|A wintry mix of freezing rain, sleet and snow fell across North Central,
Northeast and East Central Kansas on January 25th and 26th. The
precipitation fell as mainly snow across North Central Kansas with reports
of 4 to 6 inches common (Figure 1).
Strong winds on the 26th caused near whiteout conditions as the snow blew
and drifted. (Click to Enlarge)
Figure 1 Snow depth reports through 7 am 1/27/2004
Freezing rain occurred across much of the area on January 25th. Ice
accumulations of 1/4 to 1/2 of an inch were reported (Figure 2) across
Northeast and parts of East Central Kansas. The ice built up on trees
and power lines and caused numerous power outages and downed limbs across
North Central and Northeast Kansas. Slick roads also led to numerous
accidents across the area.
Figure 2 Ice Accumulations reported on 1/27/2004
The freezing rain occurred as a layer of warm air (located about 3000 to
6000 feet above the ground) spread over a layer of below freezing air at the
surface (Figure 3). This allowed the precipitation to fall as rain
instead of snow. When the rain struck the cold ground, trees and cars,
it froze causing the widespread glazing exposed objects.
Figure 3 The Topeka sounding from 7 am 1/25/2004