Weather Blog: A Shift in the Weather Pattern

Posted at 12:40 PM, Jul 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-22 13:40:48-04

Good Wednesday bloggers,

The pattern that has brought our region widespread rain and thunderstorms is taking a 5 day break. There have been many yards and farms that have received enough or even too much rain. Officially, at KCI, where KC weather records are kept there has been nearly 7.50" of rain which is about 4.25" above average. We may add to the totals next week. More on that below.

Now, conversely, there are yards and farms that did not get enough rain. Here is a look at the 30 day percent average rainfall. You can see there are locations from Garnett, KS to Knob Noster, MO through Olathe and Overland Park to Lee's Summit that still could use some rain with 60-85% average rainfall the last 30 days. Looks at the corridor from Downtown KC to Hiawatha, KS. Rainfall is mostly over 200% of average!

Let's go through this shift in the weather pattern.


We will see a warm front drift north and this will bring a chance of isolated, mostly afternoon and evening thunderstorms as the flow aloft becomes quite light. Highs each day will be 87-90 with lows 70-75. The wind will be light until Friday when a south wind at 10-20 mph occurs.

The weather pattern is shifting as we take a look at the upper level flow. During the summer you can get a heat wave when an upper level high sits over you for several days. These highs cause sinking air, which heats up and it suppresses thunderstorm development. The high is represented by the blue "H" on the upper level flow video below.

The last several days it has been suppressed way to the south. The next 5 days it will head west and then north so that it will be nearly overhead this weekend. But, just as we are about to have a heat wave, the upper level high shifts away allowing for a cold front to arrive early next week. This will increase the thunderstorm chances and decrease the temperatures.

BTW, a heat wave is defined as three straight days with highs 95 or higher. We have yet to reach 95 one time this season. That is unusual.
As we discussed above, the pattern that has brought widespread rain and thunderstorms is taking a break through Sunday.

This is perfect timing to see the comet the next several evenings.

Here is some information from Earth Sky. "Comet NEOWISE will be closest to Earth on July 22-23, 2020. It will pass at some 64 million miles (103 million km) from our planet. The good news is that – if the comet continues looking great – the view during the night of closest approach should be nice for many of us at temperate latitudes in the Northern Hemisphere. Although binoculars (you can see it with the naked eye in good viewing conditions) are required for the celestial visitor, it will be visible at the same time we see a beautiful crescent (not too bright) moon."

The video below explains where to look. One thing not on the graphic, is that being away from city lights is much better.

Have a great rest of your week and stay healthy.