Thursday, November 17, 2016

Thursday's Record Warmth to Wind Chills in the Teens for the Weekend

Brrr!  Just thinking about the weekend has me shivering in the weather center.  And looking at all the snow showing up on radar over the Northern Plains Thursday evening reminds me of what is coming this winter season.

But stepping outside Thursday afternoon you would have never guessed that there was a powerful fall storm system about to bring an abrupt end to our warmth.

We tied our record high temperature Thursday, reaching 73 degrees.  The last time it was this warm on the 17th of November was back in 1941!  Temperatures Thursday night will still remain nearly ten degrees above our normal daytime temperature, with lows in the middle 50's.  Friday morning will be very mild, but windy.  Highs for Friday will be achieved late morning to the west of Rockford and early afternoon to the east.  A very strong cold front will arrive between 11am and 2pm.  This will bring with it a few scattered showers, an isolated thunderstorm or two, before quickly shifting east towards Chicago by the afternoon.  At first temperatures will be slow to drop, but once the cold air begins to move in it's all downhill from there.  Winds will also increase right ahead of the front and behind the front with gusts between 35 and 40 mph.  This will bring the air temperature into the low 30's by Saturday morning, but wind chills down into the teens.  By Sunday morning, wind chills will be in the low teens!

While there are a few flurries and light snow showers possible Saturday morning, the bigger focus should be on the wind and cold.  This is the first true taste of cold air this season.  And because we've become used to the warmth this fall, it's going to be a big shock to everyone Saturday afternoon.  Winds will gradually diminish by Saturday night with incoming high pressure.

Temperatures look to moderate for the beginning of next week.   But we're still keeping an eye on a potential storm system during the Tuesday/Wednesday time frame that could bring some rain to Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin right before Thanksgiving.

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