Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Dry weather continues

Yesterday was a fairly decent day with highs in the upper 40's to low 50's in the early afternoon. Winds began to increase out ahead of a Pacific cold front associated with an Alberta clipper system. The cold front pushed through and temperatures cooled into the low to mid 40's. This wasnt a stront front by any means.

There was also a weak arctic front behind the pacific front associated with the same clipper system. The pressure gradient between the two front was very tight, and the result was strong winds last night. The winds were blowing between 20-40 mph, and gusting over 50 mph at times. The warranted the NWS to issue a Wind Advisory for the area.

Winds of that strength will cause travel problems, and blow outdoor property around. I have a large trampoline that right now is leaning on its side against a swing set. The winds continued overnight after the arctic front pushed through. This was definitly no arctic blat by any means, but it still was cold this morning with lows in the upper teens to lower 20's.

The winds have also calmed quite a bit this morning due to the weak arctic high pressure settled in over the area. When you have high pressure, the air will sink because it is more dense, which prevents cloud development, and precipitation. Take a look at the diagram I drew below in case you are a picture learner:

Highs today will be in the upper 20's to mid 30's around the area. To give a general idea, I am going with a high of 33 degrees in Kansas City. What about tonight. Take a look at the surface map below:

The cold air is settled in now with light winds, but with clockwise rotation around high pressure, the winds switcj to the south in western Kansas. The high will continue to move to the east, and so will the southerly winds in Kansas. The winds across eastern Kansas and Missouri will begin to switch from the north to the south tonight, and increase in strength to 5 to 20 mph. Lows tomorrow morning will be in the low to mid 20's.
With the breezy south winds between 10 and 25 mph, the temperatures will warm into the low to mid 40's for your New Years Day. There will be a wind chill factor though, and it will likely feel 5 to 10 degrees colder.
The near to above 40 degree high temperatures and dry weather will remain through Saturday befre another storm system approaches. There is a slight chance of rain on Saturday, but right now only about a 20% chance.
There is a chance of snow sometime early next week.
Alex Pickman


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