Severe weather possible Thursday

44801_492111539166_639419166_6916590_2169565_ndoppler1We’re closely monitoring 13ExacTrack Doppler this evening as strong storms roll through Eastern Iowa. Storms are severe near Cedar Rapids at this time but are expected to weaken as they move east of the Mississippi River. Our exclusive 13FutureTrack Severe Index shows the storms between now and 7am as non-severe. Still, some torrential rainfall should be expected. A 1-2″ report wouldn’t be too surprising.

48004_492111689166_639419166_6916594_2435785_nThings could get much more interesting, stormwise, on Thursday as our model is forecasting the potential for severe weather. We’ll have much more on this on Wednesday as our model resolution becomes a little better.

As always if you have a severe report, photo, or rainfall total, it’s one-click weather by email to weather@wrex.com

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Posted under severe weather

This post was written by Eric Sorensen on August 31, 2010

Ready to ride the roller coaster?

45121_491950559166_639419166_6913752_5385290_nA cool front will stall in the region on Wednesday which will allow numerous showers and thunderstorms to form. With cloudy skies and rainfall, will keep afternoon highs in the upper 70s, even with southerly wind. Rainfall amounts will near an inch in some spots (much below any flood thresholds).

On Thursday, an area of low pressure will develop in the Upper Midwest allowing a strong cold front to approach during the afternoon. There is now a concern of a possible severe weather outbreak in parts of Eastern Iowa, Wisconsin, and Illinois Thursday afternoon as mid-level winds will be strong and dry. The main threat of damaging wind will be forecast right now but later forecasts may include a chance of tornadoes and very large hail.

44748_491949584166_639419166_6913746_4498135_nThe front will sweep through in the evening with a gusty northwest wind. Friday will be a very different day for all of us in the Midwest. Winds will howl out of the north with temperatures only in the upper 60s. Lowering humidities will cause the temperatures to free-fall Friday night with early risers shivering in middle 40 degree temperatures!

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Posted under cold blast, severe weather

This post was written by Eric Sorensen on August 31, 2010

Chicagoland Earthquake?

blog_breaking1earthquakeAt exactly 1pm, seismic sensors southwest of Chicago registered a 2.7 magnitude temblor. While a reading of 2.7 is considered very weak, the location of this shaking is a bit suspect. As pictured here, the epicenter of this event is very near a large quarry in the city of LaGrange. Although several people reported the shaking, it only lasted a couple of seconds. Most earthquakes shake the ground for much longer than this, which suggests that this may have been a man-made incident. If this afternoon’s shaking was in fact caused by quarry blasting, the amount of explosives used must have been enormous to register a 2.7 magnitude quake! Did you feel anything or know anyone that did?119

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Posted under earthquake/tsunami

This post was written by Eric Sorensen on August 31, 2010

City of the Week

cityWhere do you live? Let 13 News Today know. Once a week starting Friday, we will celebrate your hometown as our city of the week. Take a picture of your town, either a nature, beauty or weather shot and show us!  
Just send an email with an attached picture to weather@wrex.com or ckahlbaum@wrex.com. Don’t forget to type down your name and of course the city. And if you want to brag about your town, do so! Help 13 News Today show everyone how beautiful our heartland is.

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Posted under Uncategorized

This post was written by Cyndi Kahlbaum on August 31, 2010

Heavy Rainfall Update

out19rainfall2rain1Just wanted to give everyone an update on the heavy rainfall that will head this way overnight tonight and lasting into Thursday. This will not be a continuous rainfall, though there may be several rounds of scattered storms that will produce heavy rainfall at times. Our first cold front will work its way south later tonight before stalling out just to our North across the Wisconsin-Illinois border. Since we are stuck on the south side of the front, a very moist air mass will prime our atmosphere to develop thunderstorms that could produce heavy rainfall totals. 1-2 inches is possible over the next 48 hours, but some areas may receive closer to 2.5 inches.  Flash flooding should not be a major concern, only because we’ve had a nice dry spell for the past several days which should allow for most of the rain to be absorbed. Just be aware for water over the roadways due to clogged drains and do not forget your umbrellas.

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Posted under rain, weather

This post was written by Cyndi Kahlbaum on August 31, 2010

Earl and Fiona, sittin’ in a tree…

46739_491502509166_639419166_6903588_3238627_n

46080_491501919166_639419166_6903586_5325625_n

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Posted under tropical weather

This post was written by Eric Sorensen on August 30, 2010

Heavy rainfall possible Wednesday and Thursday

47274_491486054166_639419166_6903327_85073_nAn area of low pressure will develop in Oklahoma and track into Iowa on Wednesday. This will be an efficient storm-producer for both Wednesday and Thursday with strong southerly wind bringing moisture in off of the Gulf of Mexico. Heavy rain being the main threat, however larger storms could produce gusty wind. Temperatures will be tricky on this side of the forecast as they’ll be highly dependent on the amount of cloud-cover and rainfall. Will be a little conservative with this and shoot for upper 70s, but certainly could pop into the 80s if there’s enough sunshine. -ES

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Posted under rain

This post was written by Eric Sorensen on August 30, 2010

Evaporating Rain

out18virga2virgavirga1Virga or fall streaks are a form of precipitation that evaporates before it hits the ground. Low humidity and high temperatures can cause rain to evaporate completely right after its release from a cloud. At high altitudes, the precipitation falls mainly as ice crystals before melting and finally evaporating.
Virga also has a role in seeding storm cells. It seeds the storm with small particles from one cloud that are blown into neighboring supersaturated air and act as “food” for the next storm cloud to start forming.
Virga can produce dramatic and beautiful scenes during a sunset. The light can be caught by the streamers of falling precipitation and light it up into so many beautiful colors.

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Posted under science, weather

This post was written by Cyndi Kahlbaum on August 30, 2010

Earl to stay out to sea, Fiona another story?

118Here is the 5 day forecast track for Hurricane Earl. Although it will strengthen in the next couple of days, an increasingly northerly track will take the system into cooler waters and subsequently weaken it. The very trough that will bring our rain chances Tuesday-Thursday will help to turn Earl north and eventually away from the east coast. What we will be watching next is an area of thunderstorms a couple of days behind Earl. These are not developed enough to be considered a tropical depression yet, but as they track west and move into a favorable environment, we may have Tropical Depression Fiona before too long. This one will have to be watched as the European model does in fact bring it on a more westerly track toward the Gulf region.

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Posted under tropical weather

This post was written by Aaron Brackett on August 29, 2010

A corny dewpoint forecast

117This summer has seen some very high dew points, at times into the middle 70′s making things feel very sticky. What if corn had something to do with our moisture content…well it does! During this summer’s wet growing season, a large amount of moisture evaporated off the leaves of cornfields through the midwest. Combining southerly gulf flow with this evapotranspiration, this is why we see so much humidity during our summers.

Now that the growing season is coming to a close, crops aren’t shedding as much water into the atmosphere. Despite southerly flow, this is one cause of our recently drier air.

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Posted under weather

This post was written by Aaron Brackett on August 28, 2010