High Plains Drifter

disclaimer:  "The meteorological views/forecast thinking expressed are those solely of the author of this blog
and do not necessarily represent those of official National Weather Service forecast products,
therefore read and enjoy at your own risk and edification!"

January 21, 2007

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [10]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 3:19 pm

. . .Dodge City ended up with 5 to 6" of snow. . .

The snow came to an end around 2 or 3 a.m. on the 21st.  I received maybe an additional quarter inch of snow after the last observation (blog post #9) for a total close to 6 inches.  Other spotter reports from around the Dodge City also indicate 5.5 to 6".  Here is a table of other storm total snow amounts from around Southwest Kansas (courtesy NWS-Dodge City):

 9      10S COLLYER         TREGO  
 9      11WNW ASHLAND       CLARK  
 9      DIGHTON 7W          LANE  
 8-9    ASHLAND             CLARK  
 9      GARDEN CITY         FINNEY  
 8      UTICA               NESS  
 8      PRATT               PRATT  
 8      INGALLS 11WSW       GRAY  
 7      LARNED              PAWNEE  
 7      MCCRACKEN           RUSH  
 7      SCOTT CITY 10SE     SCOTT  
 7      BEELER 3NW          NESS  
 7      HAVILAND 3SSW       KIOWA  
 7      BIG BOW 8N          STANTON  
6-7     DODGE CITY 1SW      FORD  
 6      DODGE CITY 5W       FORD  
 7      DODGE CITY 1N       FORD  
 6      ULYSSES 3NE         GRANT  
 6      DEERFIELD 11N       KEARNY  
 6      HUDSON 8N           STAFFORD  
 6      DODGE CITY 2N       FORD  
 6      HICKOK 5NE          GRANT  
 6      SUBLETTE 7N         HASKELL  
 6      HANSTON 4NE         HODGEMAN  
 6      DODGE CITY 10 WNW   FORD  
 6      LIBERAL 9E          SEWARD  
 6      GREENSBURG 3N       KIOWA  
 6      COLDWATER 4NE       COMANCHE  
 6      SYRACUSE            HAMILTON  
5-7     TROUSDALE 1NE       EDWARDS  
 6      MEADE 15S           MEADE  
 6      HAYS                ELLIS  
5.5     DODGE CITY 2N       FORD  
 5      SUN CITY            BARBER  
 5      LIBERAL             SEWARD  
 5      ENSIGN 4NW          GRAY  
 5      SUBLETTE 11N        HASKELL  
 5      KISMET              SEWARD  
 5      HUGOTON 9S          STEVENS  
 4      MOSCOW 4NW          STEVENS  
 4      SAUNDERS 5S         STANTON  
 4      ELKHART 10 NW       MORTON  


January 20, 2007

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [9]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 11:49 pm

. . . 5.6" in my backyard as of 11:30pm . . . 

It is still snowing at about a 0.5" per hour rate right now with one narrow band still overhead.  This band weakened in narrowed some since 10:30pm, but the last couple of volume scans showed the band "beefing up" again just to the west-southwest.  Below is the radar image centered on Dodge City at 11:40pm:

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [8]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 10:32 pm

Heavy snow band over Dodge City with ~1.5"/hr snow rates.  A narrow band of 30 dBZ echoes are over Dodge City at 10:30pm CST… this will certainly add another inch given the movement of this band…such that it will almost train over Dodge for at least a half hour, and perhaps quite a bit longer… we’ll see.  I’ll go out and make another snow measurement around midnight or so.  Below is the radar image showing the heavy band over Dodge:


Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [7]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 8:24 pm

Photo from outside my front door around 8:20pm CST:


Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [6]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 8:05 pm

. . . 4.4" in my backyard on the north side of Dodge . . .

Looking at radar, the vort max (or at least one of the smaller-scale vorts associated with the storm) was very near Hugoton.  There continues to be development to the southwest of Dodge City, so there is still opportunity to hit 6 or maybe 7" before all is said and done with this thing.  I’ll try to snap a quick grab photo out my front door.  Below is a radar image from Dodge City radar at around 8:00pm:


Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [5]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 4:28 pm

South wind and snow.  The most interesting aspect of this storm is the wind direction.  A south-southeast wind direction is uncommon for significant accumulating snows in Southwest Kansas.  In fact, the winds have gusted at times to 25 mph, creating drifts in not-so common areas.  Strong winds with snow in the high plains are almost always out of the north.  Below is a surface map valid 4pm CST 1/20:

Blue dotted line is approximate Snow-"mix" line.  Green line is roughly the "mix"-cold rain line. 
This storm has been a bust for Oklahoma City, where they were originally expecting 4-8" of snow.  They really haven’t seen a flake yet… mainly sleet and cold rain.  I’m glad I’m not down there for this storm!  This was a very difficult storm to predict, once again, for precipitation type in Oklahoma.

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [4]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 4:12 pm

. . . 3.0" in north Dodge City . . .

It’s halftime in the KU-Texas Tech basketball game, and I went out to measure… it’s right at 3 inches in my backyard.  We had a nice little burst that added about 1/2 to 1" early this afternoon… but it has since let up.  We are pretty much in the 500-400mb dry intrusion of this storm now, and the rest of the snow will be somewhat convective in nature (probably no thunder though)… so the snow will be more showery and hit-miss.  Will be watching the the healthy organized band in the TX Panhandle near the center of the mid level low…as this pivots northeastward and perhaps catches Dodge City.  A total in the 4 to 7" range seems plausible… 4" if we catch more holes… 7" if we hit more of the smaller bands and whatnot. 

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [3]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 10:41 am

Finally… the first 1" snow event in Dodge City…more on the way!  At work here, we have measured 1.5" as of 10:00am.  It started snowing around 5:30am, so we are averaging between one quarter and one half inch of snow per hour.  Looking at water vapor loop, the main upper low is still centered over southern New Mexico…and I expect us to be in ~0.5" per hour snowfall rates for much of the afternoon and this evening…. ending up with between 5 and 8" of total snow by early Sunday morning!  Will keep you posted…

January 19, 2007

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [2]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 10:15 pm

NAM model suggests 4-6" possible in Dodge City… we shall see.  Below are a couple graphics from the NAM model from the 00z/20th run (6pm CST 1/19).  

NAM model showing the northeastward ejection of a fairly compact upper low.  An optimal track for Dodge City to receive the brunt of the upward forcing for heavy snow would be very close to what this model is projecting in it’s 18 to 30 hour forecast. 

Here is the QPF (quantative precip forecast) off the same NAM model… a 48-hour storm total.  It is showing the 0.50" line north of Dodge City with the 0.75" inch line getting close to here.  A standard 1:10 ratio would mean 5 to 8" of snow.  

I still think the heaviest snow will be just southeast of Dodge City, but the slower movement of the storm is promising for longer duration of lift over Dodge City.  One thing seems fairly certain though, and that is precip type.  I am about 94% certain this will be all snow for us in Dodge City!  What little warm layer aloft there is… will be evaporatively cooled to below zero at the onset of the precipitation…and will remain below 0°C for the duration of the snow.  I am working a rare 4am to Noon overtime shift tomorrow, so that will be fun… I’ll have my camera with me at work to take a few snaps… of what should finally be the first adequate accumulating snow here in Dodge!

Southwest KS Snow Jan 20th [1]

Filed under: General Weather & Forecasting — Mike U @ 10:04 pm

The first 1" snow event for Dodge City finally?!? 

This has been a fairly awesome winter so far with a number of strong winter storms tracking across the central and southern Great Plains.  Most interesting, though, is that here in Dodge City, the total accumulation of snowfall from all these storms dating back to November 30th has been a whopping 1.3"!

The Dodge City Misses:

November 30th storm = 0.4" 
(parts of northern OK, southeastern KS, central MO received 12-18")

December 20-21st storm = 0.1" 
(the big Denver Blizzard with 20-30" of snow out there… rain and freezing rain in Dodge)

December 29-31st storm = 0.3" 
(the "Extreme Winter Storm" on the High Plains… major ice with major blizzard of 15-30" snow amounts in far western KS and southeastern CO)

January 13-14th storm = 0.4" 
(major sleet accumulations to the east and southeast of Dodge City… see map below)


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