Hard Freeze and a Tropical System

Good Saturday bloggers,

Well, as forecast, we had our first hard freeze of the  2017-2018 winter season as lows dropped to the mid and upper 20s.  Lows were quite low from central Kansas to the Dakotas with lows 5° to 15°. Last year it took until the 12th of November, so this year was right on schedule. The last freeze was March 16th, 225 days ago, which makes it the 12th longest time in between freezes in KC.


Here are lows around the area.  Central and eastern Missouri avoided a hard freeze as clouds lingered longer. Clouds act like a blanket.  The low in Hiawatha, KS was 21°!


The hard freeze covered most of the Hard Red Winter Wheat areas, so it is time for the wheat to head into dormancy until next spring.  Lows from northwest Oklahoma to central and western Kansas to the Dakotas were quite cold as a surface high pressure kept conditions clear and calm, perfect for radiational cooling.  The low in Aberdeen, SD was 5°!


What is next? Let’s go through the next few days and take a look at the important Halloween forecast.  Also, we will look at the tropics as hurricane season does not end for another month and a system is evolving.

SATURDAY: It will be mostly sunny with highs in the 40s along with a west to northwest wind at 5-15 mph.


SUNDAY MORNING: The low tonight will likely be reached around midnight as winds switch to the southwest and clouds come in from the northwest.  So, after midnight temperatures will hold steady or rise a few degrees.  A light freeze is likely.


SUNDAY AFTERNOON: The winds will be from the southwest at 10-20 mph and this will bring in warmer air.  Highs in Topeka will come close to 70°, KC will rise to around 60° with 50s to the east.  There will be periods of mostly high clouds as well.


MONDAY MORNING: A cold front will sweep through Sunday night, but lows will be in the 40s as clouds will be thick and the cold air will be lagging the front a bit. A sprinkle is not out of the question.


MONDAY AFTERNOON: After lows in the 40s it will struggle to 50 as cold air moves in all day.  We may see some sun by later in the afternoon as the bands of clouds shifts south.


HALLOWEEN: The day will start cold with lows in the 20s and 30s. Then, a disturbance will head into the Plains and increase the clouds during the day.  This disturbance will likely generate rain showers Tuesday night into Wednesday. So, there is a slight rain chance for trick or treating, but the system may stay south and east or be 12 hours slower, meaning dry and creepy cool Tuesday evening.  We will need to update this as we get closer.



TROPICAL UPDATE: Hurricane season runs until November 30th, so seeing a tropical system at the end of October is entirely possible.  Well, we have one forming, and it may become Philippe.


The satellite picture Saturday morning shows the 18th system of the season getting it’s act together southwest of Cuba.  This should not become more than a tropical storm as it heads northeast.  The moisture from the system and the trough that brought snow to Minnesota will combine to bring a wet and windy storm to New England Sunday and Monday.


Here is the latest forecast track of the system.  Tonight around midnight it will be near Key West and Miami bringing rain and 30-50 mph wind gusts.  It has the chance to be a minimal tropical storm.


Have a great weekend.

Jeff Penner

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