Sunday, April 30, 2017

Taney County Work week 1!


A big improvement in weather conditions will be had Monday as the upper low lifts off to the northeast. The dry weather will persist into Tuesday, but the dry spell will not last long.

Rain and scattered storms should be ongoing once again through the day Wednesday and continue into early Thursday morning. Current expectations with this system will be for an additional 1-3 inches of rainfall. There is some indication that the frontal lift will act to enhance the QPF where CAPE is limited. This will allow for some embedded thunderstorms which may produce rainfall rates in excess of an inch per hour at times.

Despite the expectation of more strati-form rainfall with this system, the antecedent saturated soil conditions, ongoing flooding and terrain effects across the Ozarks would bring the potential for flash flooding to occur. As a result a Flash Flood Watch will be issued for all of the Missouri Ozarks and extreme southeastern Kansas from 06z Wednesday through 12z Thursday.

A cooler weather pattern will set up for late week as the region comes under the influence of a northwesterly flow aloft in the wake of the deepening upper level trough.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Bull Shoals to flood?

Forsyth Mo. - It's late April in 2017 and once again heavy rains were threatening to inundate two local parks; Shadow Rock and River Run!

After getting doused with over three inches of rainfall recently, there is a strong likelihood that we will be positively drenched during the last weekend of the an otherwise nice spring month! The national Weather Service is predicting as much as eight inches over a broad area of the southwest Missouri watershed and that typically spells trouble for some people who live near the Tri-Lakes water way.

If Bull Shoals lake gets much over 675 feet MSL, both River Run and nearby Shadow Rock Parks will likely close up for the balance of the summer and even possibly for the entire summer season. Should that happen, a number of things will be negatively impacted including; local convenience stores, area campers, planned outdoor park events and revenue for the City of Forsyth!

As of April the 27th, the lake level at Bull Shoals was at 664.36 feet. If the rains come as predicted, that level would surely grow and both reservoirs (Beaver and Table Rock) are at full capacity. That combined with saturated soils would mean that most any water that fell would be dumped downstream where it would back up at the Arkansas border where the Bull Shoals dam is located.

Should we all start building Arks?

Taney County MO. - After a recent spate of heavy rainfall that dropped three and three quarters of rain or more over our area, the National Weather Service is calling for yet another round starting on Friday, April 28! Should this occur in the manner shown in the above graphic, it would definitely impact the upper reservoirs of the chain of three large lakes that form Beaver, Table Rock and Bull Shoals. (The short strip of water known as Taneycomo which connects both Table Rock and Bull Shoals could also be severely impacted if rainfalls meet or exceed the forecast amounts).

As of April the 27th, Beaver Lake that form the headwaters of the chain, was already at 1,125.98 feet which was above the full pool level of 1,121.0 feet! Note that the graphic shows a chance for rain potential to be over 10 inches. That much water falling on an already water soaked watershed would be immediately dumped into the lake with little in the way of absorption. This extra water would then be released at the dam into Table Rock lake which would also be 'under the gun' so to speak. Without going into too much detail, that's one heck of a lot of water that will be headed somewhere in a hurry! Remembering that while the system can easily handle such a load, the real problems would arise out of just how fast the whole system is impacted. Too much rain all at once would simply overload the whole smear...

Having stated all that, remember that what is forecast to happen and what actually happens can be worlds apart. Also, please note that this post constitutes the musing of an old fart with no formal training in the weather what so ever.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Taney County Work week four!

The start of the work week will feature dry conditions and a warming trend. Highs by Tuesday should warm back into the upper 70's.


Models then bring a storm system out into the central U.S. From Tuesday night into Wednesday. A fair amount of spread remains regarding the eventual track of the surface low associated with this system. Some models track it along the Missouri/Arkansas border while others have it moving east across central Missouri.

It does look like an elevated mixed layer (EML) will advect over the region ahead of this system with Gulf of Mexico moisture returning northward into the region. This should lead to moderate amounts of instability (especially over southern Missouri) as the system arrives Tuesday night. Deep layer shear will also be supportive of organized convection.

One of the bigger questions to answer is whether or not convection can fire along or ahead of an incoming cold front given that a decent capping inversion will be in place. It is quite possible that thunderstorms may be slightly post-frontal. Regardless, CAPE/shear profiles alone are supportive of at least a limited risk for strong to severe storms for Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.

This system looks as if it will be fairly progressive moving through. However, a widespread one to two inch rainfall is quite possible across the region. With streams and rivers already high, this may lead to some hydro concerns.


We may then see another day or two of quiet weather behind the midweek system before active weather returns by next weekend. Global models continue to indicate a large scale setup that would favor more heavy rainfall and the potential for strong to severe storms. Details regarding these potential hazards will become clearer throughout the upcoming week.


Confidence in a flooding event has therefore become high enough to post a Flash Flood Watch (will be out by 4 AM) for all of the Missouri Ozarks and extreme Southeastern Kansas from Friday night through Sunday. Widespread storm total amounts are still expected to be in the 3-6" range, but with a caveat. With convective elements in play for the duration of the event, locally higher amounts are quite likely (in the 8" plus range). It is still a bit early to nail down where the heaviest rain will fall.

Not to be outdone, the potential for severe storms will also be present with this setup starting as early as Friday night. South of that strengthening front, moderate amounts of instability will be present with sufficient deep layer shear for strong to severe storms. If supercells can develop, large hail to the size of golf balls would be possible. The tornado threat will have to be monitored as super cell motions would tend to parallel the front. Even north of the front, elevated hailers will be possible.

The key to the severe potential Friday night will be where that front sets up. The NAM has it draped across south-central Missouri with the ECMWF a bit farther north. In contrast, the GFS keeps it just south of the Arkansas border. We are leaning towards that front at least making it as far north as southern Missouri. The severe threat would then continue into Saturday, especially along and south of where that front sets up.

The main upper level support for this system will then pull through the region from Sunday into Sunday night. The main shower/thunderstorm threat should begin to diminish later in the day on Sunday, however some light wrap-around precipitation will remain possible into Sunday night or even Monday.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Easter Sunday brings much needed rainfall!

Forsyth MO. - I arose early (for me) on an Easter Sunday in 2017 to see that the skies had darkened with the local radar showing a real good chance for significant rainfall. Much of southwest Missouri, where I call home has been in a mini drought for over a year and any rainfall would be much appreciated!

Halfway through the month of April and my rain gauge showed just .39 of an inch total! [See for more stats!] That sort of trend had been playing out for all of 2016 and seemed to be continuing. This is the peak start of the growing season and what with the problems of too much rainfall in southern California, vegetable prices had risen sharply. We really needed a good growing season here in the Midwest to help offset the losses out west!

After an initial quick third of an inch, a rain shield progressed through the area bringing the total to half an inch by mid morning! And there was more good news as the NWS was projecting unsettled weather to continue through the following weekend!

By 11:30 AM CST - the rain was pretty much done. I recorded .55 of an inch and even that, when added to the graph at right, show us with a way to go to catch up to an estimated 7 inch yearly deficit!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Taney County work week three in April!


Yawn! One would think we would have seen a bit more in the rain gauge by this point! A drier and more stable air mass will spread into the region by Monday, suppressing most of the thunderstorm activity into Arkansas. Highs on Monday will warm into the low to mid 70s. Double yawn...


Wednesday is expected to be warmer than normal, but otherwise quiet. Look for temps in the mid 80's! Yes, and it will be OK to wash those oh so dirty cars!


The main concern for this Thursday and Friday will heavy rain/flood potential late Thu night-Fri-Sat. Some severe storm potential is there depending on how/where a west-east frontal boundary sets up
Thu-Fri. Swell....

The front will continue to move south through the area Thursday with continued chances for showers/thunderstorms area wide at one time or another. Daytime heating will help boost cape/instability during the day Thursday with lots of shear energy present in spots. Shear that would be sufficient for organized storms. A veered surface wind will limit storm potential to hail/winds. Depending on which guidance you choose the timing for stronger storms in our area might be noon(ish) to mid afternoon before the front pushes south and east of the cwfa. The SPC marginal risk covers the area well.


There is good agreement on general large scale/synoptic scale features during this time. The front will stall south of the area over OK/AR Thu night as a shortwave/upper level jet digs southeast through the southern Rockies. A slow moving upper level closed low develops near the CO/KS/OK Panhandle region by midday Fri with multiple lead impulses ahead of the main low. Increasingly more numerous and heavier showers will begin to develop late Thu night and continue Fri as waves of showers move through with the small scale upper level disturbances. Periods of heavy showers will continue Fri-Fri night-early Sat until the upper low moves overhead on Sat. Blended guidance utilized by our forecast database shows a solid 2-4 inch storm total rainfall across the area with highest amounts over southeast KS and the southwest corner of MO. The bottom line is that this type of rainfall over a large area will produce widespread flooding as early as late Thu night, but certainly Fri and through the weekend. Creeks, rivers, low water crossings, poor drainage and urban areas will all be vulnerable to flooding.

On paper, the severe storm risk looks minimal day 3/Fri, but will have to watch where the surface front to our south sets up.

On into Saturday, a closed off low develops and impacts the region with widespread rainfall. This system will also bring much cooler temperatures to the area with lows in the 40's and 50's over
the upcoming weekend.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Climate for April thru June!

Taney County MO. - According to the NOAA Climate prediction center, temperatures for our neck of the woods will be warmer than normal with less than normal rainfall April through the month of June. And while the predictions for the Summer period July through September are not yet out, I'd say it was a safe bet to call for more of the same!

April work week two in Taney County!


A front will slowly track east and will start to spread east of Highway 65 by Monday afternoon. With the heating of the day instability will increase. The cap will hold into early this afternoon, but should start to weaken later this afternoon into early this evening across the eastern Ozarks. As this occurs expected showers and storms to develop generally along and east of a Branson to Rolla MO line with the best potential/coverage of showers and storms to occur across south central MO on to the south and east.

There may be enough instability for a few strong to marginally severe storms later in the afternoon hours with hail to the size of quarters being the main risk. There could also be some isolated damaging wind gusts with the strongest storms. The storms will push south and east of the area by late this evening.

The cold front will switch winds to the northwest behind the front, but the colder air associated with this system will lag behind closer to the upper level low. As a result temperatures in the middle to upper 70's should occur this afternoon. A drier air mass will spread into the area behind the front and will lead to an elevated fire risk across extreme southeastern Kansas and far western Missouri where the dry air will spread in the first.


Surface high pressure and a slightly cooler air mass will spread over the region Tuesday. Highs Tuesday afternoon will be in the middle to upper 60's. The area of high pressure will spread east on
Wednesday allowing highs in the 70's to occur each afternoon through the rest of the week and weekend. [I can live with that]!


An upper level disturbance will track through the region Wednesday night into Thursday bringing shower and storm chances to the area. Another disturbance will then track into the area Friday into the start of the weekend bringing additional showers and storm chances to the area. Showers and storms will then be possible again late this weekend into the start of next week as a more active weather pattern will be in place across the area.


Saturday will be very warm and breezy with highs in the low 80's possible in some locations. A cold front will drop south into the area late Saturday night with showers and thunderstorms. While an isolated strong to severe storm will be possible across SE Kansas and Western Missouri, the main hazards will be lightning and locally heavy rainfall.

The front looks to linger across southern Missouri Sunday afternoon. Sufficient instability and wind shear will exist creating a isolated severe storm threat. Locally heavy rainfall will be possible as well. An increasing low level jet impeding on this front Sunday night may contribute to an additional round of showers and storms lasting into Monday.

Models insist that our area will remain in a west to southwest mid level flow next week however they do diverge with the placement of a system coming out of the Rockies beginning Tuesday. GFS is much further south than the ECMWF with the Canadian being the middle of the road. This will be a potent little system to watch as the Gulf of Mexico will be wide open. Additional chances of precip are possible next week given this active pattern. Temps will also remain mild.