FAIRWAY, KS (KCTV) - What do you call a Winter Storm Warning that happens when it’s still Summer? A Sum-minter storm warning? That’s what Denver, Colorado is dealing with this week.
Thankfully, we don’t have to worry about snow, but the same system that’s spreading snow across the Rockies is bringing us much cooler air this week and several chances for rain and a few thunderstorms. If all lines up perfectly, we might break a few records for coolest daytime high temperatures. But it all depends on where you live in Missouri and Kansas. Let me explain.
It’s About The Front:
Check out the surface map below. The dividing line between cool fall-like air and hot, humid summer air is easy to see. But here comes the challenging part when it comes to forecasting high temperatures over the next several days. The front has stalled and will wobble back and forth across our area over the next several days.
That means some of us will see highs again on Tuesday near 90 while at the same time some of us will feel cool fall like air in the 50s. Wild right? Not as spectacular as Denver. Monday afternoon it was in the 90s in Denver while it’s in the 50s at Sioux Falls. The cooler air is headed this way but how far south will the cooler air make it? It will certainly make it to Denver where a Winter Storm Warning goes into effect Tuesday. Here’s a statement from the National Weather Service office in Denver.
“Active weather day to say the least. Cameron Peak fire very active overnight and expect another rough day with gusty winds and very low relative humidity. Then strong front arrives this evening with a blast of 50 mph winds across the plains and some blowing dust. Rain/Snow develops-would expect mostly snow by Tuesday morning down into Denver. Biggest impacts for the lower elevations will be the potential for broken limbs and power outages. Roads should stay wet below 6,000 feet, but some slush above that even winter driving in higher mountains where temps will hover in the teens and lower 20s much of Tuesday.”
Front Brings Thunderstorm Chances:
Back here in Kansas City we are watching an area over northern Missouri later tonight for the potential for thunderstorms. The thunderstorms will form in a region near the stalled front and where some strong winds develop at about 5,000 feet off the surface. One or two of these thunderstorms could contain some large hail. So the Storm Prediction Center has placed this area in a marginal risk outlook.
The thunderstorms will shove the stalled boundary farther south, but once again it will stall. The question is where? When it comes to shallow cold air masses such as the one moving toward us this week, I like the North American Model. All the models agree that we will see off and on rain showers most of this week but the NAM is trending cooler than the others and I think it handles Tuesday’s temperature trend the best.
It’s possible that Tuesday afternoon features a 40-degree temperature spread across our area. Look at the above map. 50-degrees in Maryville and nearly 90 at Sedalia. This tight temperature gradient should lead to thunderstorms Tuesday afternoon along the reinvigorated cold front. You can see what appears to be rather robust thunderstorms forming along the bottom of the above graphic. These thunderstorms will form in an area of higher instability and could include some damaging wind gusts. The cold front should push into southern Missouri Wednesday putting our whole area in the cooler air.
Wednesday’s high temperature could get stuck in the 50s. This would set a new record for the coolest high temperature for September 9th. The current record is 66-degrees and that record was set more than 100 years ago in 1907.
Rain Continues Through Friday:
As the chilly air filters in from the northwest, a warm flow aloft around a cut-off storm over the inter-mountain west will transport moisture into our area. Wednesday morning should start off rainy. We might dry out Wednesday afternoon but the stalled upper level storm over the Rockies will continue to send waves of energy through the central plains and this pattern could continue into Saturday morning. Below is how the winds aloft are forecast to set up Thursday afternoon.
The main branch of the jet stream or upper level flow will be over the U.S./Canadian border. So the upper low will slowly migrate eastward across the northern plains. This forecast path will keep somewhat milder than originally, but the slower path of the storm also means we see rain through the end of the week.
We aren’t talking about all day rains, but we are expecting off and on rain showers that could impact the Chiefs season opener with the Texans. Total rainfall amounts, in some instances, could approach three inches of rain. Once the storm moves into the Great Lakes, clearer skies will take over the for weekend and the high temperatures will rebound back into the 70s, so it should be a nice weekend here in KC.