The final two storms in this series

Good morning bloggers,

A series of six storm systems has been tracking across the United States.

  • Storm #4 of this series is now hitting the northeast hard
  • Storm #5 is now over the southern Rockies and western plains states
  • Storm #6 will be developing early next week

There will be a rather substantial break and shift in the pattern after storm #6 moves by and we can look for this part of the pattern to cycle back through near the end of May.  I am concerned that the jet stream will be much weaker and these storm systems will be farther north and much weaker in the fourth LRC cycle. If they are not that much weaker then that will be one way how the drought won’t begin building again.

Yesterday I showed this graphic on the air projecting the forecast outlook for the month of April:

This series of six storm systems was able to produce some wide spread rainfall and Kansas City actually ended up with above average rainfall in March as you can see on these March Stats:

Storm #4 is not done yet:

Winter storm warnings are in effect. This storm intensified as it moved into the northeast.  Boston will receive April snowflakes today with inland areas getting nearly a foot of snow.

Storm #5:

This next storm in the series is now spreading rain over Kansas and snow over the higher elevations farther west. This storm will be splitting in two or three pieces. Take a look:

On this map above, you can see the 500 mb forecast map valid tonight.  The storm moving out into the plains is caught underneath the main jet stream which is tracking across southern Canada north of this storm. Storm #5 will split into two pieces tonight with one piece over eastern Colorada and the main storm dropping southwest over New Mexico. This southern part will get ejected out on Monday as storm #6 develops.  Storm #5 will produce bands of rain out over the plains and then into the Mississippi River Valley by Monday night.  Here is the 24 hour rainfall forecast from 7 PM Sunday to 7 PM Monday:

The latest data is much wetter on this storm #5 beginning with rain and thunderstorms in a thin April band near the south side of KC on Sunday morning.  Storm #5 is also producing this risk:

We will look at this severe weather set up later tomorrow and Monday. Then we will move onto storm #6:

Have a great Saturday! I have my first week off of the year from 41 Action News. I, of course, will be working on everything Weather2020, analyzing this fascinating pattern, working on our paper, and a lot more while heading out to California.  And, speaking of “heading” out, tonight I am emcee of the big Shave To Save fundraiser. And, then my vacation really begins around 10 PM tonight.


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  1. KS Jones April 1, 2017 at 8:53 am - Reply

    Got clipped by the east side of storm # 5 as it streams NE, and got a sprinkle of rain from 7 AM to 7:15 AM (between Manhattan & Marysville, KS), but no rain has fallen since then (as of 8:50 AM).

    • Gary April 1, 2017 at 9:29 am - Reply

      This storm #5 is going to be interesting to track in the next two days. For your area, it appears that most of this is going to be southeast of you, after the first area went northwest of you.

      Have a great day!

      • KS Jones April 1, 2017 at 3:47 pm - Reply

        That northern system of storm #5 clipped us twice more before taking a more northerly track (rather than its earlier northeasterly flow), and we got 0.1″ of rain before it moved west of here. 
        Current radar (3:40 PM) shows the southern system (extending down through western Oklahoma and central Texas) may be taking a northerly track as well, but it might veer eastwardly before the northern part of it reaches here.

  2. Mr. Pete April 1, 2017 at 11:39 am - Reply

    How much rain predicted for today’s rain?

    • rickmckc April 1, 2017 at 2:00 pm - Reply

      Latest GFS and NAM both showing .75-1.1 for KCI area from late tonight through Monday, although GFS shows Monday with showers in AM followed by clearing and warmer in afternoon.

      Hope that one is right as it is time for some golf!

  3. Rockdoc April 1, 2017 at 1:59 pm - Reply

    Uh Oh. You know what happens when Gary leaves town. Does this mean there will be storm outbreak while he’s in Palm Springs? I bet with the moisture that they’ve received out west the desert region will be in bloom. Joshua Tree NP would be great to visit this time of year too!

    • rickmckc April 1, 2017 at 2:02 pm - Reply

      Actually, those 850MB temps and 500MB thicknesses on the GFS make me wonder if a few snowflakes might mix in on Thursday morning … which would be yet another validation of the LLTI theory (“Lezak Leaving Town Index” for those unaware of the nomenclature :)).

  4. Mr. Pete April 2, 2017 at 10:10 am - Reply

    Not a drop last night.

  5. Bill in Lawrence April 2, 2017 at 12:14 pm - Reply


    Good Sunday morning to you sir.

    Picked up around .15 last night which brings my weekly total to around 2.5; in this LRC and in cycle 3, that is absolutely perfect!!! Even brough the pond up close to 1.5 feet!! 🙂 The interesting thing is, is that we were so close here to really filling everything; if we had managed to get one or two of those down pours Wednesday night, it really would have ran.

    A couple random thoughts on this early Sunday afternoon….

    Looking ahead, the past 3 runs of the GFS showing my area gettin Close to an inch over the next 24 hours. All three runs show the surface low tracking in between Joplin and Springfield which would pout us in somew good rain amounts. The question is however, is this track correct? Looking at the current radar, it appears that track may about 150 miles too far west and that the actual track will wind up being west of Springfield. Considering how narrow the band of heavier precip is with this system, that could put me in less than a .25 when all said and done. Will be interersting to see hw it all evolves over the next 12 hours.

    Regarding Wednesday; I will wait until this one is through to even worry about that.The past 3 GFS runs have us getting good rains on Wednesday as well, but if they are off on the current system, no reason to put any stock in Wednesday.

    Have a great Sunday everyone

    Bill in Washington Creek Valley in Lawrence

    • Gary April 2, 2017 at 1:50 pm - Reply

      I will write up a new blog tonight, then hitting the airways tomorrow on the way to Palm Springs. Yes, it is a major LLTI (Lezak’s Leaving Town Index). It could be enough of a factor to get our ponds to fill up. This is storm #6 in the series on Tuesday night and it is looking ridiculously wet. We could get a lot of Aprils average from this storm. The next one after Wednesday is due around April 12th-13th, which is right on cycle from our first inch of snow December 17th. Could it snow again? And in between and just after that storm there will likely be 80°+ day, maybe even a 90 degree day or two later this month, and a freeze. My goodness. I will talk about this in our next blog entry.


      • Heat MIser April 2, 2017 at 2:00 pm - Reply

        UH OH, LLTI Index is high! :-O Love the kind of diversity of weather in the same month…awesome!

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