Joe’s Weather Blog: The Ida clean-up begins + rain chances this week (MON-8/30)

Weather Blog

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As we finish off the month, summer continues this week in Kansas City. Overall, above average temperatures are expected into the holiday weekend.

We may see some sort of cool down at some point over the weekend or early next week, but it’s a warm-ish pattern overall for the area.

Ida was obviously the big story over the weekend, so I have a lot of I want to show you regarding the storm. It’s continuing to weaken but will spread a lot of rain along its path all the way through New England this week.

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Forecast:

Today: Variable clouds and warm with highs well into the 80s. There may some isolated storms after the middle of the afternoon into early this evening.

Tonight: There are likely storms for northern Missouri which will try and turn southeast. How far south they get in the wee hours of the morning remains to be seen. Lows in the upper 60s.

Tomorrow: Any storms that move in will move out in the morning. This may help keep us a bit cooler tomorrow. Highs in the low-to-mid-80s (if that).

Wednesday: Variable clouds with a 20% chance of a storm. Highs in the mid-80s.

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Discussion:

Let’s start with Ida because I have a lot of stuff I want to show you.

First off, what a forecast. Any politician or whomever that says we didn’t know it was coming, we didn’t know it would be this bad, no one said it would be like this, blah… blah… blah is lying, not telling the truth, or covering their you-know-whats. There were some track wobbles after landfall to a very minor extent and that may have heightened some damage in eastern Louisiana specifically, but still this was a great overall forecast.

Almost everything that Ida did was more or less expected. First the path. Here is a look at all the National Hurricane Center forecasts for Ida. I’d say getting it to within 50 miles from days out is pretty dang good.

A remarkable forecast aided by computer models that didn’t waver around too much from almost the beginning.

It was a fascinating storm to watch as it came ashore, strengthening as it was moving onshore, and even through the wet lands of southern Louisiana.

Ida was a strong category 4 hurricane at landfall. Katrina was a weakening category 3 at landfall, but Katrina was over the Gulf waters for a longer period of time and was quite a bit larger, helping to create bigger storm surge compared to Ida. Still though, from a pressure standpoint, Ida was one of the strongest to come ashore in Louisiana in their hurricane history.

Ida took a bit of time to hit the strong intensification phase that we thought was coming, but once it started to get going on Saturday night, it went big, peaking at around 150 mph.

This is what it was like as hurricane hunters were flying around the storm’s center:

Another view from the eye of the storm:

So Ida had stronger winds than Katrina, and a lower air pressure than Katrina at landfall, but Katrina actually had more energy spread out and destructive than Ida had.

Regardless, Ida packed a punch, and it will take a long time for Louisiana to recover.

The above shows winds near 150 mph in a gust (once you dive into the data more than the image shows) plus another stronger gust of 172 mph aboard this ship. Now there are some trivial questions about how high up the instrumentation was etc., but you get the point.

Here is some additional data showing the stronger winds:

Tacking on:

Many areas of southeast Louisiana were hit badly. New Orleans took a big hit as well.

This is remarkable:

In a sense though, its proximity to New Orleans as it made a northwards turn after slowing to a crawl in southern Louisiana was interesting. This prolonged the effects of the storm in eastern Louisiana.

Because of all the wetland and marshland of southern Louisiana, when Ida did make “landfall” southwest of Grand Island near Dulac, it didn’t weaken for about six more hours really. It was organizing until the end, and in further research, may be upgraded to a category 5 storm in the end.

The winds and surge though were impressive at landfall as you might imagine:

Sound up for this next video showing what it’s like to go through something like this:

I haven’t seen details on how big the surge was, but this gets the point home:

Obviously Louisiana, and to some extent Mississippi have the main power issues this morning. Via poweroutage.us:

The power for some folks will be out for weeks, and the city of New Orleans has some real rough days ahead as all the transmission lines have fallen coming into the city.

Not a good situation there:

It was quite the storm, and likely the name Ida will be retired as well. The colored areas below are batches of satellite-detected lightning.

OK, let me move on because I can write about this all morning.

Our weather in brief: Questionable pop-ups this evening, most stay dry. Then there is a chance of something coming southwards or southeastwards overnight into Tuesday and affecting the area tomorrow morning. Again, not a slam dunk on that situation. If it does blow through the region tomorrow, we may stay in the 70s all day long, but again, iffy on that one.

Aside from that a warmer pattern settles into the area for the rest of the week.

OK that’s it for today.

The feature photo comes from Kevin Walker via @swillis524 on Twitter.

From east of Sedalia, Missouri

Joe

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