Increasing drought with the beginning of the meteorological autumn

It’s always a beautiful sight – a lonely thunderstorm sweeping across the Kansas prairie. Here is a shot that I took with our Colby SkyView Monday night, looking west towards Goodland. This storm also blows up quite a bit of debris as this part of the state is so dry.

Raindrops have been hard to come by as we wrap up our hot summer months and enter the meteorological fall on September 1st. We have increasing drought in the northwest and all of our central counties, including western Sedgwick County.

Lately we have been affected by a strong high pressure area in the south that is effectively baking us and turning off the tap, so to speak. Occasionally this would collapse and we would benefit from a brief reduction in heat and some rain that was not evenly distributed.

Wichita recorded 1.72 ″ of rain this month, which is 2.58 ″ below average. Goodland does poorly at just 0.82 ″ in August, 2.17 ″ below average. Dodge City is also below the norm, receiving only 1.22 “rain, which is 1.77” below that. Salina, however, is almost average at about half an inch across.

The chance of rain continues to look good even with a breakdown in our heated pattern later this week and over the Labor Day holiday weekend. Relief from this deepening drought does not yet look optimistic. In the next 8 to 14 days we will have below average rain probabilities in the entire Sunflower State.

–Lisa Teachman, chief meteorologist

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