Balmy KC weather will give way to bitter cold and maybe snow

If highs reaching into the 50s tempt you to break out the shorts Wednesday afternoon, keep your winter coats and boots nearby.

The weather is going to take Kansas City on a wild ride the next 24 hours as a winter storm moves through the region, leaving behind some snow, slick spots and bitterly cold temperatures.

Kansas City, however, is likely to miss the brunt of this winter storm, with less than an inch of snow expected, according to the National Weather Service in Pleasant Hill.

Winds will pick up to 25 to 30 mph out of the north late Wednesday.

The strong winds will send wind chill values tumbling to the single digits below zero on Thursday morning.

The National Weather Service suggested that people allow additional time to commute on Thursday morning because of possible icy roads.

Highs Thursday will remain in the teens, with wind chills remaining near zero degrees.

Friday morning, with temperatures near or below zero, is shaping up to be one of the coldest mornings of the year in Kansas City. Wind chill values will be below zero, according to the National Weather Service.

North-central and northeastern Missouri are expected to get 4 to 6 inches of snow.

Snow is not expected to begin falling across northwestern Missouri until late Wednesday afternoon, according to the National Weather Service.

The snow will gradually spread to the southeast in the evening hours and end early Thursday.

Because of the warm temperatures, the precipitation is expected to start as rain over much of the area.

The rain isn’t expected in the Kansas City area until late Wednesday afternoon or early evening.

As temperatures start falling, rain is expected to switch to snow. Roads and sidewalks might develop some icy patches, the National Weather Service warned.

Another winter storm is possible this weekend and early next week. Precipitation is likely to start Saturday afternoon.

The National Weather Service says it’s too early to tell what type of precipitation might fall and the amounts of snow and ice this storm might produce.

To reach Robert A. Cronkleton, call 816-234-4261 or send email to bcronkleton@kcstar.com.