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  • Tim McGill

Thanksgiving Forecast Within Reach

Friday's Forecast First

Less than seven days from the holiday and starting to get some confidence in the forecast for next Thursday. Models have been fairly consistent in suggesting a relatively mild and dry day. More on that below.

Let's focus first on Friday. The trade off today is less wind but also less warmth. Yesterday's high soared to 66° at O'Hare which is 20° above average for the date. So far this November is among the top ten warmest on record. The warmth on Thursday was achieved with the help of some gusty southwest winds. Gusts at O'Hare topped 40 mph and along the lakefront gusts topped 50 mph. A lot less wind today with gusts at most just over 20 mph. A cold front sliding through early today though will keep our highs about 5° to 10° cooler. Southwest winds will be replaced by northwest breezes. Highs today should be in the upper 50s to near 60°.

Today will be the warmest day for at least the next week or so. We fall into the 40s for highs from Saturday through Wednesday next week. Models are hinting at a small warm up towards the end of next week that would push our highs to near 50° on Thanksgiving.

Flirting With 50° On Thanksgiving

Average highs for around Thanksgiving are in the lower to middle 40s. The GFS model shows temperatures in the upper 40s by the holiday. The models have been running a couple of degrees too cool so I think we could easily hit 50° next Thursday. A nice day to throw around a football or walk off some of that holiday feast since it should also be dry.

First Few Blue States In A While

I commented in yesterday's post on the lack of blue in both longer range temperature probability forecasts. None of the lower 48 was forecast for below average temperatures overall through Thanksgiving into early December. Today we have the return of a few blue states. The 6-10 day temperature probability forecast has us outlooked for above average temperatures from November 25th through the 29th with a pocked of blue over the central Rockies. The 8-14 day forecast from November 27th through the December 3rd wipes out the blue and favors the entire country for above average temperatures during the period.

Not Quite As Wet This Weekend

Dry weather will prevail through the end of the week. The GFS model has removed the rain it was calling for on Saturday in previous model runs. Rain is still in Sunday's forecast but it will be light. There is a chance early in the day it could mix with some light snow but no significant snow expected. The best chance of rain comes late next Tuesday into Wednesday. At the onset of that round of rain we could also see some snow mix in late Monday night into early Tuesday.

Snow Not Out Of The Question

The European model continues to squeeze out the most snow between now and Thanksgiving. Most of that snow would come Tuesday. The model is laying out a dusting in the city but over 2 inches in some of the northern and northwestern suburbs. The GFS model snowfall accumulation forecast squeezes out light snow early Sunday well west of the city and then adds more late Monday into Tuesday further northwest but sparing the city and most of the suburbs. Stay tuned.

Drying Out By Early December

The longer range precipitation probabilities shows a trend towards a more dry pattern by the start of December. The 6-10 day forecast from November 25th through November 29th has us outlooked for above average precipitation overall but on the low end of the probabilities. The even longer range 8-14 day forecast from November 27th through the December 3rd has us favored for below average precipitation overall.

Here is my 7 day forecast:

Today: Partly to mostly cloudy, a bit breezy High: 59

Saturday: Mostly cloudy, colder Low: 36 High: 47

Sunday: Cloudy, chance of light rain mainly south Low: 34 High: 44

Monday: Mostly sunny Low: 30 High: 43

Tuesday: Light rain/snow mix early then light rain Low: 33 High: 46

Wednesday: Partly to mostly sunny Low: 39 High: 49

Thursday: Partly to mostly cloudy Low: 36 High: 50



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