Amble’s Ramble

This evening you can expect thunderstorms to pop up just before sunset in areas of northeast Kansas and Northwest Missouri.  These initial storms will form well northwest of Kansas City so your evening plans should be good, just keep an eye out to the northwest for a possible stray shower or storm.  These storms will move into the Metro area well after dark arriving shortly after 10:00 PM.

Severe or not? Right now I don’t think there’s much of a severe threat. The two primary driving factors would be marginal surface temperatures and the lack of available moisture. Storms are formed when the air rises. There are a ton of ways to make the air at the surface rise into the cooler air aloft to form clouds. The faster you can make that air rise the stronger the storms will be. If the air is warm it will certainly rise. If that same warm air is loaded with humidity it will be lighter so it has a greater potential energy and will rise even faster (the quick reason for that is you replace Oxygen and Nitrogen with Oxygen and Hydrogen making the same volume of air lighter).Below you’ll see the threat for severe weather which is marginal. Today this means there’s a 5% risk for damaging winds and a 5% risk for large hail.  That’s pretty low on the threat scale.

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There are a bunch of determining factors as why today will be a less than desirable day for those who love severe weather. I’ll just focus on two. Number one the temperature will be a touch on the cool side. You can certainly have severe weather with highs in the lower 70s, especially in early April but highs closer to 80 degrees would be much better. You can add humidity to temperatures in the lower 70s to add that extra buoyancy but that is sorely lacking today with dew point temperatures in the upper 40s. Simple fact is there just isn’t enough “octane” in our fuel today. The engine is there with a cold front and dry line in place to spark the storms and they will generate storms  this evening but by the time those storms reach Kansas City their bite will be less than their bark.

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