The latest drought monitor shows little change in moderate, severe and extreme drought conditions across much of Illinois and Wisconsin. In a way that’s good as conditions are not getting worse, but they’re also not getting any better. Bottom line – we need the rain still.
There will be a few showers from time to time this weekend but it looks like the heaviest rain will fall south of the Stateline, across west-central and central Illinois. Thick cloud cover blanketed the skies Thursday afternoon holding temperatures in the mid to upper 60s. The official high in Rockford only reached 69 degrees. The last time the temperature was in the 60s in Rockford was May 27th. The record cold high (coldest high temperature) for today, July 8th, is 64 degrees set back in 2009. Temperatures will warm a little for the weekend, remaining the mid and upper 70s as the warmth settles a little further to the south.
Low pressure rounding an upper level ridge out west will move southeast through the Plains, settling into the Midwest Friday afternoon and evening. Thunderstorms are likely to form ahead of the low, stretching from Iowa, western Illinois and Missouri where strong to severe thunderstorms are likely. An isolated shower is possible early Friday locally, but our rain chances remain low during that time. With a warm front and low focused to the southwest, this is where the higher rainfall totals are likely to fall. There, rainfall totals are likely to exceed an inch or two. Further north, light rain is likely but it will be more scattered throughout the weekend.
Rain showers may increase a little more Saturday night into Sunday as the low moves into central Illinois. Winds are still expected to remain from the east during the afternoon, holding temperatures down in the mid 70s.