Sunday, March 30, 2008

March Out Like a Lion

Where did the month of March go? The month will end like a lion as we watch severe weather move across the eastern part of Kansas. The weather has been rather cloudy lately, and if you are waiting for sunshine, it will be here on Tuesday (for everyone)

The school talk in Pratt was a big success. I have at least one 5th grader who is pretty serious about being a meteorologist, which reminds me of the days when I was growing up as a weather junkie. I know there were some good pictures taken Thursday afternoon, and I hope to have them very soon. The kindergarten kids provided some good entertainment by showing me all of the weather books that they have been reading lately. Remember the TV show that Bill Cosby hosted many years ago "Kids Say the Darndest Things"? Well, I was reminded of that Thursday during my visit to Sacred Heart Elementary.

KU is on a roll in the NCAA tournament. Lawrence will be buzzing the next several days as the students celebrate the big win and begin preparing for Saturday. The Jayhawks advanced to the Final Four when I was going to school there (many moons ago) and I clearly remember how crazy Massachusetts street was the night they advanced. Now we will wait and see who the better team is... North Carolina or the Jayhawks. I guess we have the rest of the week to come up with a prediciton. Have a great week.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Spring Flood Outlook

NOAA has released its outlook for flooding this spring across the United States and it may not surprise you, but the eastern half of Kansas actually has an above average risk to see flooding. There are several factors that contribute to this outlook, one of which includes melting snow pack in the mountainous regions in Colorado. There has been above average snowfall in Colorado this winter, and as it starts to melt, the rivers will be carrying more water. Of course, at this time of the year, with springtime thunderstorms, we tend to get some heavy rainfall which will only contribute to the higher likelihood of flooding.

The weather pattern remains very quiet tonight and will not change much in the next few days. There will be a stronger system coming in this weekend, which may provide a better chance for rainfall Sunday or Sunday night. The temperatures will cool off Friday, but it should warm back up for the weekend. I'm headed to Pratt on Thursday to talk with school kids. I know we will have some pictures to post later in the week. Millie and I will be off for an extra day this weekend, so look for Ayna Saturday night.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Happy Easter

Basketball rolls on and it's forcing our newscasts to start late. I love watching the games, but we hate when our newscasts start so late at night. The Big 12 has been well represented in the tournament this year, but some of the teams are dropping out faster than we would like. If you filled out a bracket ahead of time, how does it look now that the second round is almost over?

The flooding has been significant off to the east of Kansas. The Meramec River has crested at record levels which has had several residents on edge and understandably so. Fenton, Missouri was one of the hard hit areas, and the long range forecast has more rain for areas that really need 3 or 4 weeks of dry weather.
The weather pattern this week will be one to watch. Temperatures will be very warm and it will be windy for at least 3 of the next 5 days. Storm chances will be increasing by Wednesday and there will be a chance for at least a few strong storms during the next 7 days. Stay tuned!
Have a Happy Easter everyone!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

March Madness

Well, you either love it or hate it because it messes up your evening TV programs. The NCAA tournament starts Thursday and if you are like me, you are trying to figure out which one of the top teams will fall first (I hope it's not the Jayhawks). It is nice to see the Big 12 so well represented in the tournament this year. Enjoy the games.

I have a couple of friends send me this picture from the downtown Atlanta area when the storms came rolling through. It is very hard, even as a meteorologist, to correctly identify all of the features that we are seeing in the picture. At first glance, it looks like a shelf cloud moving through. Shelf clouds stretch for several miles across the horizon and are usually associated with strong winds. In the background, the lightning is illuminating torrential rainfall and probably some hail. I don't know for sure where the tornado is located in all of this, but if indeed that is a shelf cloud stretching across the horizon, tornadoes can sometimes form on the leading edge. It is very possible that the tornado that hit Atlanta is not even in this picture. All of this is proof that storm identification can be very difficult, even for trained professionals. Nighttime spotting is even harder, which is why we don't normally recommend it unless spotters have some access to radar in the field.
Despite the tornado and some of the damage that was left behind, I'm sure they are grateful for the rain. Remember, this is an area that has been plagued with drought for quite some time now.
Alright, good luck to your NCAA teams!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Crazy Weather Pattern

Another round of severe weather takes its toll on a big metro area. Atlanta, GA had a bout with severe weather Friday night and there were two fatalities in Georgia. Someone in our newsroom said they didn't see any pictures of the actual tornadoes from that area and I think it's largely due to the fact they just don't have the storm chaser population like we have here in the central US. The storms interrupted the Arizona/Mississippi State game which was in overtime. They should've stopped the game sooner and they were lucky the tornado wasn't stronger, or the death could've been much worse.

We have two powerful storms that could affect our weather this week. The first will arrive on St. Patrick's Day with showers and storms. Another system will be coming in next weekend for Easter. Sunrise on Easter is set for 7:29 a.m. for those that might be going to sunrise services.

I have a severe weather presentation coming up Monday evening for the Sunnydale 4-H Club. I hope to have some pictures for the blog tomorrow evening. Have a great week and Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Enjoying the Weather

Mother Nature is treating us to some great weather here lately. I wish we could keep it going for another 3 or 4 weeks, but there are bound to be some changes before then. A powerful storm is coming in on Monday, so get ready for a good deal of wind.

What did you think of the weather special Tuesday night? There was a great deal of work involved, so we hope you liked it. I set my VCR to record the show, and wouldn't you know, I ended up recording the wrong channel. It is possible the show will air again, but I don't know what time or date. If I hear something, I'll let you know.

Someone asked about Wade, my nephew, and how he is doing. Well, he has glasses for right now because he is having trouble seeing distant objects. The glasses make for a cute picture, so I decided to share that with you today. You'll see our new meteorologist on the air the next few days. We think you'll be impressed!

I'll be blogging again this weekend. Enjoy the warm weather.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Spring Is Here

If you are reading the blog, then you should know that spring weather is here. The weather pattern the next 8-10 days will allow us to see more 50s, 60s, and 70s. The warmer 70s will stay in western Kansas for the most part. We are evening going to have a chance for thunderstorms on Wednesday in the eastern part of the state. It will most likely not be severe, so we are thankful for that.

The upcoming week is Kansas Severe Weather Awareness Week. The statewide tornado drill will take place on Tuesday and if I remember right, it's at 1:30 p.m. Then at 6:30 that night, we will have our annual "Eye on the Storm" weather special. It should be pretty informative and we hope you like it. Something else to look for this week... our newest addition to the Storm Team will make her debut. Ayna Sehgal will be on the air next week making her first appearance on FOX as early as Wednesday night. We are excited to be up to full strength going into the severe weather season.

This radar image is from 9:30 Saturday night. Some places in northern New York have had over 15 inches of snow, while other areas have some flooding rainfall. Buffalo, NY has had 90.4 inches of snow so far this season. It makes our 22.1 inches of snow seem like nothing here in Wichita.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Finishing Touches

I fell behind in my blogging this week. The weather special has us VERY busy, but I know it will definitely pay off. I've had a sneak peek at the show and it looks GOOD. Kevin Hager is the producer for the show and he always does an outstanding job with the special effects. This year our show will focus on Greensburg, but there are many different angles that each member of the Storm Team will cover. It will run Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m.

We had our first bout with severe weather on Sunday. In case you missed our Sunday night late show, we had our first tornado touchdown of the year in Kansas. Our contest that we started on the blog is not over though, because there was no official tornado warning in effect. The radar showed mostly wind, which is most likely why we didn't have a tornado warning in effect. Storm spotters would've played a crucial role in this warning process, which is why they are so important. Radar can only show us so much, and in this case, it didn't look like the storm would produce a tornado. Fortunately, no one was hurt, the damage was very minimal, and the tornado was not on the ground very long.
A long day is coming to an end. I'll be back on the air Saturday evening. Have a good rest of the week!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

In Like a Tame Lion

Some would say March came in like a lion because of the wind that we had Saturday afternoon. Others might say it was like a lamb because of the sunshine. Either way, I have a serious case of spring fever, so even if we had just one more cold day left this winter, it would be one too many.

Millie and I went for a stroll Thursday afternoon. We have been long overdue for some good weather, but anyone that has lived here for awhile knows that March can be pretty ugly with wintry weather.
My trip to Greensburg was a very humbling experience. There has been a great deal of progress made, but there is still so much left to do. You'll see the segment coming up on March 11 at 6:30.

We are going to get some rain Sunday and eventually, some snow into Monday morning. The graphic posted on here is a rainfall prediction through Tuesday morning showing eastern Kansas could see up to an inch of rain. Snowfall amounts could be around 1-3 inches in southwest Kansas and we could see an inch here in the Wichita area by Monday morning. We will have an update Sunday evening. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

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