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  • Tim McGill

Winter Still On Hold

About Or Above Average

We sometimes hesitate to dwell on these quiet starts to winter because of the fear that we will "jinx" the season and pay a price for this temporary respite later on. It's hard though not to recognize the tranquil trend seen by the models for the next several days. December is only going on four days old but it is running about 2.2° above average and that number will be going up by the end of next week.

More on next week's warm up below. Today's highs should climb into the lower to middle 40s. Average highs for this time of year are around 39°.

A cold front will come through late today and set us up for a seasonably cold weekend. This shot of colder air only lasts a couple of days and then we warm well above average next week. The GFS model temperature anomaly forecast for next Thursday shows the vast majority of the country will enjoy temperatures between 5° to nearly 25° above average. The Chicago area will be around 15° to 20° above average according to this forecast. That would mean highs at least in the lower 50s.

Mixed Snow Signals

There are a few chances at light precipitation over the next few days but nothing too exciting until possibly the end of next week. A week disturbance moving through tonight could squeeze out some sprinkles or freezing drizzle overnight. After that there is a chance for a few flurries on Sunday but both chances of precipitation are very small. Models are honing in on a system for late next Friday into Saturday. The GFS model meteogram suggests this will be a mainly rain event. Hope is not lost for you snow lovers though. The European model suggests some snow from this system.

The ten day accumulated snowfall forecasts from both the GFS model and the the European model have some mixed snowfall signals.

The GFS model doesn't have any accumulating snowfall for the next ten days ending on a week from this Sunday.

The European model is laying down a swath of snow across northern Illinois with total snowfall accumulation of two to four inches mainly north and west of the city but some minor accumulation in Chicago itself. This would mainly fall a week from Saturday. We will have to wait and see how the models end up resolving their differences as this system approaches.

Warm Up Next Week

We really can't complain about a couple of colder days this weekend. Our highs will actually be right around average Saturday and Sunday. We have a slow but steady warm up coming next week. Highs will warm through Thursday when we top 50°.

The longer range temperature probability forecasts suggest we will be relatively mild into the middle of the month. The 6-10 day temperature probability forecast has us outlooked for above average temperatures overall from December 9th through December 13th. The longer range 8-14 day forecast from December 11th through the 17th also has us favored for above average temperatures overall.

Relatively Dry Pattern To Continue

The weather pattern going back to November has been relatively quiet and the result is a deficit in rainfall and snowfall. We are running about an inch and a half below average (-1.52") in terms of rainfall since November 1st. We are down about an inch and a half below average (-1.4") in terms of snowfall for the period too.

The longer range precipitation probabilities forecast favors us for near normal precipitation overall through the middle of the month. The 6-10 day forecast from December 9th through December 13th has us outlooked for about average precipitation overall. The 8-14 day forecast from December 11th through December 14th also has about average overall.

We Have A Winner!

Jack Janozik of Oak Forest gets a both a set of Midland X-TALKER two-way radios and an emergency crank weather radio. He checked out my winter forecast for Chicago and qualified for the prizes generously supplied by the folks at Midland Radio.

Congratulations Jack!

Here is my 7 day forecast:

Today: Partly to mostly sunny, a bit breezy High: 43

Saturday: Partly to mostly sunny Low: 28 High: 41

Sunday: Partly to mostly cloudy, a few flurries possible Low: 28 High: 40

Monday: Partly to mostly sunny Low: 29 High: 40

Tuesday: Partly to mostly sunny Low: 28 High: 45

Wednesday: Partly to mostly sunny Low: 33 High: 48

Thursday: Partly to mostly sunny Low: 36 High: 52



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