As expected, strong and damaging winds gusts have taken over Kansas. Wind gusts between 40 and 60 MPH and higher have been reported over the last 24 hours. Earlier this morning, Downtown Wichita had a peak wind gust of 58 MPH. A few reporting locations out west hit gusts greater than 70 MPH!
The cold front has moved on through and any moisture has been negligible. A few showers popped up this evening, giving us ominous looking skies and a few raindrops. This will not produce much and fade into the overnight.
The winds will continue to be the big weather story through the overnight and into Friday. The majority of our area has been upgraded to a High Wind Warning to account for this wind machine moving through the region.
We will also need to monitor for the potential for grass fires through Friday evening due to the winds and dry conditions. Fire Weather Warnings are in effect.
Winds will not start to back off until late Friday and truly won’t weaken until Friday night.
A piece of energy will reinforce clouds tonight and into Friday for about half of Kansas. Western communities will see more sunshine through tomorrow compared to points farther east. Some of our counties, including Dickinson, Geary, Morris, Lyon, Dickinson, Chase and Marion may see a few snow showers into Friday as this system pulls away. Any accumulation would be light. At most, a dusting to a half inch.
Temperatures are settling back into a more January-like rhythm. Highs Friday will be in the 30s under the clouds with the 40s in more of the sun. There is a weak disturbance over the weekend that might spark a sprinkle or a flurry along the Kansas/Colorado state line. I am not impressed. Clouds filter in for the rest of us. Another system looks to be a bit stronger next Monday night into Tuesday that may bring a better shot for rain/snow, but even then, will be a fast mover.
The last weekend of January still shows promise for an Arctic intrusion with the possibility of more moisture. Looks like our pattern gets more active to end out the month after our latest dry stretch.
–Chief Meteorologist Lisa Teachman