November 23rd – 30th.
The average mean temperature during the last eight days in November at the Lawrence Airport was 50.5, which was 12.1 degrees above normal.
The average high for the period was 65 and the average low 35. At my residence in southwest Lawrence, the average high was also 65 and the average low 40. This is pretty consistent with recent history where I find that my high temperatures agree closely with the airport values but my low temperatures run about five degrees warmer than the airport on average. This is easily explained by the fact that the airport is located on the Kansas River flood plain where cold drains and pools at night if winds are relatively light. The difference in low temperatures is far greater on clear and calm nights. In these situations, the low at the airport is anywhere from 5 to 10 degrees cooler than what I register at my residence in town. On cloudy and/or windy nights, low temperatures will be similar to a couple of degrees cooler at the airport.
Humidity was low during the period with generally breezy to windy conditions.
Thanksgiving Day, November 23rd, just before sunset on the Baker Wetlands. Temperature of 65 degrees with light winds and just some high clouds.
500 MB Thanksgiving morning, November 23rd.
November 25th, 4:30 PM: Once again on the east shore of Perry Lake – a fine day with clear skies, light winds and a temperature of about 60.
500 MB Saturday morning, November 25th.
November 26th at 3 PM: Trail through the tall grass at the Topeka Audubon Bird Sanctuary near the upper east arm of Perry Lake. A guy working on the trials said he saw a golden eagle by the lake (the lake visible in the background). It was another mild and dry day with the temperature in the upper 60s.
November 27th: A sunset walk on public lands just east of Perry Lake. Again the temperature was in the mid 60s with light south breezes, which had brought up somewhat higher humidity.
500 MB Monday morning, November 27th. A stout shortwave broke the high pressure ridge and pushed into California bringing some much-needed rain and high elevation snow to central sections of the state. Not much for southern sections of the state, though.
500 MB Tuesday evening, November 28th. The shortwave has become a closed low trekking across just to our south. It brought some decent rain up to around a half inch as far north as Medicine Lodge, Wichita and far southeast Kansas on the 29th, but just some cloudiness to our area (below).
November 29th, 3:50 PM – A thick overcast but all the rain missed to our south moving across far southern Kansas and northern Oklahoma. This is looking northwest from just north of Baldwin City, at the Signal Oak Historical Marker. Just to the north of this location is The Baldwin Woods, part of which can be seen to the center right in this photo. From the Jayhawk Audubon Website: “The Baldwin Woods is considered one of the westernmost examples of an eastern deciduous forest in the state. With mature oaks and hickories and a well-developed understory, the area is quite distinct from other wooded areas in the county.”
November 29th at 4:27 PM – Some interesting clouds and late day clearing about 3 miles southwest of Lone Star Lake – specifically, looking west off of E400 Rd just north of Highway 56. The area is known as the Globe Prairie and was home to Douglas County’s last Prairie Chickens. It is still a good area for open country bird watching as some of the largest tracts of native grassland in Douglas County are in this area around the hamlet of Globe.
November 29th, 4:36 PM. Looking west a short distance north of the above photo. The temperature was in the mid 50s at this time. With the dearth of rainfall over the last 5 weeks (0.10 to 0.20 inches), the surface of the ground is dry and the gravel roads very dusty.
November 30th at 4:10 PM: From the boat ramp at the Rock Creek arm of Clinton Lake. My approach disturbed the gulls, which in turn awakened the pelicans perched on a snag. Sunny skies, light winds and temperatures in the mid to upper 50s closed out the month.
November 30th, 4:30 PM. Saw this guy perched on the power supply to a small farmhouse southwest of Clinton Lake. Took this out the passenger side window of the vehicle.
He was either sharpening his beak or finishing a meal, but I didn’t see a carcass.