The key weather risk today is one we’ve grown used to — and probably tired of — the wind. A wind advisory is in effect after 10am, and it upgrades to a high wind watch at 10pm. So wind goes from an inconvenience to the potential for damage, while a line of storms is expected to develop in western Kansas.
Wind and Fire Advisories
One item to note in this graphic: the High Wind Watch does not go into effect until this evening. The Wind Advisory covers the entire area show in the Watch through the daytime hours. The Watch may be upgraded to a Warning in some areas later today. Worst wind damage potential outside of thunderstorms is late evening and overnight.
Severe weather potential does exist today and tomorrow, but I believe the atmosphere is almost too dynamic for high-end severe weather. The current thinking is that a line will form in western Kansas, around US 83, this afternoon and push eastward. An extremely strong cap will be in place east of US 281, and this line is expected to die rapidly as it encounters this cap.
Tomorrow, a round of storms may develop around US 281 and push east with the dryline, but the risk of that is marginal. A better chance for storms develops mid-day around I-135 and pushes east through the afternoon as the cold front overtakes the dryline and becomes the main forcing mechanism.
The chance for supercellular thunderstorms, and hence tornadoes and very large hail, is low. There may be some brief spinups along the squall lines as they advance east, but they would be weak and short-lived. Hail is possible, but not likely to be in the tennis-ball and larger sizes with a squall line. Intense straight line wind is the main damage mode, and as you might imagine it will take quite a bit of wind from the west and southwest to push storms in to a region experiencing 65mph south to southeast wind ahead of the front.
The good news: after tomorrow things calm down. The bad news: along with the potential for damage, the gully-washer rains associated with a squall line may bring some flash flooding issues and won’t be able to be put to good use in the parched soil because the rain will come too fast to soak in.