Last night’s strong cold front brought the one-two punch for those who had to step out the door early on. The first punch, significantly knocking down our temperatures overnight. Shortly after midnight, the Rockford Airport was still reporting temperatures in the upper 60s. Once the cold air began to filter in behind the cold front, temperatures quickly fell into the upper 30s-low 40s by daybreak. The other punch, relating to the round of showers and thunderstorms that tracked into the region for the start of our Friday. Rain chances remain highest into mid-morning. Showers will become more scattered in nature towards mid-day, gradually tapering off during the early afternoon. Once Friday’s rain chances come to a close, the story then switches to the well below-average temperatures we’ll see over the weekend.
Following Friday’s wet start, our region looks to remain dry under a mostly cloudy sky. However, after temperatures tumbled this morning, highs later on today will struggle to make it out of the mid to upper 40s. Which, if you take into account how warm we were late in the day on Thursday, is going to feel significantly colder. Not only will the cloud cover help keep temperatures cold, but we’ll also have that chilly northwesterly wind stick around throughout the day. Winds at times could gust up to 25-30 mph, with the strongest winds being felt between 12PM and 4PM. Fortunately, winds won’t be a bother overnight, as breezy conditions look to stick around for just the evening hours. With that being said, this might make for a bumpy drive home, especially if you’re going to be traveling along east and west roadways. So be sure to take extra caution by keeping a firm grip on your steering wheel.
As far as the weekend is concerned, temperatures are expected to remain well below-average, in the upper 40s. Despite the cold that lies ahead, our weekend looks to begin on a dry note as high pressure expands over the Upper Midwest. Clearing skies overnight, and light north to northwesterly winds will help temperatures bottom out near the 30° mark by Saturday morning. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few of our low-lying spots land in the upper 20s. Saturday’s mostly sunny start will give way to a bit more cloud cover by late in the day as a system inches closer to the region. Model guidance continues to show this system moving in late Saturday night into Sunday morning, bringing rain chances for the end of the weekend.