I’ll be on #staycation for the next week or so…the rest of the team will be handling the evening shows for me…but I will continue blogging on a daily basis as long as we continue to have snow threats…so expect daily blogs into Monday barring any major snow reduction trends.
With that said there won’t be any real clarity on the situation through today and perhaps early tomorrow too. My hope is that one the actual disturbance that will affect us gets going…things will come into focus better. I should note…some meteorologists are pointing to a system in the NE Pacific as being “the” storm…my analysis is that it’s not “the” future system for us…the one they’re pointing towards may briefly affect us on Saturday morning. The area that I’m watching is the western Aleutians wayyyy out towards Alaska. I’ll show you what I mean in the discussion.
Hey at least it will be mild through tomorrow…before we turn colder into the weekend and that is the 1st step to getting snow locally.
Today: Windy through the middle of the afternoon. Gusts have been to near 40 MPH this morning but will come down later today. Skies should remain mostly cloudy overall. Highs may get to 55° if we get enough thin spots in the clouds
Tonight: Variable clouds with lows 30-35°
Tomorrow: Variable clouds and mild with highs in the low>mid 50s. Not as windy. There may be some brief rain>snow showers at night
Saturday: Mostly cloudy,blustery and colder with temperatures only 30-35°.
Sunday: Cloudy and blustery with a chance of some snow…this is still though not set in stone…the higher chances are later in the day into the overnight I think. Highs only in the 30° range.
So we’re still sort of watching this whole evolution of things really. Nothing is cemented in place regarding the snow situation. I’m somewhat more confident that we’ll see snow…especially during the 1st part of the day on Monday. This may well impact schools and the commute on Monday morning and potentially create lingering issues into the afternoon rush.
Strangely I have a bit more confidence in Monday than I do on Sunday…the life of a meteorologist I guess.
Last year/winter it seemed every single storm was well forecast from a few days out…every single one. This winter I’m not sure we’re going to have the same “success”. NOT having the same “success” is more typical for this part of the country during the winter season. As they say…our weather relationship this winter may be “complicated” at times.
With all that said…let’s start out positively.
Milder winds are cranking out there today. We’re in the mid 40s as I type this…and we should be in the 50s before the day is done although l clouds will remain it appears for most of the day. The stronger winds will gradually fade away later this afternoon
Tomorrow looks pretty good too…maybe even a bit more sunshine and not as much wind.
Now the weekend…
A cold front will come through the area Friday night into early Saturday. Some rain/snow is possible with the transition to colder air overnight Friday into early Saturday. Yesterday I was concerned about some weird things that could happen IF various features in the atmosphere would be “synced” up. It doesn’t appear that will happen which is a good thing. Doesn’t mean we won’t get precip or a wintry mix at times…but hopefully no real issues.
The one thing I will watch is IF we get wet conditions for a few hours with dropping temperatures..and any potential for black ice. My hope is that the wind will help dry out things before that becomes an issue.
So it will get colder over the weekend as colder air flows in Saturday into Sunday.
Now about Sunday…and this gets really complicated.
1st thing is what we’re tracking. I saw this tweet from my colleagues at the NWS in Topeka…and I agree with everything the tweet said last night except what they were actually pointing towards as the culprit…
A storm system that is currently over the Pacific Ocean could bring accumulating snow to the area on Sunday and Monday. It is far too early to pin down the specifics of where and how much snow will fall, so please stay tuned for future forecast updates. #kswx pic.twitter.com/hgv9uusXqz
— NWS Topeka (@NWSTopeka) December 12, 2019
Here is where I disagree…and this is a matter of semantics I guess. Let’s go up to about 18,000 feet and track the disturbances at that altitude…
Hey I don’t blame then for looking at this eye candy on the satellite picture..look at the system that many think is “the” system…off the coast of AK…you can see it swirling…
My argument to that is tracking that feature that looks like eye candy right now…notice what happens to it…it essentially falls apart.
You have to stare at the animation above for a minute or two. It goes from today through Tuesday. The blue/whiteish areas out there are what I’m looking at. Look for the “dips” in the flow as well. Notice that 513 upper level low just sort of fall apart…while new energy digs at the bottom of the remnants of it and are slung towards the western US later in the weekend. That energy that gets slung is in the western Aleutians this morning…and that’s why I think that is the feature to track.
So with that off my chest…
What happens from there. Well I think some additional clarity will come when that Aleutians system comes together over the next 36 hours…when that happens…I think we’ll get better model output to increase my confidence.
The issue really is Sunday. The GFS model is sort of by itself to some degree but the newest NAM model is trying to stir something for the day on Sunday. The NAM has some light snow developing in the morning on Sunday…potentially being an impact for tailgaters getting to the game early. The GFS which was VERY bullish for days Sunday AM is sort of backing off slightly now in the timing but brings accumulating snow as a round 1 into the area during the game itself. The EURO model says “nope” everything wait till the night and Monday AM because of dry air.
The Canadian model brings a dusting of snow into the area Saturday night…then nothing really on Sunday with a snowstorm on Monday.
I’m in two camps with this…I think the data supports the better accumulating snows coming Sunday night into Monday…perhaps a plowable snow too…and my confidence is somewhat higher in a more impactful event on Monday…it really is a healthy wave that is forecast to come towards us during the pre dawn hours of Monday.
My conundrum is still Sunday itself…will we get that 1st wave of snow, probably light, but potentially still a nuisance for the roads depending on the timing for the game. That I’m still not sold on because of the dry air that may still be in place chewing on the snow coming towards the area.
The GFS cranks out 1-3″ of snow Sunday PM with 2-8″ of additional snow from the SE (lighter) to the NW (northern Platte Co) heavier.
The NAM has 1-2″ of snow earlier on Sunday before the game. It doesn’t get through the Monday scenario yet.
The Canadian has a dusting to 2″ of snow from the north to the south (heavier) later Saturday night into Sunday mid-day with a thump of snow coming afterwards on Monday. An additional 2″ SE of KC to another 8+” NW of KC towards the Leavenworth area.
The EURO has a barely dusting Sunday with a 4-12″ storm Monday from the NW to the SE (heavier).
So there is a LOT on the table…
Again I think there is an increasing chance of an accumulating snow later Sunday into Monday as the main part of the storm…confidence in the early “appetizer” accumulating snow is lower in my opinion.
Monday is the day, to me, that we really need to watch for.
Again the complications are the dry air in place ahead of whatever comes on Sunday…how long it could fight the incoming snow…and will the round 1 snow be more towards the SW of KC or into at least part of the Metro. It should be cold enough to stick almost right away I think.
OK that’s enough for now…tomorrow I may put out some maps…again hopefully a bit more clarity coming but I’m not convinced that will be the case…
Our feature photo is from Jeff Johnson down towards Heritage Park in JOCO last night. The full “cold” December moon on display…the last one for the decade too!