Good morning 41 Action News Weather Bloggers,
For the second straight night there was a band of showers and thunderstorms. Last night’s activity extended from just south of Lawrence to Paola, KS crossing the state line into Bates county. This was farther south than Sunday night’s activity and only in a very isolated area early this morning. We expect the late night and early morning thunderstorm activity to increase a bit the next two nights. This forecasting of where the rain will fall and how much is quite a challenge. I think it will shift back to the north a bit with Thursday morning having the best chance of some rain.
We continue to be in the circulation around a rather large anticyclone, the heat wave creating machine. It was 111° in Wichita, KS and Little Rock, AR yesterday. That is extreme heat, but the hottest air of the summer is likely in August. We have been forecasting the strongest heat wave of the summer for next month for weeks now and I don’t see how it doesn’t happen. Between now and when the heat wave expands back to the north over our region we can expect a few chances for rain. Hopefully these chances of thunderstorms produce a bit more wide spread activity than we have seen lately.
The anticyclone is centered over west Texas near the New Mexico border today. We are in the “rim of fire” around this heat wave creating machine. Sometimes it gets quite wet in a zone around these systems, but this year it has been a struggle. There are a lot of clouds and small areas of rain and thunderstorms rotating around the anticyclone today, while at the same time it is helping generate some tremendous heat just to our southwest. One disturbance will move across later tonight, with a stronger one, now over Arizona, moving across us our local region on Thursday. These will provide a chance of thunderstorms later tonight and again on Thursday morning. By Friday night and Saturday a stronger storm system will be tracking across the northern plains, as you can see to the right (click on either of these maps for a larger view). This system will force the anticyclone to weaken and shift south and it will also help drive a weak cold front through our area Saturday afternoon and evening. The extreme heat over southern Kansas may be forced out over our area on Saturday ahead of the front and, depending on the timing of the front, the temperatures could jump to as high or higher than they have been so far this summer. There will also be a chance of thunderstorms near this frontal zone. After this front moves through is when my concerns grow for the high likelihood of the strongest anticyclone of the summer with a resulting major heat wave expanding over a large part of the United States in August. Take a look at this next map:
This forecast map, above, shows a huge anticyclone centered over Colorado on August 14th. Our first heat wave developed in late June and this would be right on schedule according to the LRC. If this forms and moves east out over the plains states, then we will, unfortunately, have to deal with potentially the strongest and hottest heat wave of the entire summer as the kids are getting ready to go back to school. I hope this doesn’t materialize but I have high confidence that it will. So, the forecast for August includes a major heat wave with limited chances for rain. The best chances will likely come during the next week to ten days and then later in the month.
Have a great day and thank you for spending a few minutes reading the Action Weather Blog. Let us know if you have any questions or comments.