An unchanged weather look for the short term this morning. Warm air begins to work into the state today, although we really won’t feel significant changes to temps to the upside until tomorrow and the weekend. Temps will be well above normal this weekend and into early next week, averaging in the 50s and 60s for Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Southwest winds will fuel the warm up. Sunshine and blue sky will dominate. We have a completely dry finish to the week and weekend in store. The map above shows Sunday high temps, averaging 20-30 degrees above normal for Feb 19!
Our next system for next Tuesday is on the verge of fizzling out. The strong low that moves into the western Corn Belt Monday lifts northeast, and its leading edge cold front that comes through is showing dramatically less moisture. WE like our best rains Tuesday into early Wednesday, but now look for only a few hundredths to perhaps a third of an inch over no more than 60% of the state. That front will bring some moisture, but not much. However, it still brings a significant air mass change with as temps should drop behind the cold front Wednesday.
Cooler air holds through Thursday, but winds change to the south by late Thursday night ahead of our next system. A strong front and low pressure center move through the state for next Friday into Saturday. Rains at first with the warm front will be a few hundredths to perhaps a quarter of an inch to start off Friday. But, as the cold front comes in later Friday afternoon and Friday night, we see moderate to heavy rains in over the region. We look for combined rain totals next Friday and Friday night to be from .25”-1” with coverage at 100% of the state. The afternoon and evening rains in particular will be significant, and we can’t rule out thunderstorms.
Colder air follows the front in again to start the extended period, but we are not going to be much below normal at all. We have a weak front for the 1st into the 2nd of March with rains that can be upwards of half an inch. However models suggest there may be a second system splitting off and moving slower that brings additional rain for the 3rd. So, overall, we are leaving our combined moisture totals for the extended period alone…half to 1 inch over about 80% of the state. But, the timing and duration are still up in the air at this time…with a system that we originally saw as a 1-1.5 day event now potentially stretching to 3 days. Colder air may be in play for that system, and even if it does not come in in time to affect precipitation type for the 2nd and 3rd, we do see temps pulling back for the period following that system’s exit.