The forecast is unchanged this morning for the immediate short term – today and tomorrow. The rest of the forecast is similar, but we are making a few tweaks that may benefit some, but not others. Here is our look at it this morning.
Today will be sunny and dry again over the entire state. We likely see some clouds building this afternoon as moisture draws close across Illinois. However, it should be another good drying day in many areas.
Scattered showers start to develop overnight and then continue through the day tomorrow. We can’t rule out a few thunderstorms too, although those will not hit all areas of the state. Because of the thunderstorm threat, we have a wide range for precipitation tomorrow, from .2”-1.2” and coverage will end up being around 80% of the state. The heaviest rains or thunderstorm chances may set up in the afternoon running from areas around Fort Wayne all the way back into far SW Indiana. However, we don’t want to get too cute with that limitation. Most of us will be keeping fingers crossed to miss the bigger stuff…but someone somewhere is going to get it.
Thursday, we start to see some separation in regions for the weather pattern. While we continue to see the frontal boundary from Wednesday over the Ohio Valley, we start to see some tropical moisture surging northward out of the gulf, and that will start to tie in with the old boundary. So, For Thursday, Friday and Saturday, we see our best chances of rain stay over the southern half of the state, and we can see dry weather up north. On Thursday, we look for a mix of clouds and sun from I-70 northward, and we can see scattered showers from I-70 southward. Those bring a few hundredths to .25” to the southern half of the state with 60% coverage. Similarly, Friday has partly to mostly sunny sky potential for the northern half of the state, while we see a lot of clouds and limited south down south, with the chance of showers bringing up to .25” over 70% of areas south of I-70. For Saturday, we see sun giving way to increasing clouds in the north, but clouds basically from the get-go in the south. Showers overspread the state from south to north, and by sunset we see showers from US 24 southward, bringing a few hundredths to .4” and 80% coverage. Sunday will feature scattered showers statewide, with the chance for an additional .1”-.4” and 80% coverage. The map shows rain totals through Sunday evening, which will encompass tomorrow’s rain, and then the weekend event too (along with the southern Indiana action the rest of this week.)
Next week looks mostly dry. We see partly to mostly sunny skies Monday through Thursday. On Friday we see sunshine over most of the state too but have to look out for a few scattered showers from US 50 south. That means most of the state sees 5 straight days of dry weather potential next week.
We finish out the extended period with a little more activity. Showers and thunderstorms are around for Saturday the 15th bringing .1”-.6” and 70% coverage. Then on Sunday we see a mix of clouds and sun up north, but a chance of late afternoon and evening showers south of I-70. Those showers can bring up to half an inch, but only 50% coverage. Monday the 17th shows potential for showers producing .05”-.45” rain and 60% coverage, then we go dry and partly sunny for Tuesday the 18th. Showers and thunderstorms are back for Wednesday the 19th over the northern half of the state, and could bring some bigger totals, from .25”-1.5” and 80% coverage.
So, generally speaking, the north is looking a lot better in this forecast, if we truly do see this pattern evolve this way. The moisture staying south does not help everyone, but if we can see 3 days of drying up north and scoot by with rains in the lower end of the range tomorrow, that will allow for some additional fieldwork in northern locations later this week, in our opinion. Then after the weekend, we see an excellent chance of fieldwork next…but how much really will come down to what the weekend rains do in the north, and what the rains for the last have of the week and weekend down south (combined). Still, bigger holes opening up like this is a step in the right direction.