend and next week too…and that means it may “feel” more like late spring with increasing humidity levels.

We’re going to need some rain soon…and those chances are looking a bit better as well.

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Forecast:

Today: Sunny and windy. Gusts to 35 MPH with highs 65-70°

Tonight: Fair and breezy with lows in the upper 40s

This weekend: Sunny and breezy. Not as gusty but still 15-25 MPH winds. Highs in the mid to upper 70s.

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Discussion:

It was a pretty day yesterday but when looking over the satellite pictures…I noticed a lot of smoke over on the KS side from a ton of rangeland and pasture burning that was occurring.

This is common in light wind situations during March and early April before the terrain comes to life in a big way.

All those fires created quite a bit of smoke too.

Interestingly, I wouldn’t be shocked if today you smell or see some of that haze in our atmosphere.

Model data today shows this potential, especially in NW MO and E KS.

Just something I saw that I thought I’d bring to your attention.

Really there isn’t a lot of weather happening aside from the warm-up into early next week. I noticed yesterday that the top soil is already starting to show cracks from the dryness. This too is typical with our clay soils, there is a lot of moisture beneath the soil thanks to the rains over the last 4-6 weeks so that isn’t an issue.

The top 2-5″ of the soil though, where grass and shallow rooted plants utilize moisture is drying out. The lower dew points + some mild days and the wind all come together to allow this to occur. This issue will gradually get worse over the next 4 days+ with more wind, an ever increasing April sun angle and developing warmth…so when our next rain chance comes, we’ll need it to come through for us.

The candidate for this rain chance is way up into the NE Pacific Ocean in the Gulf of Alaska. It would be a system towards the SE of Alaska…and you can sort of see it on the water vapor loop.

That curl is our disturbance and that will be moving towards the region early next week.

You can trace this disturbance by going up to about 18,000 feet or so…see it SE of Alaska…and watch it go through various changes as it comes through NW Canada and then comes into the Pacific NW, through the northern Rockies and into the Plains.

Ahead of this…notice all the reds showing up in the Plains and Rockies. That is a developing warm air mass and the reason why we’re going to see temperatures surge to 15-25° above average ahead of what comes perhaps on Wendesday.

So that by later Wednesday we’ve go a rather interesting upper level storm approaching the region (timing may change a bit)

This will increase the rain chances, especially early Wednesday but I’m also watching Tuesday too. There may be some showers/storms somewhere out there as well.

With the system coming into the Plains and the increasing southerly component to the winds through the weekend, we’ll see increasing dew points to around 55-60°. That will be gulf moisture working it’s way northwards.

Tough to say at this point how unstable we’re going to get and if we have a severe weather risk with this set-up but it is the season now for those issues and near 60° dew points certainly can help that cause quite an bit. Bears watching.

Again though we’ll really need the rain from this to help out the grass etc as it really is getting green out there.

Fire weather concerns because of the dry terrain are certainly there today, especially in KS (with the wind) and in the northern Plains where drought is becoming more and more of an issue + the winds too up there. This may shows today’s fire weather issues

This is becoming a developing story for the upper Plains and the Dakotas…drought.

17% or so of North Dakota is in an extreme drought. The lack of snowfall this winter up there really plays into this situation and it was brought up more than a few times in the blog.

Have a great weekend.

The feature photo today is via William Johnson of the full “worm” moon from the other day.

“1st Super Moon of the Spring Season
Bates City, Missouri
3-28-2021 — in Bates City, Missouri”

Joe

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