After an exceptionally warm weekend, we start off this week with more mild air. In fact, most of this week we will see temps well above normal. WE do have a little bit of moisture coming in, though, and that will trigger cloud development through the day today. Clouds will build in this afternoon, coming in from the NW. However, rains do not start to work in until after midnight tonight. Temps push to near record levels or record levels once again.
Rains overnight tonight through tomorrow do not look all that spectacular. WE look for rain totals of a few hundredths to at most a third of an inch over about 80% of the state today. That coverage is a little better than what we were talking going home last Friday, but the rain totals are still minor. All the action should be done well before sunset tomorrow night. The map above shows rain totals through midnight tomorrow night.
Dry and warm for Wednesday and Thursday. Sunshine will remain the key player in the forecast those days. Then clouds begin to build Thursday night. A warm front triggers some good rains overnight Thursday night through early Friday over the northern half to third of the state. WE like rains of a few hundredths all the way up to half an inch in areas north of I-70, with the higher rain totals limited to areas north of US 30, and up into Lower Michigan. Then, a cold front sweeps through Friday bringing an additional few hundredths to half an inch, but coverage will be around 60%. All told, with both fronts combined, we can see up to half an inch over about 75% of the state to finish the week.
The bigger story will likely be the cold air that comes in behind that front. Temps push down to near normal levels. That feels very cold after the extended push of warm air we will have just worked through…but it is still impressive that even in that cold air push, we do not go below normal. The cold air is in for Saturday and Sunday, but then temps climb again to above normal levels to start the next week.
A major storm complex arrives for next Tuesday. As we finish the month, we will do so with some moderate to heavy rains. Strong rains bring totals of half to 1.25” or more to all of the state. WE can even see higher rain totals late Tuesday night in southern Indiana as the front starts to leave, if strong to severe thunderstorms develop (and they can). However, we are cautious on getting too ramped up here just yet, as models have a bias of late of heavier rain events farther out, and then as we get closer, the moisture becomes less impressive. Still, even if the moisture loses some intensity…this will be a significant precipitation event as we switch the calendar into March.
Behind that system, temps look to continue our pattern of mostly normal to above normal for the first few days of March. We are watching for our next system in the extended period to move in around the 7th. Rains do not look all that impressive.