Thunderstorms bring little rain to Garden City

Meghan Flynn
Lightning fills a portion of the sky in this long exposure photograph as thunderstorms move through Garden City early Sunday.

Severe storms stayed clear of Garden City this weekend.

Bill Turner, a forecaster with the National Weather Service office in Dodge City, said while there were reports of high winds, the thunderstorms and precipitation stayed north of the Garden City area.

During the storm Friday evening into Saturday morning, there were reports of a utility pole blown down in Scott City about 12:35 a.m., with another wind gust of 62 mph about 10 miles southeast of Scott City at 12:37 a.m.

The highest reported wind gust in the area during that storm was 67 mph out at the Garden city airport at 12:50 a.m. Saturday.

As of 9:15 a.m. Saturday, there was a report of 1.22 inches of rain at station 23, which is northeast of Garden City. No rain was reported from that storm at the Garden City airport.

No precipitation was reported for the June 26-27 storm in Lakin, Ulysses, Sublette or Cimarron. Dighton received 0.3 inches.

Turner reported that most of the rain was reported north of US-50 highway on Friday night and Saturday morning.

There were small amounts of rainfall during the June 27-28 storm, Turner said.

Garden City received an average of 0.2 inches of rain during that storm, and Scott City received about the same.

Since Jan. 1, Garden City has only received 2.75 inches of rain. The normal is 10.31 inches, meaning the city’s rainfall total is 7.56 inches below normal from the previous year, Turner reported.

“It’s really bad,” he said.

Dodge City has received 9.87 inches of rain since Jan. 1 and typically receives 10.67 inches of rain by this point.

The further west, the drier it gets, Turner said.

“As you go toward highway 83 and especially west, there’s still a severe to extreme drought going on,” he said.

Turner said the National Weather Service uses the U.S. Drought Monitor to watch the drought. There are four levels ranging from normal to extreme.

Garden City is in severe drought, or a level two, Turner said. Area cities in severe drought include Ulysses, Elkhart and Syracuse.

Counties in extreme drought include Hamilton, Kearny, Stanton, Grant, Morton and Stevens.

“Basically the western part of southwest Kansas,” he said. “Once you get west of Lakin and Ulysses, the grass is dead. It’s really bad over there.”

Little rain is expected in the near future, Turner said.

“We’re going into the summer doldrums,” he said. “It’s going to be hot and dry most of the time.”

There is maybe a 30% chance of rain on Friday, but nothing else is predicted.