Category Archives: Cold

Record lows around Kansas – but not Wichita

“Two measly degrees.”

That’s how close Wichita came to setting a record low temperature Tuesday morning. The reading of 27 didn’t quite reach the record of 25 set in 1983, according to Vanessa Pearce, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Wichita.

But records fell around the state.

Russell dropped to 19, obliterating the old record of 26 in 1983. Salina got down to 22, bettering the mark of 23 set in 1936. Chanute fell to 23, topping the old mark of 24 set in 1928.

More records may have been broken, Pearce said, but those won’t be confirmed until official data comes in later today.

Bitter cold arrives tonight

A robust arctic front will bring bitterly cold temperatures and wind chills to Kansas tonight and tomorrow.

Here’s a graphic produced by the Wichita branch of the National Weather Service:

WindChills012314

A wind chill advisory is in effect from midnight tonight until 11 a.m. Thursday for more than 90 counties in Kansas, including the Wichita metropolitan area. Lows will dip close to or below 0 in the region by dawn Thursday, said Suzanne Fortin, meteorologist in charge of the branch. Wind chills will be as low as -15 in Wichita and colder north of the metropolitan area.

“It’s going to be a really cold early start (to the day) and then not warming up too much,” Fortin said.

Highs will top out in the upper teens in Wichita. Temperatures will slide back into the single digits early Friday morning, but Fortin said a wind shift to the south will allow Friday’s highs to recover into the 30s.

Polar vortexes are nothing new

We heard an awful lot about the polar vortex that brought brutally cold air and record low temperatures to much of the nation earlier this month.

Many people were talking as if this was something new and virtually unheard of – but it’s not, as this graphic put together by the New York City branch of the National Weather Service explains.

polarvortexgraphic

Winter weather advisory goes into effect at 6 p.m.

A winter weather advisory for the Wichita area goes into effect at 6 p.m. today and continues until 6 p.m. Friday.

Light rain should transition into a wintry mix late this afternoon, National Weather Service meteorologist Scott Smith said.

“It could be around the drive time,” Smith said.

Forecasters aren’t expecting heavy freezing rain, but “just a little bit can cause headaches,” he said. “Bridges and overpasses, that’s still going to be a problem.”

The wintry mix will continue into the overnight hours, then take a break until shortly before daybreak Friday.

“The morning commute could be a little dicy,” Smith said.

Freezing rain, sleet, ice pellets, snow – “It looks like it’s going to be a little bit of everything,” he said.

Highs won’t reach freezing on Friday and will not climb out of the 30s until early next week.

Blustery north winds will be a constant, gusting to more than 30 miles an hour throughout the period.

Wichita reached its high temperature for Monday at………noon??

Well, actually, it was a few minutes after that, according to the National Weather Service.

But then the cold front arrived at about 2 p.m. and the temperature dove about 7 degrees in 15 minutes. Tonight’s low could bottom out at about 20, and Tuesday’s highs won’t reach 40.

Bundle up!

“You know you live in Kansas…”

…when you have to run the furnace and the air conditioner on the same day.”

Comment on the Eagle’s “Opinion Line” on Oct. 23.

Frost advisory until 9 a.m. Saturday in Wichita

The National Weather Service has issued a frost advisory for 29 counties in southeast Kansas – including the Wichita metropolitan area – through Saturday’s early morning hours.

The advisory runs from 1 a.m. to 9 a.m. for all 26 counties in the Wichita branch’s coverage area and until 8 a.m. in Bourbon, Crawford and Cherokee counties along the Missouri border. Low temperatures are projected to fall to 30 degrees early Saturday morning.

Another 19 counties in central and western Kansas are under a hard freeze warning through mid-Saturday morning. The warning stretches from the Oklahoma line to I-70 and generally from the Pratt County line to the Colorado border. Temperatures are projected to fall as low as the mid-20s overnight.

Wichita escapes hard freeze

Gardeners – and wheat farmers – in the Wichita area can breathe a sigh of relief this morning.

The anticipated overnight freeze didn’t occur in south-central Kansas, forecasters say, thanks to stronger-than-expected winds and some convection that brought warmer temperatures aloft down to the ground’s surface.

That combination of factors kept temperatures in the mid- to upper 30s, said Vanessa Pearce, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

“It was a narrow band” of convection, Pearce said.

Narrow indeed: Great Bend dropped to 27 and Russell fell below freezing as well.

Lows tonight will stay well above freezing as well, though there’s still a slight chance of a few snow flurries.

Freeze warning for Wichita and surrounding area

The National Weather Service has issued a freeze warning for Friday morning that covers more than a dozen counties in central and southern Kansas, including the Wichita metropolitan area.

The warning is in effect from 1 a.m. to 9 a.m. Friday. Temperatures are expected to be at or below freezing through daybreak. The lowest temperatures, hovering around 28 degrees, are expected to be in the Flint Hills.

The freeze warning is for Russell, Lincoln, Barton, Ellsworth, Saline, Rice, McPherson, Marion, Reno, Harvey, Butler, Kingman, Sedgwick, Harper, Sumner and Cowley counties.

Among the cities included are Wichita, Hutchinson, Great Bend, Winfield, Salina, McPherson, Marion, Harper, Newton, El Dorado, Kingman, Wellington and Winfield.

Cold April cracks Top 10 in Wichita

April was so cold in Wichita it cracked the Top 10 for coldest Aprils in the city’s history.

The average temperature last month was 51.3 degrees, making it the 7th coolest April in Wichita since 1889, according to the National Weather Service. The normal April temperature in Wichita is 56.1 degrees. It hasn’t been this cold in Wichita since 1997, according to the weather service.

Chanute had its 6th coolest April since 1894. The average temperature of 52.4 degrees was more than 4 degrees below normal.