Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Storm chances return - and a bad winter ahead??

Hope everyone is having a great week so far. Our weather has been relatively quiet so far this week, but we are about to see a few storms tonight/early Thursday and then leftover moisture from Odile will get here Friday night and Saturday. If you missed it last night at 10, I showed the rainfall comparison for different areas of the state. I know some had heavy rains over Labor Day weekend, but the majority of Kansas continues to show precipitation deficits (Wichita down about 3.5" and Salina is almost 4" on the low side)

Yearly rainfall checkup
The moisture from Odile will arrive late Friday night (probably after the high school football games) and should combine with a front coming in from the northwest on Saturday. We definitely don't want the cold front arriving sooner than the tropical moisture, or the heavier rainfall will end up passing us to the south in Oklahoma. Confidence is high we will get some nice rain and storms to start the weekend. 

Forecast Rainfall from Wednesday morning - Sunday morning
Severe weather is unlikely in these situations, but with such rich tropical moisture, heavy rainfall is a strong possibility. The main question is where will the heaviest moisture end up. As we've been showing, the bullseye of rain will likely be across southern Kansas. In those areas, 1-2 inches+ seems very reasonable, but as is usually the case, some will get more and other areas less. 

Fake winter forecast on Facebook and Twitter
Several of you have reached out to our weather staff concerned (or excited) about the winter forecast. This image has created quite the buzz on social media, but we can assure you it's FAKE!! In this day and age, we have to check our sources of information and try not to believe everything we see online. I don't know who posted that forecast, but it's probably the same people that try and convince us some celebrity has died or that the planet Mars is going to be brighter and closer to Earth than the moon. I don't know what the winter will be like yet, but we should have a better idea by early November. So please be patient as we continue to study the evolving fall weather pattern and then we will make a forecast at what could be coming this way for the winter. Have a good one.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Clouds today - waiting on Odile

View from KSAL tower in Salina at 7:30 this morning
Salina is about the only location with some sunshine this morning, but if you look on the horizon, you can see the low clouds that may overspread the rest of northern Kansas by late morning. It may look like rain at times today, but leave the umbrella behind because it's going to be a dry and comfortable fall-like day.

Forecast track for Odile into Thursday and Friday
Odile came on shore yesterday with winds around 110 mph, but it continues to weaken. The outer cloud bands have already reached Texas and Oklahoma as you can see from the satellite picture. We still think leftover moisture from the tropical system will reach Kansas Friday night into Saturday. The bulls-eye of heavier rainfall is targeting southern Kansas, so let's see if that shifts in the coming days on the computer models. Some places will likely get over an inch of rain Friday night into Saturday. Much of southern Kansas has been missed by recent rains, so it wouldn't be a bad thing if that's where the heaviest fell.

Several of you have asked about football weather for KSU Thursday night. It's going to be warm and a bit breezy, but no need to worry about rain interfering with tailgate activities. This should be a good one to watch. Kickoff temperature should be 84 and by the end of the game, readings will fall back into the upper 70s.

Less than one week to go until fall is officially here. It begins Sep. 22 at 9:29 p.m. Have a great day.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Could Hurricane Odile impact Kansas

Hope everyone had a nice weekend. Fall weather was definitely in the air, but this week does warm up some and should feel more like September (instead of November weather like we had on Friday)

A cold front today will settle south of Kansas heading into the evening/overnight hours. The chance for storms is very slight, and I think you'll have to be south of Wichita and along the Kansas/Oklahoma state line to even see any rain at all. Temperatures will be cooling down into the 40s and 50s for tonight.

The weather pattern this week looks very different across the central Plains. The winds in the upper atmosphere are coming from the northwest, and just the slightest ripple in the atmosphere can set off storms. So forecasting rain in this type of setup is difficult, but some of you could see a few storms Tuesday night and Wednesday night. I wouldn't expect it to be all that heavy OR widespread.

Hurricane Odile is working it's way toward Baja California and will continue moving northeast in the coming days. It's a very strong category 2 hurricane (as of Monday morning), but remember with tropical systems, once they start interacting with land and you remove the warm, ocean water, they begin to weaken. What is interesting here is that more heavy, flooding rainfall is likely in the Southwest across Arizona and New Mexico during the middle of the week, and eventually, Odile's moisture could reach Kansas by Friday or Saturday. That will be something to keep a watch on this week. If the moisture does reach our area, we could see some pockets of heavy rainfall. Good news for some!

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