July ends dry!

No question about it! July 2013 has been quite dry. We’ll end the month just a hair shy of two inches below normal. But that doesn’t mean we’re headed back into a drought! We are still riding the surplus from a rainy June with that month’s surplus of more than three inches. And when you look at the entire year, we’re still more than 8 inches ahead of normal! -Eric Capture

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Posted under climate/climate change

This post was written by qni_it on July 31, 2013

Out with the old, but not in with the new

The month of July comes to a close tonight and so we begin a new month tomorrow. The past week of cool weather has many of us wishing for a return to hotter summer weather, but unfortunately the first week of August looks to be just as cool as the end of this month has been. Our high temperatures will struggle to reach 80 degrees heading into this weekend, and they will only make it into the middle 70s to begin next week. Sometimes it is better to think warmer thoughts when things are on the cool side, so here is an updated tracker of last July compared to this July. Boy what a difference a year can make! -GregCapture

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Posted under statistics, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 31, 2013

Why so cool?

1For those of you wanting warm, summery weather this isn’t your best news! This past weekend was the coldest July weekend in Rockford history! Temperatures were nearly 20 degrees below normal on Saturday. And while we were working in the right direction Sunday and Monday, today’s high temperature of 70° was 13° below normal.

The forecast for the next 7 days will average 5-10 degrees below the average high of 83°.

2Here’s the weather map for the remainder of the week. While we experience unseasonably cool weather, it will remain quite hot in the Desert Southwest up to the Pacific Northwest. Bouts of heavy rain are expected from the Coastal Bend of Texas through New Orleans and up the East Coast.

But why is it this way? We can give you a forecast for temperatures and the current weather map without explaining why it’s occurring! Here’s a unique map to visualize how the airmasses move around the globe. A lot of times we talk about the jet stream as the “steering wheel of the storm systems.” Indeed, that’s what happens as this river of air at high altitudes moves the airmasses along. 3But if you were to look straight down on the North Pole, you’d see a flower of sorts. Usually, the jetstream has about 5-7 ridges and troughs going around the northern hemisphere. For us, we’ve been stuck in a longwave trough for the past four days. More often than not, the troughs and ridges displace one another every few days, allowing our weather to balance itself out. However, this longwave trough is going to stay put a little longer.

We will see many 90° temperatures this summer (and even this fall). Don’t give up hope for more warm, summer weather. It will come back in about 10 days or so. -Eric

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Posted under climate/climate change, cold blast

This post was written by qni_it on July 30, 2013

Believe it or Not

Believe it or not, this month will end just slightly below where we are supposed to with respects to monthly average temperature. CaptureSo far we have racked up 15 days with below average high temperatures and 14 days with above average high temperature. Taking an average of the day time highs and overnight lows gives us a monthly average of 73.6° so far this month which is just 0.3° below the overall average temperature for the month of July. It may be a bit chilly out right now, but I would still call that a pretty NICE month as a whole, wouldn’t you? -Greg

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Posted under weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 30, 2013

Cool stretch to continue for at least a week!

I joked on my Facebook page this weekend if everyone was enjoying the first weekend of October! Shorts and short-sleeves were replaced by sweaters and jeans with temperatures some 20 degrees below normal.

1Since everyone (including myself) is wondering when the warmth will return, I decided to look well beyond the 7 Day Forecast range. Turns out, the cooler weather will be locked in with the jetstream diving to our south for the better part of 10 days. It’s not until the middle of next week that the models are returning us to a warmer weather pattern. In this graphic, you can visualize where the jet will reside: from Montana down to the Tennessee/Kentucky area.

The Great Lakes States will have a higher-than-normal chance of seeing cool weather with Texas, the Desert Southwest, and the Pacific Northwest remaining warmer than normal.

2Looking at our precipitation for the year…we’re doing okay. However, we’ve seen quite a dry stretch over the past few weeks. Unfortunately, if you’ve got a garden, things don’t look that great. With the jet diving to our southwest, it will keep the Gulf of Mexico locked up. We have a higher-than-normal chance of remaining dry through the next ten days! -Eric

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Posted under climate/climate change

This post was written by qni_it on July 29, 2013

Tropical Storm Flossie

2Hawaiians are bracing themselves as Tropical Storm Flossie makes its approach. The storm has weakened in the past 12 hours, but as of 11am CST it still has a sustained wind speed of 45mph with gusts as high as 60mph. The Big Island and Maui are expected to see the brunt of the storm with the likelihood of 18 foot waves, flash flooding, mudslides, tornadoes and waterspouts. Despite the weakening of the system, many signs point to Flossie remaining a tropical storm until we head into Wednesday. -Greg

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Posted under flooding, tropical weather, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 29, 2013

Coldest July Weekend…..Ever!

coldestjulyweekendEVERFresh off a record cold high temperature on Saturday, Rockford set another late-July record.  When we average Saturday and Sunday’s low temperatures—57 and 53 degrees respectively—and high temperatures—65 and 70 degrees respectively—we get a weekend average temperature of 60.5 degrees.  In 107 years of record-keeping, a July weekend in Rockford has never been as cold as July 27 & 28, 2013!   -Joe

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Posted under 13 Climate Authority, record weather, statistics, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 28, 2013

Lee County Fair-cast

leecountyfairjuly282013Fair season is upon us!  Lee County is wrapping up it’s 2013 4-H Fair and Junior Show with weather conditions typically seen in October.  A Canadian airmass—quite cool for late July in northern Illinois—will keep temperatures well below normal for the last day of the Lee County 4-H Fair.  If you’re heading out to the fairgrounds on Sunday, located on Route 30 just north of the city of Amboy, you might want to bring a light jacket and perhaps an umbrella.

A mostly cloudy sky is expected on Sunday, although a few sunny breaks are likely. Northwesterly breezes and high temperatures in the upper 60s will keep things feeling cool (and comfortable for some). While most of the day will remain dry, there is a slight chance of rain.  A quick, pop-up shower or two is possible.

-Joe

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Posted under event, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 27, 2013

New Record Set in Rockford

recordminimumhighMost of us expect hot temperatures to be the cause of any new record during the middle of Summer.  However, Rockford set a new record for the coldest high temperature ever observed on July 27th!  On Saturday, July 27, 2013 the mercury only rose to 65 degrees.  That replaced the old record cold high of 67 degrees from 1981.  Saturday’s high temperature was similar to what we might expect around the end of April or middle of October!  -Joe

 

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Posted under cold blast, record weather, statistics, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 27, 2013

Strong thunderstorms possible this afternoon

UntitledOur storm threat has ended in the Rockford Metro as the front is now through. However, a few storms will be possible through 8pm in Northern DeKalb Co. and down around the Mendota area. Much cooler and breezy conditions tonight with lows in the 50s. -Eric

 exactrack(4:58 PM) nwsbot: Local Storm Report by NWS LOT: Loves Park [Winnebago Co, IL] trained spotter reports HAIL of pea size (E0.25 INCH) at 04:52 PM CDT — heavy rainfall with very low visibility. 25-30 mph winds.

 

(4:23 PM) nwsbot: Local Storm Report by NWS LOT: South Beloit [Winnebago Co, IL] broadcast media reports HAIL of pea size (E0.25 INCH) at 04:20 PM CDT —

A broken line of intense thunderstorms has formed along a cold front. These storms are racing east at over 40mph and will produce winds near 60mph in localized areas. In addition, some large hail will be possible as these storms move into a more favorable spot for storms in South Central Wisconsin by 4pm. -Eric

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Posted under severe weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 26, 2013