#ILwx Zones 3/4 – Nice conditions day, inclement weather Wednesday-Friday, potential strong storms? BIG cool down this weekend! Kirk.

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Key Points – Tuesday, October 4, 2016 – Weekend


Good morning and thanks for checking out today’s Zones 3/4 update! We thought there may be a little patchy fog hanging around this morning, we have clear skies and calm winds, but the moisture just really isn’t there near the surface; with that being said, there still may be some patchy fog near sunrise, but it will quickly burn off after sunrise. With our temp to the left and our dew point to the right below, you can see the there’s about a 3-4 degree difference between the two…fog-like conditions have both the temp and the dew point very close if not the same. 

(Current temp on the left, current dew point on the right)

2mt10416-0513    2md10416-0513

We will still be seeing the impacts of high pressure today, keeping conditions pleasant and warm across Zone 4 and 3. Our next opportunity for inclement weather comes tonight into tomorrow morning as a cold front moves west to east across the Plains. Here’s a look how things are shaping up by 5amCDT tomorrow morning. We will have 40-50% shower chances tomorrow and possibly a rumble of thunder.

(Simulated radar 5amCDT Wednesday)


As the cold front pushes east throughout the morning and afternoon, our shower chances look to weaken as well across the Zones. Here’s how things are shaping up around noon and early afternoon, spotty showers and some thunder possible (30-40%). These will not be widespread, a lot of folks will likely stay dry tomorrow afternoon. 

(Simulated radar around noon Wednesday)


Showers and some thunder possible into Wednesday evening along the cold front. Once again, these will be scattered chances…not all folks across the Zones will see rainfall.

(Rainfall coverage Wednesday evening)


Thursday showers and storm coverage will be focused along our cold front that looks to stall out and transition into a warm front. These will be mainly contained to Zone 4, more specifically to areas in NW IL. With that being said, if the cold/warm front shifts slightly further south, the coverage of showers/storms will shift along with it. This will need a little fine-tuning today and tomorrow to narrow down the corridor of precipitation.

(Thursday showers/storm coverage)


Yesterday we mentioned the possibility for strong storms across portions of Zone 4 Wednesday night into Thursday…although conditions don’t look as impressive as yesterday, we wanted to keep the risk in the forecast for gusty winds, hail and heavy rainfall. We will fine-tune this risk today into Wednesday as we want to make sure you have best forecast possible with inclement weather.

(Potential strong storms Wednesday into Thursday)


Friday showers and storms chances will once again be focused near our frontal boundary pushing from west to east. There will be some instability associated with these showers, so some lightning and thunder will be in the forecast. Coverage right now looks to be 50-60%, especially across folks in Zone 4; Zone 3 will see a 20-30% coverage as the front looks to push east while losing some steam. It does appear as if we will clear out Friday afternoon into the evening across the Zones, giving way to some sunshine and nicer conditions. The GFS American model does have a slower frontal passage Friday, but our confidence with this solution is low at this time.

(Friday shower/storm potential)


Total precipitation through the end of the week looks more focused in NW IL along the frontal boundaries.

(Euro rainfall totals through end of week)


This weekend looks much cooler across the Zones as high pressure takes hold prior to the frontal passage. Temperatures will be MUCH cooler than what we will see this week, with highs this weekend in the 60s to the north and lower 70s further south. Sunday we could see portions of northern IL falling just short of 60 degrees…definitely more “fall-like conditions”!

(High pressure this weekend)


(Temperature anomaly map for the weekend)


Thanks for checking out Tuesday’s Zones 3/4 update, check back later for the All-Zones forecast by meteorologist Jonathon Marker!


Zones 3/4 Video (6min):

Confidence and Risk:

  • We have confidence that we will see plentiful sunshine today and pleasant conditions across the Zones
  • We have above average of precipitation coverage especially across NW Zones 4 where our frontal boundary sets up Wednesday into Friday morning
  • We have average to below average confidence in strong storms Wednesday into Thursday
  • We have high confidence that high temperatures will be above average through Thursday this week for most areas
  • We have high confidence of below average high temperatures from Friday into this weekend for most areas

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