Do you know what you are looking at when you analyze a surface map like this? The circle is the location of the observation site. The black line shows where the wind is blowing from and how strong the winds are. When there is no black line, like in Topeka and Manhattan, KS on this map above, then this indicated calm winds. When there is a line just off the back of the line, then that indicated just 5 knots or less, or almost calm conditions. Notice how most locations are in this 5 knots or less range
It's a rather quiet Memorial Day after a rather active last week. A tropical storm formed briefly before quickly weakening back into a depression. When the wind speeds are shown to be and verified at 35 knots (39 mph) or stronger it will become a named storm, and this was the second one of the season, Bonnie.
Today is the first day in many weeks without a cloud in the sky to start the day. It has been a very wet month and it isn't done yet. The next chance of thunderstorms is showing up to finish off May early in the week with one more chance of thunderstorms that may push Kansas City to over 10" for the month.
I was at the game last night, a great night for baseball in KC, and to watch the KC Royals come back from down 5-1 to win 7-5 was incredible. And to watch Duffy pitch 5 1/3 perfect innings before allowing five straight hits and two home runs, one of which was a Grand Slam, and then to come back and win that game was again, incredible!
The storm system that has been impacting tornado alley this week with many days of severe weather risks is kicking out today. What I mean, is that it is ejecting out of the western states and out into the plains states. Take a look:
Take a look at this radar image above, at 9:10 PM. This shows the warm front, the warm addiction developing zone of thunderstorms, and it's interacting with the "Veteran's Day" storm from 198 days ago that is repeating today. This late spring version has produced this rare radar image.
It has been an active few days across Kansas, and it is far from over. The next two days also look a bit on wild side and we will discuss this in today's blog entry. Let's begin with a look at the supercell thunderstorm that formed around 5:30 PM Wednesday, and then it tracked east turning right to the east-southeast at times near I-70 producing many tornadoes. If you look closely you can see the penetrating top. This is the cumulus tower that shoots through the anvil and up into the stratosphere:
Yesterday was a very active severe weather day over western Kansas, which is prime storm chase territory. There is usually high visibility and very few trees and you can see tornadoes from a long distance. Yesterday, the storm chasers
Are you ready for a term that storm chasers don't like very much? The CAP! Well, the cap can be a very good thing and a very bad thing for storm chasers. When the cap grows stronger, and it is doing so today, it will prevent or "cap" the thunderstorms from developing. The cumulus clouds can not grow through the cap until something forces it to happen, such as a strong front, an upper level disturbance that will cool the cap and break it open,
We are moving into the part of the LRC that has produced in earlier cycles. The Veteran's Day storm is due in this week, and it is right on schedule. Remember, the pattern is still cycling at every 49.5 days on average. Between November 4th and November 20th three rather big upper lows tracked through the southwestern United States and we have been moving through this part of the pattern.