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Mild, stormy pattern for the last half of March

After a round of cold weather from March 10th-15th, a milder weather pattern is shaping up for the last 2 weeks of March. Medium range forecast models are showing a “zonal” flow setting up through March. This means that the upper level winds will blow from west to east, sending upper level waves across the central U.S. periodically. This will increase our chance of rain as moisture is picked up from the south, running into colder air being drawn in behind the low pressure systems.

This pattern is favorable for severe storms to develop but depends on the exact track of the low pressure areas which won’t be pinned down until they develop. Since winds aloft are coming in from the Pacific ocean, temperatures overall will be mild. We’ll have warm days ahead of the storm systems followed by brief cooling.

Mid-Missouri is in a moderate to severe drought and rain is needed for the growing season. The precipitation outlook through the end of the month indicates we’ll have a slightly better chance of above normal rainfall. The 30 year average rainfall for March id 2.91″ and we are currently at 1.29″. Since January 1st we are 3 inches below average.

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