LJWorld.com weblogs Lawrence Weather Watch
Just why did it get so cold this morning
If you stepped out the door this morning, you probably noticed our morning lows were pretty chilly; freezing for some. Both Manhattan and Lawrence hit freezing this morning, and for Manhattan, the freezing temperatures were maintained for a few hours.
You’ll occasionally hear us mention Manhattan and Lawrence are typically cooler in the morning, due to the fact the official readings both come from airports which sit in a “valley.” Typically, you would see cooler temperatures in the valley. This is because the cool, dense air moves down slope at night.
Why so cold? The perfect ingredients for a cold night are clear skies and calm winds. This morning was the perfect example of this. We had clear skies across northeast Kansas; however winds this morning in Concordia ranged from 5 to 10 mph, which kept the morning lows from falling below 40 degrees. In Topeka, we had light to calm winds and our lows fell to 33. Similarly in Lawrence and Manhattan, the calm winds allowed the lows to dip right to that freezing mark.
Morning lows in these cases can be tricky to forecast. Last night models indicated winds would be around 5 to 15. If the winds were 5 to 15 mph as anticipated, Manhattan and Lawrence would have been similar to Concordia, a few degrees away from the freezing mark, but not quite there.