Thunderstorms and Snowflakes On January 22nd

/Thunderstorms and Snowflakes On January 22nd

Thunderstorms and Snowflakes On January 22nd

Good morning bloggers,

Kansas City Weather Timeline:

  • Today:  Cloudy with some rain and snow showers! Temperature in the 30s, staying just above freezing all day.
  • Tonight: Rain changing to snow and ending. A dusting to 1/2″ is possible. Windy and cold. Low: 20s  Some black ice may be a sneaky problem.
  • Tuesday:  Mostly sunny with a high of 39°

Sometimes we may not realize that Kansas City is quite often near the center of the storm. The center of the storm does not mean that Kansas City gets the most exciting weather, and this is an understatement because we are in a four year stretch where storm systems have not quite come together during the winter in this area.  We will have completed four straight years without even a 3″ snow storm in two weeks.  The last 3″ snow happened during he first week of February 2014.  But, the center of storm systems have passed through Kansas City, and one of them was directly overhead early this morning. Take a look at this surface map:


The occluded low pressure area was centered just north of KC this morning as you can see on this surface analysis. Take a look at this mornings radar image:

Screen Shot 2018-01-22 at 7.13.45 AM

This is a very functional storm and Kansas City had thunderstorms around midnight, so today began with thunderstorms. The day will likely end with a little bit of snow as the wrap around moisture moved in with the comma head.  Temperatures will likely be just above freezing later this afternoon and evening so any travel problems should be limited.

7:14 AM Radar:  The comma head was showing an increase in the precipitation early this morning as you can see below.


We will be monitoring this area of rain and snow showers as it rotates around the storm this morning. There may be a dusting of snow, and possibly even up to 1/2″ or so in a few spots this evening. If this gets a bit more organized then it could produce around an inch near KC, but I am just expecting perhaps a dusting at this moment. We still will have gone from thunderstorms to snow in the same calendar day, which is pretty exciting but our streak of lower than 3″ of snow will continue.


2018-01-23T10:40:52+00:00January 22nd, 2018|General|96 Comments


  1. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 8:05 am - Reply

    Here in the cold sector we r walking a fine line. Moderate rain 30 min se of here and moderate snowfall here in winona and pts w.nw of here. There will b a very sharp cutoff of a dusting to 2 in up to 12 to 18 within a very narrow window. They have camcelled school for my kids so hopefully the forecast isnt a bust. Regardless, a diffucult forecast for sure. Im curious to know how much overnight precip u guys received. Any reports would b appreciated. Also, has there been much talk of the tornado down by joplin? Thx

    • RainsJ January 22, 2018 at 9:20 am - Reply

      Yep, checking in from Mankato, MN.. very sharp gradient in just about a 20 mile span.. classes are all canceled, a nice break from the college life for a day, and visibility is about half a mile as of now.. Weather Channel is live in Mankato, can hear the wind howl inside! Hopefully back home you guys get snow wrapped around!

      • Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 10:06 am - Reply

        U should b in the sweet spot. Im in the transition zone. Currently sitting at 33° with mix precip. I think this warm nose is going to cut into our totals. Im thinkin 3 to 6 with sleet and frz rain mix

        • RainsJ January 22, 2018 at 10:26 am - Reply

          yeah, it’s been snowing since early this morning here.. looks like the cities are even gonna get close to a foot.. Winona is on the outer side of the storm, but a lot more ice/sleet than snow unfortunately.. Be safe out there!

          • Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 10:29 am - Reply

            It will b interesting as we r right on the cutoff. La crosse may only see an inch. We probably have about 2 right now so who knows

  2. Richard January 22, 2018 at 8:28 am - Reply

    Quite the light show last night west of me. Finally made its way to Olathe during the night, woke me up.
    Some rain, not much.

  3. Richard January 22, 2018 at 8:32 am - Reply

    Black ice tonight or in the morning ?

    • Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 8:35 am - Reply

      Richard, do u know how much moisture u received?

  4. f00dl3 January 22, 2018 at 8:35 am - Reply

    The latest NAM and HRRR both show a gigantic 0.4 to 0.8″ of snow falling on warm ground which may accumulate to a dusting on grassy surfaces!

    It’s flakeageddon!

    • Terry January 22, 2018 at 10:00 am - Reply

      Yeah but what time of day will it happen day ? or late afternoon and evening. If at night It will stick .

  5. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 8:44 am - Reply

    Classic wrapp around flurry storm. Hopefully its enough to make terry happy!

  6. REAL HUMEDUDE January 22, 2018 at 8:55 am - Reply

    I got decent hail last night in Shawnee around midnight, bigger than Pea but smaller than marbles. Maybe a quick 1/4″. Farm got totally missed. The storm for later in the week has POOFED hard.

  7. Kurt January 22, 2018 at 9:03 am - Reply

    I got maybe a tenth to 1/15 an inch, pretty good rains from KCI to about the Plattte/Buchanan county line and another good area west and northwest of St Joseph, most areas appeared to be have less and 1/4 an inch but some were lucky.

  8. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 9:13 am - Reply

    Ty kurt! Glad u guys received some moisture!

  9. Rod January 22, 2018 at 9:39 am - Reply

    This storm was definitely not a miss for me in Ashland, MO when it comes to rainfall. Checked my rain gauge this morning & picked up 1.47” & got a good soaking rain overnight with some thunder. Would I have preferred that to be all a snow yes but I’ll take the moisture.

    • Michael Casteel January 22, 2018 at 9:41 am - Reply

      I used to live in Ashland when my dad was going to grad school at MU in ‘74 fun little town I remember catching box turtles LOL

      • Rod January 22, 2018 at 9:35 pm - Reply

        It’s a quiet little town, moved here from Columbia due to high crime when my son was almost one year old & we love the Southern Boone School District. Been here just over 10 years. Perfect location being half way point between Jefferson City & Columbia.

  10. Michael Casteel January 22, 2018 at 9:39 am - Reply

    Picked up a nice .42” of rainfall overnight wishing it were snow though have a good day bloggers!

  11. LYITC41 January 22, 2018 at 9:50 am - Reply

    .09 here in south OP 123 & BV Pkwy and some lightning. Wish we got more rain but glad we missed the “blizzard”. Dry slots, the snow killer.

  12. Steve January 22, 2018 at 9:50 am - Reply

    Gads what exciting weather! Poof Poof Poof.

    • Jack January 22, 2018 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      What is going poof? This is what exactly was expected today.

  13. SteveA January 22, 2018 at 9:55 am - Reply

    are these storms that are passing thru Iowa, Ill, Ind consistent with the LRC. thank

    • Brian watson January 22, 2018 at 9:18 pm - Reply

      Yes they are consistent with the lrc. Gary has told us that somewhere in the United States a storm would be coming though somewhere within a week or two.

  14. Urbanity January 22, 2018 at 10:53 am - Reply

    Windmill Farm destroying the comma head. We got a trace of snow out here west of Salina, not much precip to speak of.

  15. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 11:01 am - Reply

    Windmill farm destoying precip? I live right by one and have never heard of such a thing. What’s thinking behind this phenomenon? Thx

    • Clint January 22, 2018 at 11:17 am - Reply

      I bet he believes the world is flat.

      • Urbanity January 22, 2018 at 12:59 pm - Reply

        I bet you believe your stomach is flat. I’ve posted several studies on Lezak’s blog regarding the significant impact wind farms have on precipitation, it’s just that no one really wants to believe anything controversial or not discussed among talking heads.

        • Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 1:07 pm - Reply

          That was funny.

        • MikeL January 22, 2018 at 2:05 pm - Reply

          According to Schopenhauer, the three stages of truth are (1) ridicule (2) violent opposition and (3) acceptance as self-evident. Maybe it applies in this case and maybe it doesn’t. We would need to examine it.

    • Urbanity January 22, 2018 at 1:06 pm - Reply

      The effect of a giant wind farm on precipitation in a regional climate model
      B H Fiedler and M S Bukovsky
      School of Meteorology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73072-7307, USA

      “In the Gulf of Mexico, there is a notable paired region of enhanced and diminished precipitation in figure 4. The time series for the region within the white box (figure 8) shows that the difference is dominated by the absence of two monstrous precipitation events in that locale when the wind farm is present. The time series is obviously non-Gaussian and Student’s t-test does not formally apply. Nevertheless, we are left with little confidence, from formal application of the t-test or otherwise, that a study with an infinite number of warm seasons would reveal a systematic impact on precipitation in the Gulf of Mexico that resembles figure 4.”

    • Urbanity January 22, 2018 at 1:10 pm - Reply

      B H Fiedler and M S Bukovsky


      “The Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model is employed as a nested regional climate model to study the effect of a giant wind farm on warm-season precipitation in the eastern two-thirds of the USA. The boundary conditions for WRF are supplied by 62 years of NCEP/NCAR (National Center for Environmental Prediction/National Center for Atmospheric Research) global reanalysis. In the model, the presence of a mid-west wind farm, either giant or small, can have an enormous impact on the weather and the amount of precipitation for one season, which is consistent with the known sensitivity of long-term weather forecasts to initial conditions.”

  16. Phillip January 22, 2018 at 11:11 am - Reply

    It’s pure conspiracy, nothing more.

  17. Phillip January 22, 2018 at 11:14 am - Reply

    Got a light rain shower here in indep, driving home to grain valley. Weather app pushed any precip back to 2pm though? 🤔

  18. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 11:16 am - Reply

    In a quick search and study i found alot of research arguing both sides of the windmill farm theory. Interesting theory regardless. Like all theories, u are on one side or the other. If it does indeed impact the weather my thoughts would b that it is so minimal, one would never b able to tell. Just my 2 cents. Here is se mn we have transitioned back to a mix as we sit at 33°. Current precip total . 25

  19. Phillip January 22, 2018 at 11:18 am - Reply

    Gary, do you have a more specific timeline for precip today and changeover time? Seems like that would be important even if we’re just getting snow showers and a dusting- 1/2”. Could impact these non driving peeps during rush hour?

  20. Phillip January 22, 2018 at 11:20 am - Reply

    Sorry for so many comments, but car temp shows 38° with mixed precip falling now. 1-70 and woods chapel

  21. Anonymous January 22, 2018 at 11:30 am - Reply

    Any ideas about the weather during rush hour? I know you mentioned that the temp should stay above freezing all day – does that include the evening commute?

  22. Mandy January 22, 2018 at 11:31 am - Reply

    Any ideas about the weather during rush hour? I know you mentioned that the temp should stay above freezing all day – does that include the evening commute?

    • Gary January 22, 2018 at 11:50 am - Reply


      There will likely be some snow, but temperatures will be above freezing through the rush hour. So, it should only be wet, unless it snows very hard as the sun is setting, which there is only very slight chance of that happening.

      • Mandy January 22, 2018 at 11:56 am - Reply

        Great – thanks for the blog. Love how interactive and helpful you are 🙂

        • Gary January 22, 2018 at 11:59 am - Reply

          Your welcome, we are so glad that you are enjoying this experience. There is a spinning disturbance moving into the KC metro area right now. Let us know what you experience. I am going to do a twitter live, then a Facebook live.


  23. Getmuck January 22, 2018 at 11:40 am - Reply

    My house in Olathe at 133rd and Blackbob received .04 last night with a few rumbles. My cousin in Emporia KS reports blinding snow with nothing sticking.

  24. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 11:41 am - Reply

    Dont apologize Philip! Thx for your update as well as the location. I may be 400 miles away but i still enjoy following the kc weather! ive also lived and chicago and st louis and still follow the weather there as well but this bloq sets kc apart from other former cities. Thx for making this possible gary and wx team!

  25. Roger January 22, 2018 at 11:51 am - Reply

    Well, might as well get prepared for severe – extreme drought to march it’s way from the southwest to places like Salina, Hutchinson, Wichita, Pratt, Great Bend, IS. Sooner rather than later.

    • Roger January 22, 2018 at 11:52 am - Reply


    • REAL HUMEDUDE January 22, 2018 at 12:44 pm - Reply

      Roger, it’s winter time and we average very little precip this time of year. You are getting the cart in front of the horse, let’s see how dry it is this spring and you can talk drought at that time but until then you are just wasting your time and setting up for a big dose of Crow once the wet season arrives

      • Roger January 22, 2018 at 9:42 pm - Reply

        We had a rainy 25-35 day stretch from mid-march to late April. Other than that it’s been hard to get sufficient moisture.

    • Urbanity January 22, 2018 at 1:01 pm - Reply

      I think the NOAA has us in severe drought conditions already. Hume, you forget, we haven’t had sufficient moisture out here since early June so it’s not just a winter thing.

      • Troy Newman January 22, 2018 at 1:40 pm - Reply

        I would agree on the drought. We are having one of the driest 100 day stretches in 100 years and that is true for much of Central and Western KS as well as the Southern Plains. La Nina + dry LRC could equal bad news for those wanting to pasture cattle this spring. OK wheat crop is rated only 15% G/E and KS wheat crop rating has plunged as well. Since July 1 we are 6.5 inches behind on precip here and this is not a localized situation at all.

  26. Anonymous January 22, 2018 at 11:53 am - Reply

    Just noticed a trough in south Kansas that wasn’t on the map earlier this morning. Could that be a sign for organization of the precip that is west/southwest of kc?

  27. LYITC41 January 22, 2018 at 11:57 am - Reply

    Snow band W of KTWX showed a very slight increase in intensity about 1150, nothing to get excited about. It’s just about done.

  28. RainsJ January 22, 2018 at 12:01 pm - Reply

    Weather channel made it seem as if the snow band was gonna wrap around KC this afternoon for what it’s worth, not sure how Much though

  29. MikeL January 22, 2018 at 12:13 pm - Reply

    Snowing pretty hard here in SW Topeka – the hardest I’ve seen in quite a while. Grass has a touch of white but it is 35 degrees and pretty wet so hard to accumulate.

  30. Mr. Pete January 22, 2018 at 12:13 pm - Reply

    Heard its snowing in Topeka…

  31. Anonymous January 22, 2018 at 12:32 pm - Reply

    I really hope MoDOT around Metro KC stay off the roads today. I am so done with the lingering road treatment, I don’t want any more of it. Thank you so much. 👌🏻

  32. Anonymous January 22, 2018 at 12:52 pm - Reply

    Rain/snow in Leavenworth. Raining and then a second later snowing hard and then back to rain super quick.

  33. Melanie January 22, 2018 at 12:52 pm - Reply

    We had pea sized hail last night around 11:30pm. It broke my rain gauge, so I don’t know how much rain we received. I am in Eastern Shawnee.

  34. Alex Pickman January 22, 2018 at 12:53 pm - Reply

    A light rain/snow/grauple/sleet here in St. Joe right now

  35. Snow Miser January 22, 2018 at 1:05 pm - Reply

    Just got a batch of snow mixed in with rain in downtown Independence.

  36. Phillip January 22, 2018 at 1:15 pm - Reply

    We need this in any form so let’s just stay positive about the precip we ARE getting 😊

  37. Clayton January 22, 2018 at 1:34 pm - Reply

    Pretty cold. Have some big snowflakes hitting the ground in Leavenworth big if you look up in the sky it’s snowing like crazy. Huge flakes. Just shows how quickly it melts before reaching the surface.

  38. Bsmike January 22, 2018 at 1:54 pm - Reply

    Sure looks like the coma head will wrap right in metro!!!

    • Gary January 22, 2018 at 3:33 pm - Reply

      It is trying, but we may be on the edge. Even this is a battle, but there are a few snowflakes coming down.

      There is a big snowstorm forming on the day 10 European Model. I know, I know. Day 10! Here we go again.


  39. KS Jones January 22, 2018 at 2:03 pm - Reply

    Here, midway between Manhattan & Marysville, we had heavy fog, mist and a bit of light rain overnight. That precipitation transitioned to snow when the air temperature dipped to 32° at 8:30 AM.
    Currently, we have moderately heavy snow blowing horizontally with wind gusting to 30 MPH.
    Most of the snow that had fallen between the 11th & 14th melted away yesterday except for the deepest drifts on the lee side of terraces, but now the ground is completely white again.

  40. Brad in MN January 22, 2018 at 3:18 pm - Reply

    Just heard thunder during this snowstorm! That is a first for me!

  41. Stl78 January 22, 2018 at 3:42 pm - Reply

    Where u at brad? I dont remember. Im in winona,mn

    • Brad in MN January 22, 2018 at 4:17 pm - Reply

      STL78, I am in Burnsville

  42. Anonymous January 22, 2018 at 3:47 pm - Reply

    While not thundersnow, it’s picked here south of St. Joseph, ground is covered again as well as all exposed surfaces, streets mainly wet and slushy but have a good dusting so far and still coming down.

  43. Fred Nolan January 22, 2018 at 4:00 pm - Reply

    Now if this would just stall right here and continue to spin we will be in business. One can hope.

  44. Mr. Pete January 22, 2018 at 4:21 pm - Reply

    Gary has the snow vest on

  45. Mr. Pete January 22, 2018 at 4:23 pm - Reply

    Snowflakes in Prairie Village

  46. Brad in MN January 22, 2018 at 4:51 pm - Reply

    Going to end up with at least a foot up here in MN. Just dug 2 neighbors out with shovels who got high centered in front of my house.

  47. Justnora January 22, 2018 at 4:56 pm - Reply

    Snowing nicely north of the river near Penguin Park

  48. Freezemiser January 22, 2018 at 5:15 pm - Reply

    It’s snowing in east Independence!

  49. KS Jones January 22, 2018 at 5:18 pm - Reply

    Now we’re on the west side of the swirl with lighter snow. The visibility has increased from 3/8 to 3/4 of a mile, and the wind has increased with gusts up to 45 MPH.

  50. Anonymous January 22, 2018 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    Ground is all white in st joe

  51. Tdogg January 22, 2018 at 6:21 pm - Reply

    Flurry Storm 2018! Storm Robert proved to be a dud

    • HEAT MISER January 22, 2018 at 6:57 pm - Reply

      Not in Lawrence, dude. Its snowing heavily and everything is white. Fourth such snow this winter so far. WOO HOO!!!!

  52. f00dl3 January 22, 2018 at 6:32 pm - Reply

    Whelp, I’ll be. It’s actually snowing at a decent clip at the rate in Lenexa, strong enough to overcome the warm ground temps. Not sticking on pavement, but at this rate we may darn well see 1-2″ tonight with residual wrap-around. Wow!

  53. Matt Maisch January 22, 2018 at 6:50 pm - Reply

    Quick burst of snow has turned the ground white here in Odessa. Not much, but just enough to turn things white.

  54. HEAT MISER January 22, 2018 at 6:58 pm - Reply

    WOO HOO…GIANT SNOW STORM IN TEN DAYS!!!! Is it greedy of me to ask for even more snow?

    • Matt Maisch January 22, 2018 at 7:09 pm - Reply

      I’ve looked at the models on that storm, and therefore must ask. What exactly defines a “giant snow storm” in your eyes? In mine, it better be 12″ of snow or more, otherwise, “giant snow storm” seems a bit much, even in the midst of the pathetic winters we have been experiencing. Just curious.

    • Tdogg January 22, 2018 at 7:12 pm - Reply

      Enjoy your 1/2 of snow what will be gone by lunch tomorrow. Get some sleep, you and Terry will have school tomorrow 😉

    • Bluetooth January 22, 2018 at 7:55 pm - Reply

      That’s hilarious!!

  55. REAL HUMEDUDE January 22, 2018 at 7:11 pm - Reply

    Looks like the last weather event for awhile, GFS is boring for a bit

    • f00dl3 January 22, 2018 at 7:28 pm - Reply

      The good part is the next time the Arctic air sets up it probably won’t be as strong, meaning storms may be closer to clipping us than over Alabama and Mexico.

    • Terry January 22, 2018 at 8:31 pm - Reply

      until like Around February 2nd or 3rd then it will pick up

      • Kurt January 22, 2018 at 9:02 pm - Reply

        Huh? I’m not sure your positive vibes will help this winter.

  56. Phillip January 22, 2018 at 7:34 pm - Reply

    This comma head died fast…no one in the immediate viewing area got more than 1” of snow

    • choppy January 22, 2018 at 8:17 pm - Reply

      I got roughly zero inches out east around Wellington 🙂

  57. Richard January 22, 2018 at 8:22 pm - Reply

    Family friend in New Prague MN posted pics on facebook at 7 pm
    Patio table had over a foot on it and still coming down huge flakes.

  58. Mr. Pete January 22, 2018 at 9:02 pm - Reply

    It’s very windy!!!!

  59. Bill in Lawrence January 22, 2018 at 9:05 pm - Reply


    Good Monday evening to you sir!!

    Quite the exciting last 30 hours weather wise here!!

    First of all in my very humble opinion, this storm did not go poof. Did we get the snow in western Kansas to Minnesota…no….did we get the rain that Columbia eastward had….nope….however, I went from 4 below to 60 in part due to this storm….I had thunderstorms last night and while I did not receive a huge amount of rain, I still had quite the light show and picked up close to .25. Then today, I got to watch it snow for nearly 6 hours and at times it was heavier than any snow I have had since March of 2014 winding up with close to an inch; if it had just been 4 degrees colder…..With the rain and snow I picked up close to ,30-.33 of qpf from this storm…not too shabby for being right dab in the middle of the dry slot.

    This will be the 5th snow event of the year; 2 around Christmas; the sleet/snow/freezing rain storm 2 weeks ago; the 3 inches last Sunday; and now this one. That gives me close to 7 inches of frozen precipitation for the year and close to 1.25 of qpf since December 18th. I have been very fortunate and realize these numbers do not reflect the entire area but still I will respectfully argue that this winter is so much better than last winter for the winter weather enthusiast.

    Finally, the 12Z GFS really picked up on the “cold part” of the pattern due to come back around early February and showed a reading of below 0 for here. To be sure there will be varying degrees of how this will look and I would even guess on some runs the cold will actually become a blow torch but today’s 12Z was the third or fourth run that has picked up on the idea of pretty cold beginning to February which would indeed fit the LRC. I would respectfully argue that we are done with winter just yet.

    Have a great evening everyone….yes the snow will be gone by noon tomorrow and this was actually more of a late March/early April storm than an end of January one but as someone who enjoys snow, I’m not going to be choosy. 🙂

    Bill in Washington Creek Valley in Lawrence

  60. Rod January 22, 2018 at 9:40 pm - Reply

    Steady wind driven snow falling in Ashland at 9:30 PM, roof tops & elevated surfaces are white with a dusting. Beautiful winter scene at the moment.

  61. Mr. Pete January 22, 2018 at 9:47 pm - Reply

    Way more snow than I thought was coming. Still coming down good and yard is totally white.

  62. Stl78 January 23, 2018 at 7:43 am - Reply

    8.2 earthquake in alaska, tsunami warnings in effect! Wow!

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