Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wichita, KS

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FXUS63 KICT 231725
AFDICT

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Wichita KS
1225 PM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017

.SHORT TERM...(Today through Saturday night)
Issued at 304 AM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017

Lots of low stratus clouds associated with the low level moisture
return across most of the forecast area, but stratus and mixy low
layers has kept any drizzle at bey.  Seeing signs of some very light
radar returns in south central KS which may suggest some patchy
drizzle, so plan on leaving a drizzle mention in until late this
morning.

Expect the start to a rather active period today, with a progressive
pattern leading to a series of shortwaves beginning to come across
the srn Rockies and into the plains.  The first such shortwave is
expected to move out into the plains this evening, with a low
pressure area developing over ern CO.  This low will deepen rapidly
as the afternoon progresses, with the pressure gradient east of the
low, expected to tighten considerably late this afternoon into this
evening. This will lead to strong southerly winds increasing to 30
mph with some gusts to near 50 mph for areas west of I-135. So plan
on issuing a wind advisory for wrn sections of the forecast area.
Could even see some of the strongest winds during the evening hours,
so plan keeping the wind advisory in effect until late this evening.
The winds will also lead to an elevated grassland fire risk in
Central KS (see the fire weather section below).

Expect showers/thunderstorms to develop along a dryline expected to
be associated with the low, across wrn KS by late this afternoon
into this evening. Current model trends suggest that this dryline
may set up a little further east than previously thought, which may
lead to some of this storm activity making its way into Central KS
by this evening. Bulk shear around 40-45 kts and MLCAPE values
possibly as high as 1000 j/kg, suggests a few strong to severe
storms may be possible across Central KS, with large hail and
damaging winds the main concern. So will add this mention to the
hazardous weather outlook.

Models show the main shortwave deepening and becoming vertically
stacked as it moves across the plains by Fri am. Expect to see some
scattered showers and storms ahead of the dryline across wrn
sections of the forecast area into Fri morning.  Latest model
solutions suggest that the surface low will be more progressive and
further north than previously thought. Current thinking now, is that
the prominent dryline and dry slot will blast east across most of
the forecast during the morning hours, reaching the Flint Hills by
noon on Fri. Still expect showers and thunderstorms to develop along
this dryline as afternoon heating increases for areas across SE KS,
with most of the area (behind the dryline) seeing partly sunny skies
until the wraparound showers associated with the backside of the low
moves into Central KS.  Depth of moisture/instability along the
dryline will be questionable/lacking for a widespread severe weather
threat on Fri, but strong bulk shear near 80 kts may lead to some
low topped linear strong/severe storms with hail up to quarter sized
and damaging downburst winds the main concern. Basically a high
shear/low instability severe chance for most of ern KS into Fri
evening.

Steep lapse rates underneath the main upper low may lead to some low
topped storms developing underneath the cold core late Fri afternoon
into Fri evening. This could produce a strong storm or two as it
moves across most of the area.

The main surface low will fill as it moves east into ern KS and wrn
MO, late Fri night or early on Sat, with wrap around showers to the
north of the low moving across most of the area thru Sat morning.

Ketcham

.LONG TERM...(Sunday through Wednesday)
Issued at 304 AM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017

Next shortwave will be "hot on the heels" of the Fri system, with
this system expected to move out into the plains on Sun.  A surface
low is expected to develop across SE CO and track straight east
along or just south of the KS/OK border by Sun afternoon/evening.
Moisture quality is actually a little better with this system, with
instability/directional shear suggesting a strong/severe weather
threat for south central KS for Sun. (Surface winds possibly out of
the SE also even suggest a small tornado threat along the KS/OK
border).  Moisture return with this system also suggests a better
chance of widespread showers for most of southern KS

Beginning of the week looks like continued chances for off and on
shower and storm chances as low level moisture remains across the
area, with the progressive flow leading to areas of low pressure
moving rapidly across the plains. After a lull on Tue and Wed,
showers look to return for the end of the week.

Ketcham

&&

.AVIATION...(For the 18Z TAFS through 18Z Friday afternoon)
Issued at 1218 PM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017

Main aviation concerns will be MVFR ceilings and strong south
winds.

Strong shortwave is currently tracking over the desert southwest
and will continue tracking out into the Plains tonight into Fri.
Surface low pressure will continue to deepen over far western KS
tonight which will keep strong south winds in place overnight.
Gusts to 40 mph will be possible at most sites through the
evening hours. The MVFR ceilings for areas along and west of I-135
have been slow to clear so far today and will likely remain in
place for at least the next few hours. Confidence in storm chances
are too low at this time to insert into TAFs with the better
chances today staying west of the forecast area.

&&

.FIRE WEATHER...
Issued at 304 AM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017

A very high to extreme grassland fire danger returns to the region
today and Fri as a strong low pressure area and gusty south winds
move into the plains. The greatest potential for extreme/elevated
fire risk will be over Central KS for this afternoon through this
evening.  So a Red Flag warning has been issued for portions of
Central KS.

Dry relative humidity levels will move across the area on Fri
afternoon as a dryline pushes east with a wind shift to the west.
This will lead to a very high to possibly extreme grassland fire
danger for areas along the KS Turnpike on Fri.

&&

.PRELIMINARY POINT TEMPS/POPS...
Wichita-KICT    77  59  75  46 /  20  20  40  50
Hutchinson      77  58  73  44 /  20  20  40  40
Newton          77  58  72  44 /  20  20  40  50
ElDorado        77  59  73  46 /  20  20  40  50
Winfield-KWLD   77  59  74  47 /  20  20  30  40
Russell         81  55  67  40 /  20  30  40  30
Great Bend      80  55  69  40 /  20  30  30  30
Salina          80  59  75  44 /  20  30  40  40
McPherson       78  57  73  43 /  20  20  40  40
Coffeyville     78  60  73  50 /  10  10  70  40
Chanute         78  60  73  49 /  20  10  70  60
Iola            77  59  72  49 /  20   0  70  60
Parsons-KPPF    78  61  73  49 /  10  10  70  50

&&

.ICT WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
Red Flag Warning until 11 PM CDT this evening for KSZ032-033-
047>053-067>072-083.

Wind Advisory until 11 PM CDT this evening for KSZ032-033-
047>051-067-068-082-083-091-092.

&&

$$

SHORT TERM...Ketcham
LONG TERM...Ketcham
AVIATION...RBL
FIRE WEATHER...Ketcham



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