Temperatures Improve:

It’s been a chilly stretch as of late as temperatures at the Rockford International Airport have peaked in the low 50s each of the last 4 days. Fortunately, all signs point to an improvement in the temperature department starting today as highs will be rather seasonable into the beginning of May. Following Thursday’s scattered round of showers, conditions have dried out some into the early stages of our Friday.

If your daily routine takes you out the door before mid-morning, you’ll already notice the difference in temperatures as the Stateline is waking up in the mid to upper 40s. This warmer start tells the tale for the rest of our day as we’ll see temperatures  quickly soar into the 60s by this afternoon. Similar to Thursday, the best chance for any sun will be during the morning hours as clouds are expected to thicken up.

Weekend Rain:

Quick to follow will be our next shot at some showers which looks to arrive as early as the evening commute hours. If you have plans this evening, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have an umbrella on hand. Guidance then shows another round of scattered showers, even a few embedded thunderstorms sliding in as the sun rises tomorrow morning. Fortunately, this round won’t have the potential to become severe. However, we’ll need to watch and see how it affects the state of our atmosphere.

If the morning showers and thunderstorms linger too long, then the chance for severe weather won’t be as high. This will give the atmosphere a shorter time period to destabilize or “re-energize”. Now, if the morning convection is able to clear the region early enough, the atmosphere will have a better opportunity to “re-charge”, allowing the risk for severe weather to proceed. It’ll be important to keep eye on the forecast, especially if you have any plans Saturday afternoon and evening. 

Severe Outlook:

As of this morning’s update, the Storm Prediction Center has placed half the region (along and west of I-39) under a Marginal Risk while placing the other half (east of I-39) in a Slight Risk. Current thinking suggest that if the atmosphere has time to “re-charge”, severe storms will be capable of producing damaging winds, large-sized hail, and  an isolated tornado or two. Conditions then look to quiet down and cool down a bit for Sunday as highs only peak in the upper 50s. Forecast models do show the chance for a passing shower or two lasting into the end of the weekend.