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  • Tim McGill

Feeling More Like Fall Than Florida

Temps Drop Along With Dew Points

It feels like we skipped June and jumped right into July lately. So far this month is running nearly 9° above average. We have seen 6 days this month out of 13 with a high of 90° or more. On average we normally see just four 90° days in June. There have been a total of 7 days this year with a high of 90° or more. On average we normally see seventeen 90° days for an entire year. Our first 90° day on average comes on June 8th. We had our first 90° day this year on May 24th.

We get a bit of a break from the recent heat and humidity for the next few days. The HRRR model has our highs today topping out in the lower 80s for most areas with the exception of the lakefront. Highs lakeside should be in the lower to middle 70s.

Perhaps even more importantly the dew points have dropped dramatically compared to Saturday. Dew points give meteorologists the best measurement of moisture in the air. They were near 70° on Saturday and today they fall into the lower 50s. Tuesday's dew points drop into the 40s. It will feel like fall by Wednesday morning as lows dip into the lower to middle 50s. After feeling like nearly 100° on Saturday with the high heat and humidity, it will feel almost 50° cooler come Wednesday morning.

A north, northeast wind will deliver this cooler, more comfortable air the next few days. Those winds will whip up big waves and strong rip currents. A beach hazards statement is in effect from 7 a.m today until 4 p.m. this afternoon for waves building up to 3 to 6 feet along with dangerous rip currents.

Wave heights might remain high into at least early Wednesday. Wave heights are forecast to still be near five feet through the middle of the week.

The water temperatures are responding to our warm start to summer. The water temperatures at our beaches are now in the lower 70s.

The National Blend Of Models has a couple of cooler days forecast for us before we build back some heat and humidity by the end of the week. We slip into the 70s for highs Tuesday and Wednesday but get back to near 90° by Thursday.

Saturday's Soaking Helped But More Rain Needed

I mentioned in Saturday's post that a few spots could get soaked with some heavy rain. O'Hare set a record for rainfall Saturday with 1.5". Much of the area picked up about a half inch to nearly an inch of rain.

While we welcome any drought relief, we still need a lot more rain. O'Hare is now down about a third of an inch below average for rainfall in June and down still over 8 inches since March 1st.

Here is a short recap of my drought update (before Saturday's rain) from last week:

The U.S. Drought Monitor says 8.52% of the state is in a moderate drought. That is an increase of 1.6% compared to last week's analysis. 20.89% of the state is considered "abnormally dry" which is an increase from 16.97% last week. "Abnormally dry" is just one level away from a moderate drought. The amount of Illinois in a severe drought remains unchanged at 4.58%.

There is a slight chance for an isolated shower or thunderstorm today but the GFS model suggests the next decent chance for rain doesn't arrive until Thursday night into Friday.

The latest GFS model total rainfall forecast through Saturday morning shows a range of rainfall from about a half inch to nearly an inch and a half possible. That would help to put at least another dent in the drought.

The long range precipitation probability forecasts offers some substantial hope for more help with the drought. The latest 6-10 day forecast has us outlooked for above average precipitation overall from June 19th through June 23rd. The longer range 8-14 day forecast also favors us for above average precipitation overall from June 21st through June 27th.

Cooling Off To About Average

The longer range temperature probability forecasts both have us outlooked for near normal temperatures (lower 80s) for the last part of June. The west continues to have the highest probabilities for above average temperatures. The 6-10 day forecast has outlooked us for about average temperatures overall from June 19th through June 23rd. The longer range 8-14 day forecast favors us for about average temperatures overall from June 21st through June 27th too.

The even longer range Subseasonal Experiment (SubX) temperature anomaly forecast favors us for a warmer than average end to June and start to July. The average highs for this period are in the lower to middle 80s. The temperature anomaly forecast for the week ending July 2nd has us outlooked for above average temperatures overall. The forecast for the following week ending on July 9th also has Chicago outlooked for above average temperatures overall too.

Here is my 7 day forecast:

Today: Sunny start then partly cloudy, a bit breezy High: 83 (75 lakeside)

Tuesday: Mostly sunny Low: 61 High: 77 (72 lakeside)

Wednesday: Mostly sunny Low: 57 High: 78 (71 lakeside)

Thursday: Mostly sunny Low: 59 High: 89

Friday: Partly/mostly cloudy, sct. showers/t-storms possible Low: 68 High: 89

Saturday: Mostly sunny Low: 63 High: 82 (cooler lakeside)

Sunday: Mostly sunny Low: 61 High: 81 (cooler lakeside)



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