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  • Tim McGill

Drought Deepening In Illinois

It has now been more than four weeks since we saw a day with temperatures below average. During those 28 days we have seen just under an inch of rain. Warm and dry have been the keywords for this past summer but the pattern could be changing soon. Let's hope so because the drought that developed a few weeks ago across portions of our area has now deepened. The area now in a moderate drought has increase six times compared to last week according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. More than half of Illinois is now considered abnormally dry. That is a nearly 17% increase from last week. We need some rain here.

We could be getting a lot of rain next week. Models are suggesting a soggy pattern for the first full week of September. The GFS model squeezes out between 2.5" to 3.5" of rain in total between Sunday and next Friday afternoon. That would put a huge dent in the drought.

The 6-10 day precipitation probability forecast has us outlooked for above average precipitation from September 9th through the 13th too. Unfortunately, the longer range 8-14 day forecast has us outlooked for below average precipitation from September 11th through the 17th.

The change to a wet pattern will coincide with a change to a cooler pattern too. It will be mild for us on this Friday. Highs today will be right around average in the upper 70s. Highs warm up through the weekend with middle 80s by Sunday.

Cooler air is coming though for next week. It looks like the coolest day will be Tuesday. The temperature anomaly forecast is calling for Tuesday afternoons temperatures to be anywhere from 20° to 40° below average across most of the middle of the country include northern Illinois and the Chicago area. This would mean highs here in the upper 50s and lower 60s. That would be the coolest highs we've seen in nearly 4 months.

Looking longer range at temperatures and we still see the consistent signal for a cooler than average pattern for the middle of the month. The drop in temperatures might not be as dramatic as the models once advertised but both the 6-10 day and 8-14 day temperature probability forecasts have us outlooked for below average temperatures overall.

Here is my 7 day forecast:

Today: Sunny, breezy, mild High: 78

Saturday: Mostly sunny Low: 60 High: 80

Sunday: Partly to mostly cloudy, sct. showers & t-storms Low: 63 High: 83

Monday: Mostly cloudy, sct. showers/t-storms Low: 68 High: 78

Tuesday: Mostly cloudy, on & off showers Low: 60 High: 63

Wednesday: Mostly cloudy, on & off showers Low: 58 High: 70

Thursday: Mostly cloudy, sct. showers Low: 55 High: 72



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