Thursday, July 9, 2009

Thunderstorms tonight?

Well it was a very interesting day today as an MCS (Mesoscale Convective System) developed in the wee hours of the morning over northern Nebraska and Iowa and was pressing south and eastward toward us. The as it entered Missouri, it began to weaken even given the favorable conditions, but there were some thunderstorms on the western end of the system and they created an outflow boundary that pushed to Kansas City.

It was pretty cool to see temperatures behind the outflow boundary to be in the 70's and 80's and temperatures just on the other side in the 90's. Areas in North Central Missouri such as Chillicothe, Brookfield, and Kirksville didnt even make it out of the 70's! This is the 12th day in a row across this area that has not had a 90+ degree day. That is nothing to complain about having the first 10 days of JULY without 90 degree weather.

Areas around Kansas City had their streak of 11 days below 90 degrees broken today as the highs topped out in the low 90's. Now that isnt really hot for this time of year as the averages for the entire area range between 88 and 90 degrees. This is not the case to the south and west of us, where a significant heat wave is sizzleing Texas, and Oklahoma.

Take a look at the 500 mb flow forecast for Saturday:

This is a pretty strong upper high with heights of nearly 6,000 feet above sea level and as mentioned above is creating a significant heat wave over Texas and Oklahoma where up to 110+ heat is likely.

We are on the edge of this upper level high, and as with all Summertime upper level highs, disturbences rotate around the high, and we are in postion for them to roll right through us. This is what has been happening the past few days, the latest one being this morning with an MCS that made it into North Central Missouri before diminishing.

Our next chance of rain and thunderstorms will be late tonight between 1:00 and 5:00 AM. Thunderstorms are expected to develop in southeastern Nebraska and northen Kansas, and increase in coverage as time passes. With abundant moisture available, the storms will be capable of producing rainfall rates of 1-2 inches per hour. These storms may also be capable of producing large hail and damaging winds. As a result the SPC has the much of the area under a slight risk of severe weather tonight.

I will have an update if anything develops.
Alex Pickman


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