Slam Dunk!

CaptureWe have officially and finally made it into spring! Today and tomorrow look great when it comes to temperatures with highs today in the mid to upper 40s and we make a run for the mid to upper 50s tomorrow. In fact, some spots along the I88 corridor could push near 60 degrees! Make sure you enjoy these two days, because late tomorrow we bring in a chance for a few scattered showers. Those showers will then usher in a cool spell that will leave us with highs in the 30s Saturday-Wednesday. It won’t be a bitterly cold spell, but our highs will be more than ten degrees below average. – Greg

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Posted under cold blast, event

This post was written by GregBobos on March 20, 2014

Chilly Sunday on Tap

After some light snow Saturday night, cold air will usher into northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin for Sunday. Our afternoon temperatures will only reach the upper 20s. To put this into perspective, we average upper 20s for highs in early January! Our average high temperature for the middle of March is well into the upper 40s.

Sunday Morning Wind Chill: Single Digits

Sunday Morning Wind Chill: Single Digits

Thanks to a blustery northeast wind sustained between 10 and 20mph with gusts up to 30mph, our wind chill will be biting! On Sunday morning it will range from 0 to 10 degrees. By Sunday afternoon, it will ease into the teens.

We’ll warm up a handful of degrees more for St. Patrick’s Day on Monday and then it’s back to the 50s by Election Day Tuesday. Click HERE for the 7-Day.

-Joe

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Posted under cold blast, FutureTrack, weather

This post was written by Joe Astolfi on March 15, 2014

Records All Around

We have officially flipped the calendar into the month of March, but I think someone forgot to tell Mother Nature, because this stands to be one of the coldest March days on record. This morning was brutally cold once again with the low temperature in Rockford bottoming out at -11°. 11pmwindchillThat reading blew our low temp record for this date out of the water. The previous record of -4° was set back in 2002. Our -11° also tied the record for the coldest March temperature ever recorded. 1As if those aren’t enough records for one day, if we do not top 18° this afternoon, today will go down as the coldest high temperature ever on this date! – Greg Capture

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Posted under cold blast, statistics, winter weather

This post was written by GregBobos on March 3, 2014

March 2nd Record Cold

It has been a record-filled first weekend of March. First came the snow on Saturday and then the cold on Sunday.

Thanks to two rounds of snow during the 24-hour period of March 1st, a total of 4.6 inches of snow fell at Chicago Rockford International Airport. This was the highest one-day total observed on any March 1st since 1906! The previous record was just 2.0 inches from 1943.

Local High Temps: March 2, 2014

Local High Temps: March 2, 2014

As arctic air settled in on Sunday, the high temperature in Rockford only topped out at a chilly 9 degrees. This is the coldest high temperature ever observed on any March 2nd since 1906. In fact, Sunday’s high replaced a 102-year-old record! The previous record was 14 degrees from 1912. What’s even more interesting is that March 2, 2014 will likely enter the record books as the coldest March high temperature ever!!! Until now, the coldest March high was 10 degrees on March 8, 1932.

New Record Cold High Temperature

New Record Cold High Temperature

If that wasn’t enough, two more records could fall on Monday….

-Joe

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Posted under 13 Climate Authority, cold blast, record weather, snow, statistics, weather, winter weather

This post was written by Joe Astolfi on March 2, 2014

Quiet, Cold Sunday

Aside from a few morning snow flurries, Sunday will be relatively quiet. Arctic high pressure will build into the region, so cloud cover will gradually decrease as the day wears on. High temperatures will be about 30 degrees COLDER than normal for early March! High near 10 degrees.

FutureTrack Sunday Morning

FutureTrack Sunday Morning

Although our northerly wind will be light, between 5 and 15mph, our wind chill be quite cold. Wind chill values will range between -20 and -10 degrees throughout the day.

FutureTrack Wind Chill Sunday

FutureTrack Wind Chill Sunday

Air temperatures will fall below zero Sunday night through Monday morning and we’ll stay locked in with frigid air through Tuesday. Temperature records will be in jeopardy on Monday, including a record low (-4° from 2002) and a record cold high (18° from 2002).

Staying Cold

Staying Cold

A much-needed end-of-the-work-week warm up is in our forecast. Check out the 7-day for a couple 30+ degree high temperatures!

-Joe

 

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Posted under cold blast, FutureTrack, record weather, statistics, weather, winter weather

This post was written by Joe Astolfi on March 2, 2014

A Very Rare Day

We are in the midst of a late February deep freeze that doesn’t come along that often. Today will easily break the record for the coldest high temperature on this date. The previous record was 18°, and today’s forecast high is a third of that, sitting at 6 degrees! stuff4That high temperature will also make this only the 3rd day in the last 109 years (since 1905) in which a high temperature did not break into the double digits from the last week of February on toward spring and summer. I wish I could end this post on a warm note, but it will take us at least two weeks to start to dig ourselves out of this very deep and cold hole. Highs will remain below average until we push into the middle of March. – Greg

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Posted under cold blast, statistics, winter weather

This post was written by GregBobos on February 27, 2014

This Winter vs. 1970s Winters

Meteorological winter will wrap up at the end of the month. Typically the coldest three months of the year, meteorological winter includes the entire months of December, January, and February. As we all know, this winter has been exceptionally snowy and cold. In fact, we are currently the 4th coldest winter on record!  Amazingly, the top 3 coldest winters in Rockford all occurred one after another in the late 1970s.

stuff1

The winters of 1976-77, 1977-78, and 1978-79 were the coldest, taking into account high and low temperatures.  The winters of 1977-78 and 1978-79 hold the title for the 13th snowiest and 2nd snowiest, respectively.  The snowiest meteorological winter was 2007-08 with 65.1 inches.

stuff2

With our current forecast through the end of the month (Thursday & Friday), we have a good shot at tying for the 3rd coldest winter! But what happens after meteorological winter?

March 1st is the start of meteorological spring. Meteorological spring encompasses March, April, and May. The average temperature  for the season is 48.9°F.  If we look at the harsh winters of the late 70s, many of them ended up with below average spring temperatures.  One year that bucked the trend was 1977: coming off of the 3rd coldest winter was the 2nd warmest spring on record!

Near the Chrysler Plant in the late 1970s

Near the Chrysler Plant in the late 1970s

Snow is likely during the first half of meteorological spring; it’s even possible into May.  However, after snowier-than-average winters in 1977-78 and 1978-79, spring snowfall was actually below average.  Hopefully that is a sign of things to come as we head through the next several weeks! Winter 2013-14 is, after all, the 9th snowiest on record.

Meteorological Winter vs. Meteorological Spring

Meteorological Winter vs. Meteorological Spring

In the weeks to come, there are a few signs that temperatures will warm above average. Unfortunately, it’s not until the middle of March! Looking beyond spring, the three late 1970′s meteorological summer seasons ended up just slightly below average on the temperature trend.

-Joe

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Posted under 13 Climate Authority, climate/climate change, cold blast, news, photos, record weather, snow, statistics, weather, winter weather

This post was written by Joe Astolfi on February 26, 2014

Dangerously cold early Wednesday

2Temperatures will dip to around -9° with peak wind chills near -25°. That is cold enough that exposed skin will only need 20 minutes to succumb to frostbite! Usually, when we dip below zero here in Northern Illinois, it’s a result of a cold, Canadian high pressure system overhead. However, this go-around we’ve got a stiff northwesterly wind. That will cause insult to injury for anyone who has to be up around sunrise Wednesday.
The wind chill will stay below zero all day, even with sunshine and temperatures in the teens.

1This extreme cold is out of the ordinary in early January. But the calendar will read March in just a few days. Temperatures will be 32° below normal on Thursday. To put that in perspective, it’s like a 50° afternoon in the middle of July. That’s unheard of! Unfortunately, the cooler-than-normal temperatures will stick around through March 11th. -Eric

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This post was written by Eric Sorensen on February 25, 2014

Going For Another Record

We drop back below zero once again tonight, which is a scenario we are far too accustomed to this winter. belowzTonight will be the first of three nights in a row that put a minus sign in front of our low temperatures. The record low temperature tomorrow is -6° set back in 1994. Our forecasted low temperature is nine below, which obviously would break the previous record. But, it will feel much colder than nine below thanks to the wind. Our wind chill values drop to a dangerously low level (-30° to -20°) as we head into tomorrow morning. – Greg

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Posted under cold blast, statistics, winter weather

This post was written by GregBobos on February 25, 2014

Snow Zone comes closer next week

7DAYArctic high pressure will continue to dominate the weather over the Upper Midwest this week. There will be two reinforcing shots of colder air, but the pattern won’t be enough to get the snow going. So, look for more of the same here for a few days. And we may be talking about more record-breaking cold as these numbers are just about as cold as we can get here in the last week of February.

snowFor those of you who are still craving more snow, (are there still any of you out there?) there are some indications we could be near the “snow zone” next week. A series of low pressure systems will move from the Southern Plains into the Mid-Atlantic states. The highest chance for snow will be in a zone from St. Louis to Cleveland.

No big shocker since our winter has been either cold or snowy. But those signs of spring still remain a distant possibility on the long-range outlooks. -Eric

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This post was written by Eric Sorensen on February 24, 2014