As moderate to severe drought conditions persist across much of northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin, the extended outlook offers up a little hope for the chance for precipitation by the end of the month.
Isolated thunderstorms were fairly common last week but the rainfall was not evenly distributed, leaving many across the region high and dry. High temperatures reached 90 degrees, or higher, 10 days out of the first 13 of the month! Monday’s high temperature was 88 degrees. After a mostly dry weekend, the following days look to offer up a bit of a break from the humidity as the high heat and humidity are pushed to the west under a strong ridge of high pressure. This will leave temperatures in the mid 80s through mid-week, but rising back into the low 90s Thursday as surface winds shift a little more to the southwest. A cold front will move into the region late Thursday night and Friday, bringing with it a chance for showers and thunderstorms. Some of those storms could be a little on the stronger side, something to monitor in the coming days.
Looking beyond the upcoming week, the longer range outlook offers up some hope for a better chance for precipitation; better than what we’ve experienced so far this month. The strong ridge of high pressure that has covered much of the country begins to break down, bringing the jet stream more towards the middle of the country. This will, in turn, place the storm track (jet stream) closer to the Midwest and Great Lakes. This change in our jet stream pattern could bring us a higher chance for precipitation heading towards the last week of the month. It may also give us a little more of a break from some of the summer heat we’ve been experiencing as of late.
The 8-14 day outlook from the Climate Prediction Center shows a higher probability for above average precipitation for northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin, as well as a higher probability for below average temperatures. Average highs towards the end of the month should be in the low 80s.