While Chicago enjoys another sunny and relatively mild day, changes are afoot in the weather pattern. Those changes will be quite noticable by Sunday as the first true arctic plunge of the winter season takes place over the center of the nation. The graphic shows the upper level flow forecast by the ECMWF model valid Monday morning. A flow with origins from the North pole.
Highs today in the Chicago metro area are once again above normal with the sunshine and strong southwest winds boosting readings into the mid to upper 30s. The normal high is 31. We will cool off tomorrow with highs only in the mid to upper 20s. Back to the 30s for Friday and the low 40s for Saturday as another low pressure system moves to our north bringing in mild air.
The arctic air will pour in Saturday night behind a strong cold front. Highs then Sunday through Tuesday will only be in the teens with overnight lows ranging from -5 to 5 over the metro area. Warmest in the city, coldest west and north. Even colder readings well northwest of the metro area where there is snowcover. There is the chance of light snow Sunday as an upper level disturbance moves through.
As we continue in the drought, the southeast part of the country very roughly from the Ohio river valley southeast is experiencing a very wet winter. Yesterday an ice storm stretched from the Dallas area to Memphis and into northern Mississippi. There has been so much precipitation around Paducah Kentucky they are having to release water behind some of the dams to prevent flooding.
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