Joe’s Weather Blog: We go up, we go down — and a chilly Thanksgiving? (MON-11/15)

Weather Blog

We’re halfway done with the month and about halfway done with meteorological fall. After a warm October, this month has been on the mildish side…we’re running 1° above average and the in the next few days (including a midnight high on Wednesday) we’re going to be increasing that average.

The next 2 weeks may feature more ups and downs…there are questions though about the orientation of the incoming cold air masses next week at least. Will they be directed toward the Plains or will we be on the western side of the colder air and the brunt would be more directed towards the Great Lakes region and the Northeast. We’ll work through those aspects over the coming week.

It may be a chilly to cold Thanksgiving here in KC…

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Forecast:

Today: Variable clouds, breezy and mild with highs near 65°. Windy too with gusts to 25 MPH into the middle of the afternoon.

Tonight: Breezy and mild with lows in the 40s

Tomorrow: Partly cloudy windy and warm with highs in the lower to mid 70s

Wednesday: Rain chances early in the morning with a cold front…turning chillier with temperatures in the 40s

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Discussion:

It’s been a somewhat mild and wet start to the fall season around here…we’re now about halfway done with meteorological fall so let’s take a look at things.

Temperatures compared to average
Moisture compared to average

This week will sort of summarize what we’ve been through…we’ll be up and then come back to near average I think.

Over the next 48 hours an increasing south and southwest wind will bring milder air and moisture up into the region. Dew points will be really increasing later tomorrow into early Wednesday morning though and that will be ahead of a cold front that will be coming towards us. The front should come in the Metro near or just before daybreak. That will shunt the mild weather away and replace it with more seasonable temperatures. The air mas coming in behind the front isn’t too cold though.

As a matter of fact with such a fast flow…after a coolish Thursday…we’re start to moderate a bit heading towards the weekend. You can see that rather clearly when looking and the broad view…we’re up at around 3000 feet or so showing temperatures. The cold air dips into the area on Thursday.

Thursday at Noon (white represents the 32° line at 3000′)

Then on Saturday afternoon notice how is moves away nicely.

So we should moderate for the weekend…50s are likely I think.

We’ll likely do the whole thing all over again early next week…with a warm-up then some sort of cool down. The issue though is next week is Thanksgiving week…and there are questions about the extent locally of the chill for Thanksgiving.

There are though some strong indications that we’re going to see a big ridge, once again, develop towards Greenland. That is important because that tends to force colder air in Canada southwards. Let’s go up to about 18,000 feet or so and show you how this comes together and what may happen.

For Thanksgiving Night

This is the map at 500 mbs…the reason why we always show this map on the blog is it sort of represents the middle of the atmosphere and can help steer the weather here at the surface. The yellows represent higher temperatures BELOW 500 mbs or about 18,000 feet, while the blues represent the opposite.

The 500 mb chart is a constant pressure chart which means that at every point on the chart the air pressure is 500 millibars or roughly 1/2 of the average surface pressure. BTW for a deeper dive into this this also shows the altitude in meters of the height. For example the 540 line represents a height of 540 decameters. 1 decameter is 10 meters. So in reality this represents 5400 meters up…which is where the pressure is 500 mbs. (or roughly 17,700′ above sea level). IF you really want to get into the weeds of this stuff there is good information here.

500 millibar information.

Anywho…we can see from the map above the anomalies (in colors). See the reds bursting in the Greenland region…that is significant. IF those reds up there, representing higher heights than average keep popping towards the left through the Polar region…that really shoves colder air southwards. Then with the dips in the flow…represented by the troughs (blue lines) those dips have the ability of tapping colder and colder air.

Voila we get colder. The orientation of those dips though is important in driving the cold air down the Plains or more towards the eastern US. Also note that dip over Alaska…that may be VERY important because that would flow right down through Canada and into the northern US…and that could deliver a real strong push of colder weather towards the end of the month or early December for a bit. This is certainly though not set in stone.

Again the key here is how long and how strong (how far north and west ) that Greenland ridge develops and then what happens with that eastern Pacific ridge. IF it comes eastwards then that Alaska thing may be directed farther north and we stay seasonable to mild at the end of the month.

Regardless a lot to track with this stuff.

The flow overall though is a pretty dry one. Yes there should be some rain early Wednesday morning but seeing these types of anomalies for the rest of the month…we we average about 1″ of moisture isn’t surprising with the forecast flow of air coming through the US

So the bottom line…ups (like the next 48 hours) and then downs. The record high tomorrow is 77°…it’s not out of the question but I wonder about at least some low clouds coming towards the area at some point in the afternoon knocking us down a few.

Our feature photo comes from Rachel Allen

Joe

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