Posted under weather
This post was written by Eric Sorensen on March 6, 2014
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.
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.
If that wasn’t enough, two more records could fall on Monday….
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on March 2, 2014
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.
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.
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).
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!
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on March 2, 2014
As expected, snow will move out of the Stateline area between midnight and 3am. Areas along and south of the I-88 corridor will hang onto the snow the longest. Additional minor accumulations are possible. Patchy light drizzle will be a concern until about 3am; however, dry Arctic air will keep that chance fairly small. A quick flurry or two will dot the radar early Sunday morning.
Snowfall totals from our first round of snow on Friday night / Saturday post-midnight fell in line with our forecast of around one inch. The second round of snow followed suit with our forecast as well. A general three to five inches blanketed much of northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin.
Rockford picked up 1.2″ from the first round and 3.4″ from the second round. This adds up to 4.6″ of snow that fell during the 24-hour period on Saturday—a record amount for March 1st!
Final totals will be posted as the information becomes available. Look for updates throughout the day Sunday. -Joe
2ND ROUND FINAL TOTALS (updated Sunday morning):
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on March 1, 2014
We have two rounds of snow to get through this weekend. The first round of light snow will linger through the pre-dawn hours of Saturday morning. The first round will be the lesser of the two: the appetizer to the main course. The main course, of course, is the second round of snow that will blanket the area late Saturday.
Snow looks to push back into the area Saturday afternoon after 1pm. The snow will ramp up in intensity during the late afternoon and evening, continuing into the nighttime hours. Snow will taper off before dawn Sunday. It appears that 3 to 5 inches of accumulation will be possible when it’s all said and done. The higher totals will be along and south of the Interstate 88 corridor. The lowest amounts will occur in southern Wisconsin. Temperatures will be in the teens during this snowfall event. Wind will be out of the north-northwest around 5 to 15mph, with a few gusts to 20mph.
As of 8am Saturday morning, the WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY area has expanded to included all 13 of our local counties.
Travel will be impacted Saturday evening through Sunday morning as snow plows battle this latest round of snow. Use caution if you have to travel. Keep it tuned to the weather blog, wrex.com, our Facebook and Twitter feeds for the latest the information.
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on February 28, 2014
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on February 26, 2014
With meteorological winter coming to an end this Friday, it looks as though this winter will go down as the 9th snowiest in Rockford’s history! Meteorological winter is defined as the entire months of December, January and February. During this time-frame, 46.5 inches of snow was recorded at Chicago Rockford International Airport on the city’s south side.
Looking at our extended forecast, there is one chance of accumulating snow through the end of the month. That chance arrives Monday evening and Monday night. A quick coating of snow up to 1 inch is possible, although models are trending less today than on Saturday. So I would give us just a 30% chance of seeing an extra inch of snow added to our seasonal total. However, if we do pick up one more inch, winter 2013/2014 could slip into the 8th snowiest spot.
We’ll be tracking Monday evening’s round of light snow on 13 News Weekend and 13 News Today.
Here are the Top 10 snowiest winters in Rockford:
*as of February 23, 2014
We all know that Mother Nature doesn’t stop the snow from falling when the calender hits March 1st, so we’ll be tracking our yearly snowfall total beyond the end of meteorological winter. Our yearly snowfall is recorded from July through June, and our snowiest was 1978/1979 with 74.5 inches followed closely by 2007/2008 with 72.9 inches. As it stands right now, 2013/2014 is at 47.5 inches of snow.
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on February 23, 2014
As we enter the last week of February, we typically expect temperatures to rise above freezing during the day. Our average high temperature is 40 degrees by next weekend!
Welcome to reality! We’re headed back into the deep freeze, at least by late February standards. Our forecast highs are in the teens and 20s. Low temperatures will fall below zero. The core of the cold air will be in place from Tuesday evening through Friday afternoon. Click here for the 7-Day Forecast.
It will be cold enough that a few long-standing records will be in jeopardy:
The good news is that our weather will be relatively quiet, in terms of what’s falling from the sky. Late Monday and Monday night, a dusting to an inch of snow is possible. The rest of the time we’ll get to enjoy some sunshine!
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on February 22, 2014
Sunday will be an uneventful day….the calm before the storm, so to speak. Our attention is focused on Monday, when a wintry mess will push through the Midwest. The next system to impact the Stateline will arrive in the continental United States late Sunday. It will be knocking on our door very early Monday morning.
Model trends continue to track an area of low pressure through southern Iowa, central Illinois, and central Indiana. This track would result in mainly snow for our local area. At the onset, this system will have to overcome dry air in our atmosphere. As moisture from the system evaporates in our atmosphere, the air will cool until precipitation forms and falls to the ground. As a result, a wintry mix of snow, sleet, rain, and freezing rain will be possible very early Monday morning. Ice accumulations will be minor, if any.
As the morning quickly progresses and our atmosphere continues to cool, a change over to all snow is expected in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin. Far southern Whiteside, Lee, and DeKalb County may hang on to a wintry mix through late morning. Temperatures will top out around 30 degrees in Rockford, upper 20s in southern Wisconsin, and lower 30s along the I-88 corridor.
There are still a few “what-if’s” with this system, including speed and exact track. A change in the path of this system of 40 or 50 miles will change our snowfall potential. As far as the timing goes, it appears that the bulk of this system will occur during the daylight hours of Monday. By late afternoon, it should be on its way out. Our first look at potential snowfall shows several inches. The highest totals will fall about 200 miles north of the center of low pressure; it appears central Wisconsin may bear the brunt of the heaviest snow (perhaps 6 inches or more). Again, should the track of the low change, snowfall totals will change.
We will keep you up to date as new information becomes available! What could potentially be the highest or second-highest one-day snowfall event of the winter will be followed by melting snow and above average temperatures by the middle of next week. That could be our silver lining!
This post was written by Joe Astolfi on February 15, 2014