Winter’s Reality Returns Tonight

/Winter’s Reality Returns Tonight

Winter’s Reality Returns Tonight

Good Sunday bloggers,

We have seen some pretty decent weather the last few days, very unlike the end of January.  That all changes later today and tonight as a strong cold front and disturbance head our way from the north and northwest. Now, it will warm up Tuesday and Wednesday before more sustained cold settles in. Also, what about the elusive snow? There are three chances we are now monitoring, tonight, Thursday and February 4th. Yes, February 4th, the four year anniversary of our last 3″ snowstorm.

Let’s go through the changes and snow chances.

Here is the weather timeline through midnight.


SUNDAY 3 PM: The colder air will be moving in as clouds thicken and north winds increase. Temperatures will range from the 30s north to around 50° south.


SUNDAY NIGHT 6 PM TO 1 AM: Temperatures will be dropping as north winds blow 15-25 mph. There will likely be an area of snow tracking from northern to central and eastern Missouri with a dusting to 1″ possible. Sprinkles and flurries will be possible in KC. We will have to watch this for a southwest shift of 50 miles. If this happens, then KC could see minor snow accumulations.  The chance is 20% of that happening.


MONDAY MORNING: It will be clear and cold with lows in the upper teens to low 20s as the wind decreases. If there is any leftover moisture, then black ice is possible. As it stands now, KC will not see enough moisture for any slick spots. It is going to take more than a trace of rain or snow to create black ice by Monday morning.


MONDAY AFTERNOON: It will be mostly sunny with a light wind as highs climb to 30°-35°. So, a typical end of January day, just 20-25 degrees colder than it has been recently.


TUESDAY: The wind will increase from the south and our highs will rise to the 40s. It will be mostly sunny, but clouds to the northwest will increase Tuesday night. We will try to hold off the clouds for the Super Blue Blood Moon. Wednesday will be cloudy, mild and calm with highs around 50°.


THURSDAY: This is our second chance of snow as colder air heads back south. Right now it looks like this snow will stay across southern Missouri, missing KC. The chance is 20% it forms farther north and we get in on some snow.


FEBRUARY 4, 2018: The third chance of snow arrives on the four year anniversary of our last 3″ snowstorm. The GFS has had three straight runs of showing a significant snow on this Superbowl Sunday. The ECMWF did not have much. Is this right? Well, the pattern forecast this day does support snow and it totally fits the LRC. Let’s take a look.



There are three main features to highlight. #1 is a ridge off of the west coast of North America and this forces a system into the Pacific Northwest, feature #2. Feature #3 is a deep trough/vortex that extends from the North Pole to the Midwest. This feature delivers Arctic air south so that feature #2 can run along the south edge of the Arctic air and create snow.

FEB 4, 2018 LABEL

DECEMBER 19, 2017: 47 DAY PRIOR TO FEBRUARY 4TH, 2018: Remember, we are in a 44-51 day cycle, centered on 46-47 days.

This is pretty amazing to us, as you can see features 1,2,3 match up pretty well.  The features were there, but it did not come together for any snow. We did turn much colder a few days later.

DEC 19, 2017 LABEL


Here we go again, features 1, 2 and 3 matched up with where the GFS is forecasting them to be located on February 4th. Again these did not come together to bring snow, but it did turn much colder a few days later.

November 2, 2017 LABEL

So, is the 3″+ snowstorm on the GFS for February 4th to be believed? These three features open the door for the snowstorm as we said above, but we are 0 for 2 in it coming together. So, at this time it is fun to look at it and we know the pattern fits the LRC, but will the specifics line up the third time for snow?  The “third time is a charm”! Right?

Have a great week.

Jeff Penner

2018-01-29T08:12:52+00:00January 28th, 2018|General|71 Comments


  1. NoBeachHere January 28, 2018 at 9:17 am - Reply

    Did some digging on the western ridge.
    A bit of a Sunday morning read but hey, it’s science.

  2. Michael Casteel January 28, 2018 at 9:25 am - Reply

    Do you think we will get the same arctic cold air mass like we did on Jan. 1st-2nd? I recoded -15 degrees both mornings. I was hoping for North of 0 degrees on the next blast. Any thoughts? Thanks,

  3. Bobbie January 28, 2018 at 9:56 am - Reply

    What is it going to take to get this blog to refresh and get a down arrow? This is getting ridiculous.

    • Anonymous January 28, 2018 at 11:45 am - Reply

      STFU about the arrow. Use a smart phone. I have no problem swiping up or down. What are you using? Computer from 1851? Your constant nagging about the arrow is ridiculous.

      • Mr. Pete January 28, 2018 at 3:47 pm - Reply

        Wrong. We have a up arrow. Can’t be hard to create a down one.

  4. Stl78 January 28, 2018 at 10:04 am - Reply

    I just wish the refresh and sign in was back to normal. At least i could log in today. Hopefully, its fixed before the blizzard!

  5. Paul January 28, 2018 at 10:14 am - Reply

    So, Thursday is bust??

    • Gary January 28, 2018 at 10:24 am - Reply

      No, Thursday isn’t a bust because it was never forecast to be anything. But, yes, Thursday is nothing. The Saturday night one is scary; it has 2 to 4 inches on the latest GFS. When you consider we haven’t had 3″ in a storm in almost four complete years, then you may think this is huge. But, it is still questionable. The waves causing it on the latest model run were not very strong. Slightly weaker and it will be another dusting to one inch, which would still be exciting. And, there is a major Arctic blast with it. For it to maximize and be 4 or 5 inches we would need that western wave to just dig a little bit. On this latest run it did not dig at all.


      • Kurt January 28, 2018 at 10:33 am - Reply

        Do you think based on this lrc it’s more likely to be weaker with less digging? The only storm that appears to have dug strong enough was the one last Monday that went north.

        Does the lrc help at this point giving you a sense of more of the same? Just seems rather difficult to get anything to come together here.

      • Paul January 28, 2018 at 11:11 am - Reply

        Sorry didn’t mean the forecast, just I had a little hope😩

        • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 1:06 pm - Reply

          If you try to make it something it will become another….swing and a missss!!!

      • Joe January 28, 2018 at 4:20 pm - Reply

        Reading between the lines…its safe to say a poof warning should be in effect for chance #3.

        • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 6:41 pm - Reply

          Somebody will jump the gun, Terry or Heat, I don’t know which, but when they do, poof, poof, poof……

  6. Anonymous January 28, 2018 at 10:39 am - Reply

    LoL…so chance one is really not a chance, chance two is really not a chance (20percent means it ain’t gonna happen, and even if it does it’s little it doesn’t matter), and chance three Gary’s covered himself (It may happen, but it many not as he says).

  7. Terry January 28, 2018 at 10:40 am - Reply
    • HEAT MISER January 28, 2018 at 10:42 am - Reply

      Terry…too bad models a week out are almost always wrong about snow for KC huh?

      • Terry January 28, 2018 at 11:03 am - Reply

        So Gary saying in his comment to someone saying it’s not going to happen that it’s problely not going to happen that has a 2 to 4 inch snowstorm the lastest GFS not going to happen next weekend. He said more like dusting to an 1 inch ? So dose that mean hes right or not saying this one week out to ?

        • Terry January 28, 2018 at 11:10 am - Reply

          Sorry Not trying to be rude Gary just wondering about this Question ?

        • Joe January 28, 2018 at 4:21 pm - Reply


  8. HEAT MISER January 28, 2018 at 10:41 am - Reply

    LOL…so chances one and two aint gonna happen (that;s what 20 percent chance means), and even if they did its so little it doesn’t matter), and chace # 3 Gary has fully inoculated himself for by saying it could happen or it could not happen.

    • Gary January 28, 2018 at 10:43 am - Reply

      It should happen, this is the problem Heat Miser. But, this pattern is finding a way to miss KC every time, but we are not even close to being Amarillo, TX. They are ZERO for every storm. NO rain or snow in 106 days.

      WOW! So, yes it could or it could not, but it should. It is really tough for many of us, but I bumped into some people who work outside for a living and they are happy with no snow.


  9. Terry January 28, 2018 at 10:48 am - Reply

    GFS 12 z model run dose look good to me for some good Snow on Sunday the 4th of Feb.

    • Kurt January 28, 2018 at 10:52 am - Reply

      Terry that’s 8 days away, not a guarantee at all. Already trending less with each run, we probably won’t know until Friday if this has any potential.

      • Terry January 28, 2018 at 11:07 am - Reply

        But we can say that yet . I’m right or wrong ? We’re still 7 days out on saying it’s not going to happen ? Just the same as saying the models are wrong .

        • Kurt January 28, 2018 at 11:27 am - Reply

          Terry, I didn’t say the models were wrong. There is something there, but a very good possibility the outcome is wrong. A few locations may seem 3 to 5 inches of snow next Sunday, but no way to know 8 days ahead which exact location.

          Given the history of this lrc it’s probable that the system will come out weaker and disorganized with most of us getting the same dusting to two inches.

          • Adam January 28, 2018 at 6:17 pm - Reply

            It’s also coming from the NW. Those don’t tend to be big snows for us.

        • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 6:44 pm - Reply

          POOF pOOf, PooF, pOof, poOf, POOF!!!

  10. Adam January 28, 2018 at 11:09 am - Reply

    I don’t know why anyone is/was buying into the GFS showing any sort of significant cold. The Euro has absolutely nothing, and the GFS has been overdoing cold and snow in the medium/long range all winter long.

    Again, you do not get significant snowfall from a storm diving in from the the NW. It will lack moisture forever and always.

    It’s a dusting to MAYBE 2 inch storm. That’s it, and probably closer to that dusting than 2 inches.

    • Adam January 28, 2018 at 6:18 pm - Reply

      Just read my doppleganger’s comment, that’s you, I agree.

  11. Adam January 28, 2018 at 11:10 am - Reply

    Meant to say significant *snow

  12. Dan T January 28, 2018 at 11:49 am - Reply

    So, 0-2 so far on this system for February 4? Could the jet stream reaching its peak strength cause the storm to dig more and give us a decent snow event? If we go 0-3 on this storm- ok this seems to happen all the time. However- seasonal differences could be enough to give us something exciting for a change. Will be fun to study and watch whatever happens.

    • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 1:07 pm - Reply

      0-3 = strikeout!!!!

  13. Carl January 28, 2018 at 1:11 pm - Reply

    Lots of negativity on here today. I seem to recall a 48″ snow storm back in early February, 2011 that started taking shape very similar to the Feb 4th storm is predicted. They didn’t adjust their focasts until 48 hours before.

    • f00dl3 January 28, 2018 at 1:34 pm - Reply

      We’ve never had a 48″ snow storm. Maybe you mean 4-8″?

      Either way – it’s really hard not to be negative. In fact, it’s more just plain realistic not negative at all. The way this year has been models have always been forecasting tremendous amounts of snow around 7-14 days out. The Black Friday storm, the Christmas blizzard that 10 days before Christmas was supposed to dump 38-44″ of snowfall on the I-435 loop….

      A trend is a trend. The trend all year has been for the models to grossly overdo snowfall 7-10 days out, and when we get within 2-3 days models show nothing to 1″.

      • Carl January 28, 2018 at 4:55 pm - Reply

        In Columbia we had a major snow storm 48″ the first week on Feb in 2011. I was snowed in at a conference. It certainly happened

        • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 7:07 pm - Reply

          Carl, it was not 48 inches!! It was between 17-18 inches…..

      • Troy Newman January 28, 2018 at 5:01 pm - Reply

        I would love to see a study on how much precipitation a model like the GFS gives over a 10 day period and what actually occurs. It seems like we have less than predicted a vast majority of the time and it leads people to believe we are having bad luck or being missed. In reality it was never going to happen anyway we just where looking at model runs with snow or rain totals that are high. Even in NE where they got hit by the last one a lot of spots had only 2-5″ where it was predicted they would see 12-18″ by several models. Its not surprising because an 18″ snow storm borders on one of the largest on record in this part of the world. Now no doubt our current drought (rain and snow) is something unusual as we can see it in historical records. I try not to get negative even when the weather is dry ( I don’t like dry weather like most on here) because we live in an area that has periodic drought. I can either be upset or realize its just something that is going to happen from time to time. As my old neighbor used to say “Every drought I can remember ended with a nice rain”

    • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 6:45 pm - Reply

      Give it up Carl, ain’t happening….

      • Tdogg January 28, 2018 at 8:09 pm - Reply

        Hey lay off Carl. He’s still digging out of that 48” snow from like 5 years ago lol!

        • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 9:02 pm - Reply

          Ok, I’ll cut Carl some slack, but just a little…..

  14. Carl January 28, 2018 at 1:17 pm - Reply


    I’m an ecologist by education and career. Looking at predictability in agriculture, recent research is showing some evidence that it may be possible that coventinal farming practices, along with tile drainage increasing the amount of runoff and reducing the amount of wanted infiltration has potential broken our water cycle. In a nutshell, bare soil with low water infiltration increases soil temperature reduces the amount of evaporation and moisture to continue to feed the cycle. In other words, were creating our own droughts or at least disrupted the quantity and frequency in which we receive our moisture.


    • Gary January 28, 2018 at 4:33 pm - Reply


      Very interesting, but it is still the weather conditions that will be the most dominant factor on whether or not drought conditions develop. These thoughts of yours are still valid and are a smaller factor.

      And, bloggers, it looks like we are heading into the strikeout. The pattern is set up for a decent snow next weekend, but this pattern is consistent and I am not expecting a good trend here. The trend is already bad. I hope I am wrong.


      • Terry January 28, 2018 at 5:20 pm - Reply

        Gary why would you say its looks like where heading in a strike out on next weekend snow chance ? Why so much Negative talk and you would say your self we still have alot of time for this to change in the model runs because where still or 7 days out and on the latest GFS 18z run on hour 156 to me it looks like the Low digs more south is that good sign ? I’m i right ? Why Negative talk no chances not more positive talk ? I try to stay Positive.

        • Gary January 28, 2018 at 5:38 pm - Reply


          I am just being realistic. There is already a trend towards the Euro models no snow output. And, since we have been through almost four full months of this years cycling pattern, I am just being realistic as it is staring us in the face. I hope it sets up better, but the trend is not our friend right now……..again.


      • HEAT MISER January 28, 2018 at 7:39 pm - Reply

        sick of it Gary…how about you just let us know when you DO expect some snow.

    • Troy Newman January 28, 2018 at 4:51 pm - Reply


      I do think there is risk to the environment where they install tile drains (more corn belt states like MN and IA). Its not causing drought but rather flooding as the natural cycle of water percolating through wetlands into groundwater is being replaced by massive runoff into rivers and streams from underground pipe. This increases river flooding and reduces soil and water quality.

      As far as drought goes I don’t think think we are having any more drought than any other time in history. In fact while this year has been disappointing at my location as far as total precipitation there where good crops because it was cool in August and wet before that. We have not had a real crop failure since the 2000-03 dry period. I think the biggest risk here is soil quality due to years of erosion as it takes a very long time to replace what has been lost once its gone. I have looked at and graphed many different weather variables over 120 years and I cannot see that the weather out here has made any significant change over that time.

      I have heard people blame the dust bowl on farming but I think that is only part of it. The dust wasn’t caused by trying to farm an arid region where we shouldn’t have tilled the ground but the weather was not caused by farming practices. It was just something bound to happen and when it did it really made a mess because of what had been done to the land.

  15. KS Jones January 28, 2018 at 1:19 pm - Reply

    I think the piece that Carl posted this morning is fairly accurate.
    Incidentally, we still have snowdrifts lingering around from Monday’s snowstorm, and one of them is about 100′ long and 3′ wide.
    Now, back to Carl’s message:

    Carl January 28, 2018 at 9:07 am

  16. Mr. Pete January 28, 2018 at 3:50 pm - Reply

    So is it going to snow tonight?

    • Gary January 28, 2018 at 4:31 pm - Reply


  17. Richard January 28, 2018 at 4:35 pm - Reply

    Fun facts KC for January 28

    Jan 28, 2016 hit 73 degrees.

    Jan 28, 2013 hit an all-time record high for any day in January ..76 degrees. 9 degrees higher than what was forecast. The next day we plunged into the 20s.

  18. Richard January 28, 2018 at 4:49 pm - Reply

    So what Jeff said about Thursday is odd
    “This is our second chance of snow as colder air heads back south. Right now it looks like this snow will stay across southern Missouri, missing KC”

    It is our second chance but it will miss KC.
    So, really it is not our second chance at all.

    Lets get on with Spring. How many weeks until DST ?

    • sedsinkc January 28, 2018 at 5:17 pm - Reply

      Five weeks.

      • Richard January 28, 2018 at 6:49 pm - Reply

        And 2 weeks until Spring training !
        Royals lost a good one in Cain, but signed Escobar. Hosmer still a question mark.

  19. Dave in LS January 28, 2018 at 4:54 pm - Reply

    Man look at all that moisture in the southeast. We need that here, just an all day soaking rain. I guess with this pattern that’s to much to ask 😂😢

  20. MattinLeavenworth January 28, 2018 at 4:56 pm - Reply

    There are little tiny snow nuggets falling lightly here in leavenworth county a few miles west of leavenworth proper. I can see the sun setting to the wet but there are what looks to be low hanging dark and white clouds just almost above me.

  21. MattinLeavenworth January 28, 2018 at 5:03 pm - Reply

    Well nevermind that only lasted a few minutes and now the sun is shining

  22. sedsinkc January 28, 2018 at 5:15 pm - Reply

    Snow lovers, win the lottery and move to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. They have now reached 22 FEET of snow this winter. They average 459 inches of snow each winter. And there are snow bunnies there.

    • Troy Newman January 28, 2018 at 5:47 pm - Reply

      Interesting. We visited Crater Lake in Oregon a few years back in June. We started taking pictures when we saw some snow on the ground going up. We could have saved time and waited because up at the gift shop there was still 3′ of snow on the ground. The road that goes around the lake was still closed and often is only open in August. They average somewhere in that 500 inch per year range. I don’t know that anybody is up there in the winter but I imagine snow would get pretty old at that rate.

  23. sedsinkc January 28, 2018 at 5:20 pm - Reply

    My winter forecast looks very good so far, almost 2/3 thru climatological winter. I predicted near average temps due to large temperature swings between cold and warm, check. Predicted below average precipitation, check. Below average snowfall, check. One more month for it to go off the rails, tho snowfall totals don’t end until the snow does even if it’s May. I predicted 12 to 14 inches, but if you make me pick one number I’ll split them and say 13 inches. That one could be in serious jeopardy.

    • Gary January 28, 2018 at 5:36 pm - Reply

      It sounds like you have made a great prediction. But, let’s let it play out. Mine was similar with one big exception, I really thought that with the cold blasts there would be enough set ups for two to four significant snows. And, here we are and we are waiting for our first one, four years of waiting.


  24. David January 28, 2018 at 5:45 pm - Reply

    This pattern is horrible. The latest 18z run for GFS is trending very dry…

    • Anonymous January 28, 2018 at 7:21 pm - Reply

      It’s not dry at all .

  25. Richard January 28, 2018 at 6:39 pm - Reply

    From JoCo KSate research and extension :

    ” Daffodils are starting to emerge in KC. Research has shown that the best time to fertilize spring flowering bulbs is when the foliage emerges. Some of us were out this weekend in our own gardens giving our daffs a light top dressing, using a balanced fertilizer (10-10-10 or 13-13-13), working it into the soil and watering to prevent fertilizer burn. “

  26. Tdogg January 28, 2018 at 6:41 pm - Reply

    The only moisture we will get this winter is from the tears of the snowies 😉

  27. Phillip January 28, 2018 at 7:00 pm - Reply

    You guys really are starting to slip when it comes to predicting any type of weather… channel 5 might just be the most accurate these days

    • Bobbie January 28, 2018 at 7:33 pm - Reply

      They’ve won most accurate the last few years

      • Richard January 28, 2018 at 7:50 pm - Reply

        I think stations pay to be judged in that competition.

  28. Paul January 28, 2018 at 7:22 pm - Reply

    So, Thursday is a no go and next Sunday is iffy at best?

    • Bluetooth January 28, 2018 at 9:01 pm - Reply

      Paul, that’s correct. If you try to call a storm via models or Gary, you will get first, a poof alert and then, another swing and a missss!!!!

  29. Greg Rodina January 28, 2018 at 9:17 pm - Reply

    Jack Squat until further notice.

  30. Emaw January 28, 2018 at 9:35 pm - Reply


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