Some changes in the forecast this morning, and they are wetter changes. The front that is on its way to the area looks to slow down dramatically late in the week, and that should provide better rain totals. And, we see two more minor waves coming in behind the front. It all adds up to our first look at significant harvest delays this season.
Before things begin to turn sour, though, we do see a very warm and sunny day again today over the entire state. South winds will kick up and be a bit gustier than yesterday, taking temps up into the upper 70s and low to mid-80s statewide. This will allow for excellent harvest progress again today.
Tomorrow, we start to see clouds in ahead of our next front, with some prefrontal rains in over the northern half of the state. The action is not all that impressive for tomorrow, but we can’t rule it out either. Rains will be in the few hundredths to quarter-inch range with coverage at about 60% of the area north of I-70. South of 70, we see nothing.
Thursday, the actual cold front arrives and is slows its progression across the state from NW to southeast through the day. This will draw precipitation out into most of Friday as well, and we can see significant warm air coming up from the south, interacting with the colder air from the north. It is a recipe for strong thunderstorms Thursday night into Friday morning. Those thunderstorms can push rain totals higher as well. We like 2-day rain totals of .25”-1.5” and coverage of 80% of the state. Only far southern Indiana, areas south of US 50, will see less rain or even no rain. On Saturday we have a secondary trough that rotates through and it can bring an additional .25”-.75” of rain to about 70% of the state. That means combined, from tomorrow through the weekend, we can see rains of a half to 2 inches easily over the region. That will be enough to effectively grind harvest to a halt.
As if that were not enough, we look to see one more quick moving system coming through on Monday. That system has rains of .25”-1” sweeping across 70% of the state. The upper end of the range will be fueled by an expected line of strong thunderstorms in, mostly over northern Indiana. Without the thunderstorms, .25” rain totals will be mostly coming. Still,…it means we will have just that much more water to deal with before we can get harvest going again. The map above shows potential cumulative rain totals from tomorrow through next Monday night.
The good news is that we see dry weather for the balance of next week from Tuesday right on into the following weekend. In fact, most of the extended window is dry as well, with our next system of interest holding off until closer to the 17th into the 18th. That system will be a good rainmaker, though, so we will need to take advantage of harvest opportunities that arise late next week and weekend. Still,…those may be hard to get to, given the new amounts of rain we see coming to finish this week.