Watching for more rain tonight

2:35p Update
A respectable line of storms has formed now in Western Missouri. Here again, the model runs at 9p did not handle this at all. Matter of fact, the RPM Powercast I showed at 6p on air was actually pretty close to what’s going on now. That was one that I was unsure of because it seemed to be a bit aggressive, considering what was going on at the time.
Radar1 copy
This line will continue to slowly drift to the East. The storms on the North end have produce some hail. Last report was of hail near ping pong ball size around the Polo area. That will continue to be the threat tonight: hail. For many others in Missouri, it will be some noisy thunder.

2:05a Update
The NWS has gone ahead with a severe T-storm Warning until 2:30a for Caldwell & Ray counties. The threat would be for some hail near quarter size. This is the storm in question:

This storm is tracking to the East right now, so heads up for those near Polo, Kingston, Braymer as this is headed your way.

1:45a Update
I have been watching the radar for the last half hour or so. There seems to be a few storms organizing just a bit to the East and South of KC. If one or two of these continues to strengthen, hail near quarter size would be possible. While these storms won’t impact most of KC, other areas near I-35 could see more thunder/lightning and small hail. I will continue to monitor.

9:45p Update
This may be it, folks. The cap in the atmosphere appears to have held in place to our Northwest. Here’s how the radar looks now…
All of this will slowly drift to the South & Southeast. No severe weather expected at all, but the thunder will continue to sound impressive.

Looking into Nebraska, you can there is not a cloud in the sky. No new development there, which means our chances to see something drift in overnight have greatly diminished. The “cap” wins this round.


The models poorly handled all of this today; the downside to leaning on them so much. But, computer technology is the highest it’s ever been for weather, so we do put a lot of confidence in them. And while the models are usually never “dead on”, they tend to give us a good enough idea. And the more you utilize various models, you begin to understand each one more and what kind of “bias” it has. Some will develop things too far North, others will favor convection more often. And then there are days where the models are clueless. Each time, however, it’s a learning lesson. This is why I caution those who look at ONE model and extrapolate a forecast from it. Plus it takes an understand of the models and all the layers to that model. Moreover, predicting the future is never easy!

That all said, we are still looking pretty warm (and humid) for Sunday. Find some A/C or a pool if you can!

8:10p Update
Some isolated t-storms over the Metro area right now. Not severe but appear to be gaining a little bit of strength. I will continue to track them.

7:45p Update

So far, the radar is VERY quiet. To be honest, I expected to be seeing something on the radar now along the KS/NE line. But it’s quiet.

Despite this, the latest versions of the short-term forecast models are still indicating storms will blossom up. What is the hold up? I just checked the atmospheric sounding out of Topeka. This Skew-T chart speaks volumes:

The area I have circled is the cap we have in place. It would take a lot to explain all the things going on in this chart, but the basics here is that the temperature aloft is still pretty warm. Due to that, vertical development of air/clouds is halted.
Now that said, just above that cap we have tremendous energy available.
That spread in the two colored lines (red being temperature and blue being temperature of a parcel of air lifted from the surface of the Earth) indicated the amount of energy in the atmosphere. Commonly this is called CAPE. In this instance, we have over 3,000 joules per kilogram (J/kg)of CAPE. I know, I know… those last few sentences make about as much sense as: kweivna dsfweow ahfnvmpqb ndaubwbslqa. If you REALLY have the time and want to learn more about Skew-T charts (they are my guilty pleasure when it comes to weather), there is a great blog article here: http://wx4cast.blogspot.com/2011/10/how-to-read-skew-t-log-p.html

For now, I will continue to watch the radar. As the sun begins to go down, the cap usually starts to weaken. This could be the window of opportunity for storms to fire up. I know some may still have fireworks plans for tonight; personal displays or maybe a family gathering. We’ll continue to keep you updated so you know what to expect!

As expected, we had a round of rain and thunder storms move through portions of Northern Missouri this morning. That activity generally stayed North of I-70 and put down some decent rain amounts in a few area. Like I had mentioned Friday morning during our newscasts, I was concerned with seeing some locally heavy rainfall. In the last 24 hours, here are the reports via the NWS:
1 PM

The rain has pretty much come to an end, but we’re not done yet for today…
You can see from the visible satellite picture above that most of Nebraska and Kansas are seeing sunshine. This is really heating up the atmosphere. Surface temperatures at 3p were already cooking.

2 PM

Based off of this and the forecast information I have seen, I will be watching the Lincoln to Omaha area for storms to redevelop later this evening, after about 5:30p. If/when those storms get going, they should start to push to the South and Southeast. I believe there is a window for Kansas City to experience rain and thunderstorms later on tonight after about 9p.

The RPM model (designed for convection) is picking up on this, but I feel like it may be over-doing it a bit. This is what it is saying the radar will look like at 2:30a:
Again, I believe this might be a little aggressive, but I do believe there is a good chance we’ll see rain and storms in far Eastern Kansas. This would push to the South/Southeast through the night and be just to the South of our coverage area by early Sunday morning. While I am not expecting severe weather, given the massive amount of heat, I would not be surprised to see some strong outflow winds from the storms as they collapse.

Turning the focus Sunday: Prep to sweat. It appears summer is about to make a return in full-force.
3 PM

We should stay in the 90s for Monday as well until another cold front drops in to knock us back into the 80s. But I don’t think we’ll have to wait long before the 90s return again.

I am working on all the forecast stuff as we speak and will have the latest during our 5, 6, & 10p newscasts tonight on 41 Action News. Should there be a need to update this blog more (due to radar, fresh information, etc), you know I will do so.

Hope you’re enjoying the holiday weekend.

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21 comments to Watching for more rain tonight

  • LuvsSummer

    Thanks for the update JD. I’m ready for the 90s, hot & sunny!

  • robyn corzine

    JD great blog as always! It sure would be a treat for us bloggers if you would do the blog on a full time basis! You give great insight and great explanations without all the BS! Thanks again for taking the time to write the blog!

  • Drought Miser

    AAhhhh it looks like The Dog Days of Summer have crept in on us oh well had to happen sooner or later!!

  • sedsinkc

    Some scattered storms are popping in NE Kansas already…IF those maintain or increase, they could get close to KC before 9 p.m. Tomorrow looks like a rude return to full on summer after the nice week we just had.

  • sedsinkc

    I hope we get some generous rains around here soon or that “D” word is going to rear its ugly head again. Don’t look now, but the 2014 rainfall deficit is increasing again, up by almost 2 inches at KCI since June 9. I’ve only had about one inch of rain at my house since June 15. The KC area received some good general rains in the first two weeks of June. Unfortunately, that period coincides with the wettest time of year on average in Kansas City, so the existing rainfall deficits never went away completely around KC, and now they’re growing again. We missed a golden opportunity for rain this morning, and whatever we get tonight will almost certainly be much less than what we would have received this morning had the rain north of KC fallen in KC instead.

    • Dobber

      No doubt…. 2-4 inches in st joe, wow!

      • sedsinkc

        Wasn’t talking about St. Joe, imbecile. Read what I wrote carefully, because you obviously didn’t.

        • sedsinkc

          Sorry, uncalled-for. Wish there was a way the writer could delete their post after posting. If Monday night’s rain materializes for KC it should help a lot. IF it materializes. A flash flood watch doesn’t guarantee heavy rain, and KC is on the edge of it. I think it’s mostly meant for N MO where they’ve had way more rain lately than here and points south. Except for that little pocket in Cass and Bates counties early Sunday morning that had 4 to 5 inches of rain.

  • weathergeek

    I agree with the drought statement. According to the drought monitor that JD posted a few days back some areas were already in a drought and KC was still abnormally dry. It’s very true that some areas around the city have had decent rainfall amounts while other areas have been left wanting more. I have had my irrigation system on a few times mainly in late April and May. The last system that came through was moving so fast rainfall amounts were on the low end. All of the states to the north are in good shape while we sit on the fence of being to dry and dare I say we are leaning on the wrong side of the fence.

  • luvsno

    JD did you forget that today is July 5 ? On the 6 pm you said something about the rain coming tonight and it might dampen some fireworks :)
    (my bad, if there are fireworks displays scheduled for tonight.)

    Anyway, i would like to see some rain tonight….bring it on.

  • Drought Miser

    Drought Miser reporting live from Merriam Ks, thunderstorms are developing right overhead lightning is picking up in intensity I think the cap is breaking!!

  • sedsinkc

    0.09″ so far in KC North. Drove to Parkville around 8 p.m. and they had a very nice soaking there.

  • luvsno

    Good morning everyone !
    Sure wish we could have gotten some of the rain here in Jo Co KS.
    JD thank you for all of the blog updates !! Love it

  • Dobber

    Hume, sure looks like Vernon county got a lot of rain last night. Any reports on the ole farm?

  • Hume-Dude

    I am happy to report a full 1.5″ in the gauge. Started at 5:30ish……got some nice downpours hoping they put some water in my new ponds. Butler got absolutely slammed, I’m thinking 3″+ had a big cell training over the eastern half of bates county for about two or three hours solid. NWS showing some 4″ amounts, crazy!!!

  • j-ox

    How tall is that corn, Hume?
    W/o getting out to measure it around here, it appears to be Shaq+ height!

    • Hume-Dude

      I was checking a trail camera yesterday down in some bottoms , and some of the corn is like 8-10′ I swear. Not that it matters the price of corn has totally tanked, lol. The earliest beans are doing great , I have seen some waist high on my neighbors. Our beans are closing in on knee night, and this 1.5″ will probably take them to the next level. Looking like a little more Monday night, bring it on!!!

  • goodlifegardens

    Garden City/Creighton—3.5″ Came down fast.

  • Drought Miser

    I thought these storms were to remain below Severe limits? Oh well its the atmosphere and it does what it wants.
    Meanwhile here in Merriam Ks just a light show to our East last night I can’t even report a single drop of rain from what some folks to my east and south are calling flooding rains wowowow. Not the drought dome again!!!

  • trinlivco

    Great rain here in Chillicothe about 3:00 A.M this morning. I had 1.90 here in town and 1.50 at the farm 10 miles south of town. All this rain is really welcomed. The more is better. Hope we get more Monday nite. Fall cant get here quick enough for me.