Weather Blog | Drought improving but heat dome, hurricane Hilary won't help

Current Drought Monitor.PNG
Posted at 12:00 PM, Aug 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-17 13:00:30-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Good day Weather Blog readers!

Today's weather blog won't discuss the unseasonably cool weather Thursday and Friday, especially Friday morning, but I encourage you to take advantage of the not so hot weather before it arrives this weekend!

With that in mind the recent rainfall will help us out a little bit compared to if we didn't just have soggy weather last weekend. The latest drought monitor shows a 19% decrease in areas in Missouri considered in abnormally dry conditions or worse; Kansas only saw a 3% decrease.

Current Drought Monitor.PNG

Above is the latest drought monitor, below is from last week.

Previous Drought Monitor.PNG

Kansas City International Airport is where our official weather records are taken, and notice how the newest drought monitor has that corner of NW Kansas City dry? That's because it rained nearly 3" there last Sunday.

That moisture in the ground will have an impact on how hot any location may get, as the sun hits the earths surface, evaporates the moisture which is a cooling process.

This process is so significant that in times of widespread severe drought, rural areas, which tend to by cooler compared to urban areas, will be hotter than downtown Kansas City.

With the heat coming for the next 10 days, the storms will probably miss western Missouri and eastern Kansas.

Weather Flow Drought.PNG

The ridge, a big bump in the jet stream, will keep storms moving around and north of us, bringing some drought relief in the Upper Midwest and West Coast.

The stubbornness of this ridge may be helped by Hurricane Hilary (track seen in the cone below) and another area of low pressure near Montreal, not allowing for the bump to move away from us very quickly.

Weather Flow Hilary.PNG

Whatever is left of Hilary as it moves through the West Coast will be carried north of us through the Upper Midwest, probably no rain for us.

But notice the "GULF IS OPEN" graphic? This pattern is notorious for allowing tropical cyclones coming off the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico to come ashore.

A cold front may move through by the second half of next week, which means any system that can form in the Gulf could be sent our way with some heavy rainfall.

Stay cool this weekend and early next week as heat indices will be close to 110, especially south of I-70!