Staying mild & dry for Christmas Day – Nick

Watching some storm systems down the road as we head toward 2022

Good Friday evening, everyone. Hopefully, those of you that took part enjoyed your Christmas Eve. Mother Nature certainly didn’t make the weather frightful this time around. However, the south wind machine that was in action today was one for the record books. Even with partly sunny to mostly cloudy skies, the southerly wind at 15-25 (gusts near 38 mph at times) pushed highs to 75° at Joplin Regional today. Not only was that yet another day with above normal temperatures (19th of the month which you can see down below), that broke the record of 73° set back in 1955! Everyone else had highs in the middle 70s as well for today.


Looking at our weather setup, it’s pretty easy to see why we were so windy today. A couple of surface lows had no problem keeping the south wind in action across the area. In addition, we were in the warm sector ahead of an approaching cold front from the west. It kept us mostly cloudy this evening and even managed to bring a few light showers for parts of the area.


In addition to the front bringing in this evening’s clouds and few random showers, we saw that come together with assistance upstairs at the jet stream level. While we were clearly on the warmer side of the jet, an upper-level wave moving out of Colorado provided additional lift to bring in the clouds and few showers.


Fortunately for local travel and for Santa (with Rudolph leading the way), these rain chances won’t be an issue as we head into the overnight. Not only that, some of us will see partly cloudy skies sneak back in as we head toward sunrise on our Christmas morning. As we see the wind shift behind the passing front, we are expecting temperatures to drop as Christmas morning gets underway. While southwest Missouri and areas along the I-44 corridor will drop back into the 50s, some 40s are possible in southeast Kansas to start Saturday out.


While partly sunny skies will be nice for some to see as we go through the morning, we’ll see mostly cloudy skies work back in ahead of another wave out west for the afternoon. With the increasing clouds and a lighter breeze out of the west and northwest, we will turn a bit cooler for Saturday. However, it will still be mild with highs in the lower to middle 60s.


Looking beyond the Christmas holiday, you can see the next upper-level wave passing nearby as we work into Sunday. The day will start dry with scattered showers possible in the afternoon and evening under mostly cloudy skies. Despite the mostly cloudy skies, the south wind at 5-15 mph (gusts near 25) will send highs back near 70° to wrap up the holiday weekend.


After a quiet and chilly Monday with highs in the upper 50s, another system in Doug’s pattern will come in on Tuesday. With this system down below, you can see how it will give us a good chance for scattered showers and t-storms on Tuesday with highs in the upper 60s.


While we can’t rule out a stray shower on the back side of that system on Wednesday, the trend will call for partly sunny skies to return and much cooler air to return as well. Under partly sunny skies, we’ll top out in the lower to middle 40s on Wednesday after a cold start near the freezing mark. Thursday looks dry and partly sunny with highs in the middle 40s before we head into the New Year’s weekend. Friday (New Year’s Eve) looks dry under partly sunny skies and chilly with highs pushing back into the upper 50s. However, look at the upper-level setup for Friday down below.


Sticking with Doug’s pattern, that’s the system that wants to work in on New Year’s Day. Early indications show this system starting as rain chances Saturday afternoon before dropping temperatures for Saturday night could switch this over to some snow before we dry out on January 2nd. We’ll keep an eye on all of these systems as we work through the next several days.

Have a good night, a great Saturday and a Merry Christmas!


Next Saturday:  Chilly with rain chances during the afternoon. Dropping temperatures could switch things over to snow Saturday night before the system clears out.

Jan. 2nd-8th:  Mainly a cold week with rain or snow chances on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Jan. 9th-15th: Mild start with rain or snow chances Monday and Tuesday. Turning much colder for the rest of the week.

Jan. 16th-22nd: Mainly chilly for this week. Slight rain chances on Monday and Friday.