Somehow Kansas City Gets Missed Again

/Somehow Kansas City Gets Missed Again

Somehow Kansas City Gets Missed Again

Good morning bloggers,

You can’t make this up.  This year’s LRC continues leave us baffled.  The thunderstorm activity yesterday is just another chapter on this year’s weather pattern that left Kansas City with only 7.7″ of snow for the entire winter. Oh, we were not alone in the lower snowfall totals:

  •  Amarillo, TX had no snow for the first time in their recorded history. They average 17.8″
  • Dodge City, KS had 3.6″ of snow (21″ average)
  • Wichita, KS had 2.0″ of snow (14.9″ average)
  • Oklahoma City, OK had 0.4″ of snow (7.6″ average)
  • St. Louis, MO had 7.1″ of snow (17.7″ average)

So Kansas City was not alone in the lack of snowfall. We share this statistic with many cities in our region.  But, last nights rain was just ridiculous.  A whopping 0.02″ fell at KCI Airport. Thunderstorms formed just east of the city and organized into a complex of thunderstorms one county away before it tracked to the Mississippi River near St. Louis by evening.  Then thunderstorms were scattered all over the place. Amazingly, Wichita, KS also got missed, only receiving 0.25″ of rain. Here are the estimated rainfall totals from the past 24 hours:

Screen Shot 2018-05-15 at 6.42.22 AM

As you can see, it was most of the Kansas City viewing area that was missed. There were spots that had no rain at all just northwest of the city.  And, look at the next ten day forecast from last nights GFS model:


The drought plagued region to our southwest is forecast to get wet.  This is not a good forecast as we are now moving through what should be the wettest time of the year.  We just keep missing these chances.

Kansas City Weather Timeline:

  • Today: A few periods of clouds mixed with some sun shining through. The chance of measurable rain is less than 20 percent.  High: 81°
  • Tonight:  Clear with light winds from the north.  Low:  63°
  • Wednesday:  Mostly sunny with a few periods of clouds. High:  81°
  • Thursday:  Mostly sunny with a few afternoon clouds.  High:  81°
  • Friday:  Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of thunderstorms. High: 84°
  • Saturday:  Partly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of thunderstorms. High:  87°

Have a great day and thank you for sharing in this weather experience featuring Weather2020 and the LRC. Go over to the Weather2020 blog and join in the conversation. How does the lack of rain affect you? I grew up in Southern California, so I spent 18 years of my life in a region that had very little rain at times. But, some of my favorite weather memories are from the 1977-1978 and 1978-1979 winters that had tons of rain and exciting weather patterns when I was 16 to 17 years old. In those years Los Angeles had 10 to 15 inches of rain in a month several times.  Kansas City has had under 8″ of rain all year so far.  Right now, frustrations continue to mount for us weather enthusiasts.  There has been very little severe weather, very little rain, and we continue to have to explain how and why things are missing us, instead of the much more exciting explanations of how we will get hit by exciting weather set-ups.



2018-05-18T11:25:18+00:00May 15th, 2018|General|50 Comments


  1. Mr. Pete May 15, 2018 at 7:05 am - Reply

    Yard looks like the end of summer not spring. This really is sad.

  2. Richard May 15, 2018 at 7:20 am - Reply

    “Midnight – 7am good chance of rain”

    Why else would you put out an update ??
    Never seen an update on here mid-day except during severe weather or snow

    So much for that

    • Richard May 15, 2018 at 7:25 am - Reply

      Just saying the update was not necessary when you know what this lrc has done.
      Updates have a way of getting our hopes up

  3. Three7s May 15, 2018 at 7:26 am - Reply

    I didn’t want to go there, but I think the writing is on the wall. We’re looking at a drought this year. I don’t think it will be a drought on the level of 2011-2012, but this certainly has drought written all over it.

  4. Troy Newman May 15, 2018 at 7:39 am - Reply

    You can see the connection between the lack of winter systems of any strength and the lack of rain and tornadoes so far. Usually its a dynamic system that bring winter storms and severe outbreaks. We just aren’t getting many of those. Lots of systems fizzling out as they go by. While the capping was blamed this weekend I don’t think that the whole story. We often are capped in the warm sector of a storm but as the main system approaches it erodes and Thunderstorms explode. I don’t think the main trough ever made it here.

    I don’t know what this means for summer. We don’t get dynamic systems in summer anyway. My concern is if a drought is ongoing that the dry soils will cause it to be hotter. Some farmers here were talking about 1956 which was the driest year on record here with 16″ of total rain. So far we have seen a similar amount of precipitation if you look back at the records.

  5. JoeK May 15, 2018 at 7:40 am - Reply


    How much rain did you receive? Lets watch the next period of the 16th-20th to see if you can pick up some additional moisture.

    • Kurt May 15, 2018 at 9:08 am - Reply

      Amazingly received 1.1 inches, some small hail very little lightning close by but very vivid and not much wind. It rained at a good pace for about 35 to 40 minutes and was almost done before 10:00 p.m.

      • JoeK May 15, 2018 at 4:22 pm - Reply

        So you experienced the LRC at work. Now for the second period of tomorrow through the 20th. Hopefully, you will get more

  6. Mason - Basehor May 15, 2018 at 7:41 am - Reply

    Gary —

    Do you still hold out hope for near or above-average precip for KC for May/June like you had in your official Spring Forecast?

  7. Bill May 15, 2018 at 8:03 am - Reply

    Ok this is where I get confused regarding the LRC. The drought has plagued Amarillo through Wichita area but yet they got slammed with rain. We were in an abnormally dry area and yet we didn’t get rain. However, it rained last week randomly in the mornings. I just have a hard time seeing this fit into the LRC pattern. Either the pattern has been read wrong or something is missing. Also take for example how the Southeast was always under the gun for heavy rains and then they weren’t during the severe weather aspect of the season and now the long range is showing this again.

    Quite honestly, I think there is a cycle there, but that the pattern hasn’t been interpreted correctly. Just my thoughts . . . I mean I’m a lawyer and storm chaser, so take my thoughts with a grain of salt. 🙂

    • Troy Newman May 15, 2018 at 9:38 am - Reply

      I think the correlation is a lack of organized storm systems. We didn’t get them this winter and we are not getting them now. With little moisture to work with that means little precip in the winter. In spring and summer there is enough humidity that we can get thunderstorms. Usually at this time of year we have wide spread coverage from an organized systems and severe weather outbreaks but this week that has not been the case. Last night looked like something you would see in July with heavy storms barely moving or moving kind of randomly moving around with some areas getting flooded and maybe some severe weather and others getting nothing. Its hard to say what this summer will be because we don’t get organized storm systems often then anyway. It is not really a great pattern for widespread rain but it also is not a pattern like 2012 with persistent ridging.

  8. jsquibble May 15, 2018 at 8:13 am - Reply

    people are complaining about their back yards being dry but central and southwest ks got some very beneficial rains last night that are more important than having green grass in your backyard

    • Mr. Pete May 15, 2018 at 8:23 am - Reply

      So that’s a good thing, right?

    • Dustin May 15, 2018 at 9:11 am - Reply

      My thoughts exactly.

    • Kurt May 15, 2018 at 9:20 am - Reply

      I can always water most of the yard and keep it from going dormant, I am more concerned about pastures for grazing and hay production, the winter wheat crop (or lack thereof), corn and soybeans. Also, how many farmers will be forced to sell of cattle herds if this is a growing and sever drought. I know that the urban areas would like nice yards, but that really needs to take a back seat to the agricultural interests.

      Yesterdays event was much more like a summer pop up storm pattern than a vigorous spring storm.

  9. Michael Casteel May 15, 2018 at 8:17 am - Reply

    Got a measly .05″ up here in Maryville. Getting dry up here. Have a great day bloggers

  10. Rickmckc May 15, 2018 at 8:49 am - Reply

    If the regions to our west have abnormally dry soil it seems like that would affect us negatively in terms of reduced precipitation. This has been true since last fall. But if drought there diminishes won’t that eventually have a positive effect here?

    Let’s hope that GFS forecast verifies.

  11. Snow Miser May 15, 2018 at 9:01 am - Reply

    The Wunderground forecast for my zip code shows, inexplicably, over a third an inch of rain, with thunderstorms around 2pm. I hope it’s right, but not seeing that anywhere in the models:

  12. Fred Nolan May 15, 2018 at 9:03 am - Reply

    This is all Gary’s fault with the darn LRC. Mother Nature is saying “LRC, pshh. I’m in control here, go away”.
    Ok maybe not. But it sounded good for second there.

  13. Dan M. May 15, 2018 at 9:08 am - Reply

    So the drought plagued areas to our west are about to get wet and this is not a good forecast? Gary I understand what you mean as it is not good for KC, but to have drought areas get beneficial rain is something I would call a great forecast. We tend to focus only on our immediate area, not realizing how important it is that these other areas receive much needed rain. Maybe if the pattern changes for them, it will also change for us in NE Kansas.

    Just thought this could better stated and focus on what could be a really positive change. Let’s hope that forecast verifies.

    I did receive .40″ of rain 7 miles NE of Topeka last night. While not a lot, it is better then nothing.

  14. Dustin May 15, 2018 at 9:15 am - Reply

    SPC has severe weather in the area on Friday. Gary, are you and the team seeing this showing up?

  15. REAL HUMEDUDE May 15, 2018 at 9:23 am - Reply

    Hey you guys, Thunderstorms are always chaotic. Convective rainfall patterns have driven me bananas for 36 years, and will continue to do so long as I am around. These types of storms happen around here, look how much rain fell just 50 miles away from KC. We could have easily gotten that 4-6″, we just didn’t this time. Its not going to be the driest year on record, not even close, not with 6″ rains falling nearby. Its not as if every system is coming through the entire region with virga every time like we saw in 2012. Keep your shirt on, GFS is showing several more chances

    I feel guilty for reporting a beautiful 1.2″ of nice soaking rain last night at the farm, we missed every single storm core but managed to get the blow off showers for an extended period and I feel very blessed to have gotten what I did. Hoping we get a few random cells this afternoon around the area for those that missed out

  16. DanT May 15, 2018 at 10:07 am - Reply

    It’s all about where you live. If we got what SE KS got last night then our perspective would be different. One decent rain event would help, but it’s still the same pattern with few opportunities to get consistent rainfall. My front which faces South is so stressed out. Only 1.11” in April and .94” of rain in May (Olathe)

    • DanT May 15, 2018 at 10:09 am - Reply

      Front yard is full sun this time of year

  17. Anonymous by choice May 15, 2018 at 10:26 am - Reply

    Same but different. #WETDROUGHT

    Fits the LRC, except all the cities you listed got rain. What a bunch of BS. Evidently the LRC is a microclimate tool for KC only? Wow, amazing to see the lemmings on this blog that buy into this and defend it at every turn. NOW COMPLETE DETRACTOR.

    • Anonymous May 15, 2018 at 12:58 pm - Reply

      It’s common to criticize what one doesn’t understand. It’s part of feeling inferior, but one shouldn’t. It just means you need more knowledge on the subject matter. We are all like that regarding some issue.

    • JoeK May 15, 2018 at 4:27 pm - Reply

      Go into the archives to the March 26th blog and read my post to Kurt about a good chance of rain for St Joe between May 10-14 and tell me how the LRC is fake?

  18. Themodelsareajoke May 15, 2018 at 10:33 am - Reply

    Not sure why with this year’s LRC some folks are having a hard time seeing the writing on the wall.

  19. sierravista May 15, 2018 at 10:34 am - Reply

    Hmmmm…anonymous by choice…hiding behind that name says a lot!

    • JoeK May 15, 2018 at 4:29 pm - Reply


      Some still believe there is such a thing as anonymity in the cyber world and there ISN’T. I am on the verge of exposing Anonymous as I am tired of their childish behavior. He has been an the blogs for quite some time under various names and has always been a problem

  20. L Arnold May 15, 2018 at 11:02 am - Reply

    A whopping 0.02″ in NW Lawrence. May total to date is 0.98″. I will be reporting the results of a soil moisture test for CoCoRaHS tomorrow and will post thje results here too.

  21. Mattinleavenworth May 15, 2018 at 11:10 am - Reply

    Well, I do remember growing up having some very wet July months. It can happen. July is the best month of the year BTW. Boating at the lakes, the 4th, fireworks, sun tans, bikinis, sandals, my birthday, late sunsets. Did you know July was named after the Roman General Julius Caesar? Yeah I know it gets a little hot, but it’s a lot better than January temps.

    As for drought impacts in my neck of the woods it’s ok for work as I need dry fields/dirt roads to drive across to access wells with heavy equipment. However, on all the lands I spend time on I have noticed the farm ponds at low levels. We really do need Multiple rain events soon of an inch or more to help them catch up to normal levels. I was just outside and had heavy raindrops sprinkle down for a few minutes but it quickly went away and the drops dried up.

  22. Roger May 15, 2018 at 11:35 am - Reply

    Here are some rain details from the last 24 hours for the Wichita area. Many areas still received under 0.25 inches.

  23. Vernon T. Taggert May 15, 2018 at 12:33 pm - Reply

    Busting out the sprinkler after work, gotta get that yard greener.

  24. Anonymous May 15, 2018 at 12:49 pm - Reply

    It is very frustrating seeing the lightning, hearing the thunder only a few miles away, and getting zero, not even a single raindrop. I have faith that the rains will come to my doorstep, but man I was so close last night to some good rains….

  25. Nick May 15, 2018 at 12:55 pm - Reply

    Well North St.Joe had two or three very brief downpours and that was it, we just missed the big cell that tried to come in from the southwest last night, and missed small but intense cells just to the north. I still think last night was a good sign that the drought overall is contracting, so hopefully we are primed to “pop” at some point but I will be weary until it finally really happens, normally summer dries out some, but lately frankly things have not been acting too normal, so we will see.

  26. KS Jones May 15, 2018 at 1:39 pm - Reply

    June is our wettest month out this way (between Marysville & Manhattan), and our average rainfall is slightly greater than KC’s in both May & June, but we’ve fallen behind those averages. We’ve gotten only sprinkles in the past 3 days (barely measurable), and we need 4.32″ of rain by the end of this month to bring us up to YTD average. With 2 weeks to go, that’s still possible.
    We burned our native grassland two weeks ago, and caught 3 days of rain shortly after. The grass is now 9″ to 10″ tall, and the fact that the roots of native grasses go 6 to 7 feet deep helps too.

    • Troy Newman May 15, 2018 at 3:08 pm - Reply

      I was looked back here. We average 28.5 inches per year at my location in RP county and we have had 14″ since June 1 of 2017. It was very wet in May last year but since then we have been below average every month. Its not like we have been unlucky as many spots in NC KS are in the same situation. Only years that were drier were 1901, 1935, 1977,and 1989.

      • KS Jones May 15, 2018 at 10:21 pm - Reply

        Manhattan gets 35.49″ of precipitation each year on average, and Marysville gets 33.58″, so I sorta extrapolate to determine ours midway between the two towns. Your area and ours are both in the Moderate Drought category, but that doesn’t mean we’ve received the same amount of rain. For instance, Amarillo gets 20.31″ of precipitation annually, and they wouldn’t be in any drought category if they got that much, but we’d be in Extreme Drought if we got only that amount. The drought categories are determined by percentages of averages, and I’m sure you already know that.
        Very little of Nebraska is in any drought category, and as I recall, you’re 5 miles from the border on the Republican River, so perhaps, with luck, future storms will be nudged a bit farther south.

      • KS Jones May 16, 2018 at 12:11 am - Reply

        This scheme is new to me.
        Platte River diversion to Republican River would be Nebraska’s first
        By David Hendee World-Herald staff writer
        Mar 7, 2018
        SMITHFIELD, Neb. — The first transfer of water from one river in Nebraska to another could be just over the horizon under a proposal that finally floated its way to Lincoln.
        Or this historic trans-basin diversion from the Platte River to the Republican River could join the list of similar schemes dating to the 1930s that created controversy and left trails of lawsuits before evaporating into dashed dreams in dry places.
        The plan is to divert excess Platte water via canal, culvert and pipeline over the Platte-Republican divide near Smithfield in south-central Nebraska’s Gosper County and run it south into the Republican via Turkey Creek.
        The 25-mile-long stream is a tributary of the Republican starting about 3 miles west of Smithfield. It empties into the Republican between Edison and Oxford. The Republican River rises in Colorado and crosses southern Nebraska before flowing into Kansas.
        The primary objective is to help ensure the state’s compliance with an interstate compact that allocates certain percentages of the Republican River’s flows to Nebraska, Kansas and Colorado, said John Thorburn, general manager of the Tri-Basin Natural Resources District in Holdrege. Although the states have been working in harmony on managing the river in recent years, disputes among the three have escalated to the U.S. Supreme Court.
        After three years of active planning, project proponents submitted their initial permit paperwork to the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources last week.
        Tri-Basin partnered with the Alma-based Lower Republican NRD to develop the $1.4 million to $1.9 million enterprise known as the Platte Republican Diversion Project. It would tap Platte water from a canal owned by the Holdrege-based Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District. The district stores North Platte River water in Lake McConaughy in western Nebraska and delivers it downstream and into canals for delivery to farmers to irrigate cropland.
        “This is precedent-setting for Nebraska,” Thorburn said. “We’d be taking otherwise ‘wasted’ water to be put to good use for a beneficial purpose.”
        Thorburn and others expect resistance from environmental organizations that have raised concerns, saying there really isn’t extra water in the Platte and that it’s all precious in providing habitat for endangered bird species, including the whooping crane, piping plover and least tern.
        The Platte’s floodwater — the excess flows that would be diverted at times — scrubs trees and other vegetation from sand bars and other important habitat for sandhill cranes. Downstream near Lincoln and Omaha, the river replenishes aquifers and well fields providing drinking water to the state’s two largest cities.
        The diversion would not occur during the June-through-August irrigation season, Thorburn said.
        The potential economic impact of the project in the Republican basin would range from $14.2 million to $33 million, depending on how much of the water required to meet interstate agreements and obligations comes from the diversion versus other sources, according to a study by the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

  27. Kurt May 15, 2018 at 3:57 pm - Reply

    I know that St. Joseph missed the rains that I received, the majority of the storm was south if I-229 that loops around the south side of St. Joseph. The city itself is 6.4 inches inches below average YTD. Find it hard to believe that’s not an issue and that this isn’t more of a drought pattern even if it’s localized. The long term, going back to mid April 2017 our deficit is about 16-18 inches in this area. That’s roughly 35 to 45 percent of average. I am puzzled that other areas have higher year-to-date totals as a proportion of their normal year-to-date and the St. Joseph area is only classified in moderate drought. We must have some really good subsoil moisture. How long does that last if we don’t get consistent widespread rain?

    We’d need the inch of rain I got last night each week through July and still we’d be about 6 inches down year to date. Just saying we need more than random clusters of storms that park over one area to alleviate the region wide dryness (at least up here). Also we’d need it consistent going into the new LRC to fill up ponds and replenish the soil.

    This is just a bad lrc lacking consistent and widespread rains to relieve an ongoing dryness that carried over form last year for areas north and northwest of Kansas City.

    • Anonymous May 15, 2018 at 8:31 pm - Reply

      I never really like the drought monitor as it doesn’t seem to always fit. I am only in a moderate drought but its the 4th driest 12 month stretch on record. It is not isolated either as many parts of NC KS are about the same. Concordia is the reporting station around here and they hit a couple really big rains and aren’t nearly as far below normal because of it. I don’t know if that is what the deal is or not. I also noticed some radar estimated precip totals this winter showing more moisture around here than actually occurred. I do prefer the climate prediction center’s soil moisture anomaly map as I feel it does a better job of indicating conditions for growing things.

  28. Tdogg May 15, 2018 at 5:06 pm - Reply

    I still think we are getting one more big snow 😉

    • Lary Gezak May 15, 2018 at 5:14 pm - Reply

      Dude you are the most immature person I’ve ever seen. Nobody wants you on this blog anymore

    • Mr. Pete May 15, 2018 at 6:17 pm - Reply

      What part of Canada do you live in? 🇨🇦

  29. Mr. Pete May 15, 2018 at 5:16 pm - Reply

    Gary how’s that EOI rating looking for tonight?


  30. Kurt May 15, 2018 at 6:47 pm - Reply

    EOI is a 15 on a scale of one to ten!!

  31. L.B May 15, 2018 at 8:06 pm - Reply

    we can not control it, so love it and move on. dry is weather too! Yes it can cause problems but we are Americans, we can handle this

    • Mr. Pete May 15, 2018 at 10:10 pm - Reply


  32. Nick May 15, 2018 at 11:38 pm - Reply

    Well this IS a weather blog, so imo it is the place to share all of our weather experiences, even the frustrating ones, and if the dryness continues I will be sharing my experiences here ;), hopefully though I will have good news to report sooner rather than later. 😛

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