Monday, May 5, 2014

Record heat - storm chances

Happy Monday and Cinco de Mayo! Why shouldn't Kansas be as hot as Mexico, right? Yesterday was just crazy seeing the temperatures go past the 100 degree mark. The official hot spot was Medicine Lodge with 103, and 102 in Wichita was a record high and the earliest for the city to ever hit the century mark. You find mixed feelings about hot weather vs. cold. The scary thing for all of us should be the fact that we've had so little rain and with hot weather kicking in so soon, this is just going to dry things out that much faster. It's much easier for the atmosphere to heat up when the ground and air are both dry as a bone. Our relative humidity Sunday afternoon was 5-10%. The National Weather Service from Dodge City shared this picture on Twitter Sunday evening from northwest Oklahoma. We are essentially reliving the dust bowl in some areas of the west, especially with the recent dust storms and 60 mph winds.

We will watch a front meander around Kansas today. North of the front, highs will be in the 80s, but south of it, you'll find more hot, summertime temperatures (95-100) We expect this front to keep most of Kansas from seeing record warmth today (Monday). We will watch for more record highs Tuesday though. The red check marks indicate a forecast tie or break. It's going to be hot tomorrow and I do expect some 100s on our maps before the end of the day.
7 a.m. temperatures and front position
A dry line will setup for south central Kansas down into Oklahoma for Wednesday. This is our first potential for storms this week (and it's not a good chance at all). Biggest problem for us will be warm temperatures aloft (generally at 7-10,000 feet). Warm air at that level essentially prevents storms from developing, so we will watch and see if something develops. IF it does, the storm will have a chance of producing some hail.
Wednesday evening storm chance. Green dashed line is the dry line at 5 p.m.
Next chance for rain (after Wednesday) will arrive Thursday with our cold front. The focus for storms will be over the eastern 1/2 of Kansas. It's early to speculate on how much rain we may get, but the activity will be very spotty to start, and I'm expecting the higher amounts of moisture to once again go east of us. But we will be grateful for anything at this point. Have a great week. I'll be back tomorrow.

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