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The Next Storm Is Producing Out West

Good morning bloggers,

Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 7.19.01 AMIt is snowing in Las Vegas, NV this morning and an inch is possible. This is the second time it has snowed in Las Vegas in the last week.  The latest storm is dropping south down the west coast and intensifying. It will be forming into an upper level low over Arizona by Friday,  and then begin tracking east before ejecting out into the plains as it gets kicked out by the next system heading into the Pacific northwest.  Seattle has had its snowiest February in this wild weather pattern, and Kansas City has now had 37 days with at least a trace of snow since our first one on October 14th when 0.2″ fell at KCI Airport. That was the earliest snowfall accumulation ever recorded in Kansas City since records began in the 1880s.  This weather pattern has suddenly been producing with storm after storm after storm.  This is what we forecast would happen months ago as we experienced the first LRC cycle in October and November. This is a graphic I showed on the air in early December, the Dominant Storm Track:

Winter Forecast Pattern December 1

And, here is the pattern developing now, as it lines up with the vision we had for this years pattern three months ago:

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The ridge off the west coast extending into Alaska has ben developing over and over again allowing for the Arctic air generation. When you have anticyclonic flow that amplifies over Alaska, it creates the conditions for high pressure to build at the surface. This causes the sky to clear and the winds to go light, which in turn allows for radiational cooling and the build up of very cold Arctic air. This took through December to finally build up.  In December there was a lack of this cold air, even though there were wet storm systems.  In January and February, this Arctic air blasted south, and there has been enough cold air leftover, even when the Arctic air has retreated north, to provide the conditions for these recent snow storms.  Here is what I wrote in November when we issued our winter forecast:

Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 7.01.02 AM

In our Winter Forecast Video, I discussed how up to 37″ of snow would fall in the KC viewing area this winter. Right now, KCI Airport is officially sitting at 26.3″ for the season. If it stopped snowing right now I would be exactly right on that specific forecast.  We know that we aren’t even close to being done yet, however. How high will this total go? This is a good question.  Maybe we should play another game of predicting the final snowfall total for the season? What do you think?  Malarcky won the title of “Best Weather Forecaster Of The Week” with a great prediction of 7.3″ of snow for these last three events, as we ended up with 7.2″ from the three storm systems.  If we play another game, we may wait until next week to begin.  Let’s first see what will happen with this next storm system.

As you can see above, the Canadian Model is showing the upper level low circled over the Texas Panhandle and western Oklahoma. The GFS and FV3 GFS models are the farthest north with the track of this next storm, and most of the other models track it more like this Canadian model, or just south of KC. If it does track south of KC, then the snow would be pulled into the KC metro area.  Rain and thunderstorms are possible ahead of this system. There are still just too many questions to be answered, and I will hold off on the deep analysis of this storm until we get through a couple more data sets, which will begin arriving in the next few hours. These will be discussed in the comments section of the Weather2020 blog.

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Just look at the cyclone forming on the new NAM this morning.  We will discuss in the comments today!

Thank you for sharing in this weather experience, and have a great day!

Gary

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