KANSAS CITY, Mo. — I’ll let the gang be more specific concerning the weekend forecast, but I did briefly want to update you concerning the potential. Since this thing is some five days away, and the storm itself that will bear watching hasn’t even hit the coastline yet and gotten properly sampled by the upper air balloon network there really isn’t any point in getting to involved with it. Suffice it to say precipitation chances will be increasing, and while the type of precip may be in question (mainly right at the beginning, and perhaps towards the very end, it appears to me that the bulk of the storm that heads our way will be mostly in the form of rainfall. Here is the storm now…
The storm in question is out in the Pacific Ocean, off the coast of British Columbia. It will be dropping down the west coast then cutting off for a period of time in the desert Southwest. This point is all agreed upon by the models. Odds then favor the storm, or most of the storm ejecting out and moving our way. How much of the storm ejects, will it be shearing apart as it does so, and how quickly all this happens is still a bit iffy from so far away.
There is likely to be some pretty chilly and dry air that will be in place before the storm gets here. Friday will be chilly and rather dry, so as the storm ejects their is going to be a period of time where the atmosphere is going to need to get saturated. This may take awhile and it’s possible that any precipitation that can fall FRI night or SAT AM would do nothing but help saturate the atmosphere and not really reach the ground. In these scenarios, with the lower part of the atmosphere being chilly and dry, anything that would reach the ground, possibly could briefly be in the form of some sleet. Above the ground, it’s likely that the atmosphere will be too warm to support the snowflakes from reaching the ground.
Should the storm eject farther to the NW, then we’ll warm things up enough to see a mostly rain event out of this (in my opinion that seems most likely at this point). IF the storm passes to the south of here, then it’s more likely we could see more frozen precipitation. Again I’ll let MT and DH get more specific about those chances tonight and tomorrow. My feeling is that there may be a lot of talk about waiting for the atmosphere to get saturated since it will initially be so dry.
On Saturday, assuming the models now are close, we’re probably looking at mostly a rain event. The EURO model has all rain and really no chance of much else. The GFS is more bullish with frozen precip sometime Saturday Afternoon. The GFS ensembles are suggesting the potential for an accumulating snow and the Canadian would suggest perhaps a few flakes of snow on the tail-end of this with no accums likely.
Again my feeling is that this will probably be a mostly rain event for us. Areas up towards the NE border may be more vulnerable for frozen precipitation over the weekend. Obviously things can and probably will change and it will certainly give us something to talk about for a few days.