Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Chicago, IL

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FXUS63 KLOT 210857

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Chicago/Romeoville, IL
357 AM CDT Mon Aug 21 2017

345 AM CDT

Through Tonight...

Multiple items of interest for today and tonight`s forecast. Have
added further time refinement to thunderstorm potential, which is
trending more in two time periods...1.) from mid-morning through
early afternoon and potentially more so western/southern forecast
area and 2.) mid-evening onward tonight areawide, with heaviest
rainfall totals likely across north central Illinois. Also given
heightened interest in sky cover forecasts for today`s eclipse,
spent additional time collaborating that, and it does look like
there is potential for thinning of clouds spreading from west to
east during the early afternoon.

The large, mainly unorganized area of thunderstorms across
central Iowa as of 330 am continues to creep eastward on the nose
of a 35 kt low-level jet. While there is a subtle short wave, it
is quite low amplitude, and as such this convection may struggle
to readily organize into an MCS. Even if it were, it would likely
ease slightly south of east, more so favoring the I-74 corridor of
Illinois. There is potential for an MCV to emanate eastward out
of this convection, not all that different from yesterday, except
would be passing earlier in the day. All this said, it does not
lead to the highest confidence in storms this morning, and feel
the better chance/coverage if they are able to make it into the
area is south of a Dixon-to-Joliet-to-Valparaiso line...basically
along the deeper instability gradient. A few stronger storms
through early afternoon may be seen given the modest instability
(MUCAPEs of 2000 J/kg) and very high moisture (1.70"+ PWATs). The
main threat would be isolated 50+ mph wind gusts through mainly
precipitation loading, and if any were to organize/congeal. In
addition, heavy rainfall/localized flooding would be a threat,
especially across Benton County, which saw 2-3+ inches of rainfall
early this morning.

Regarding cloud cover, the Iowa convection has produced a huge
area of convective debris cirrus that is drifting over the CWA.
Would expect this to stick around most of the morning given the
upper level westerly flow and sustainability to the driving
convection. By eclipse time (~12pm-230pm), high and probably even
some mid clouds look likely given forecast RH/PWATs and high-res
synthetic satellite imagery. However there is certainly potential
for thinning from west to east behind the convective remnants/MCV
that inch their way east-southeast this morning. That thinning, or
even some breaks in cloudiness, could occur during the eclipse
time, especially the latter half of it. That all said, forecasting
cirrus trends is very challenging and not routine. The eclipse,
clouds or not, should support temperatures leveling off or a small
dip for a 1-2 hour early afternoon period. Highs are forecast in
the mid 80s, and if some more sun is realized, upper 80s to around
90 is attainable.

The rest of the afternoon into early evening has the forecast area
under subtle short wave ridging, so there looks to be a defined
lull/break in regional convection. By mid-evening, the approaching
upper trough and associated height falls will support forcing for
ascent in a broad zone ahead of the cold front. Convection should
result from Wisconsin southwest to Kansas/Missouri by mid-
evening. Isolated development ahead of this into northern Illinois
will become more likely by late evening as the modest to strong
low-level jet veers. Storms may organize into a forward
propogating MCS given the mid-level wind field and shear
orientation, as well as support of a couple CAM solutions. So the
SPC slight risk for mainly severe winds continues in the northern
Illinois part of the CWA. Will need to watch if any small scale
WAA wings were to develop ahead of the main activity, as training
storms would present a flooding issue given such high ambient
moisture. Even without training, rainfall rates may be enough to
cause at least localized flooding. Have mentioned heavy rainfall
possible in the forecast for north central Illinois tonight.



326 AM CDT

Tuesday through Sunday...

Tuesday will be a transition day as the pattern shifts from zonal
flow aloft to more highly amplified as a deep upper low settles into
sern Canada, broad long wave troughing develops over the ern CONUS
while upper ridging builds over the Rockies.  This will set up cool
nwly flow aloft over the midwest with the cold front pushing quickly
to the south and east of the local area and high pressure builds out
of south-central Canada and spreads across the northern plains.  By
Wednesday, sfc high pressure will spread across the region while
nwly flow persists aloft.  This will set up an extended period of
dry weather with below normal temperatures.  For Tuesday through the
weekend, high temps will generally be in the 70s across the region.
A prevailing north component  to the wind field will keep temps
along the lakefront in the lower 70s while inland locations should
climb into the middle to upper 70s.  The coolest day of the period
should be Thursday as north to northeast winds bring the coolest air
into the area and lakefront locations may see temps only in the
upper 60s while inland locations only see lower to middle 70s, which
would be about 10 degrees below normal.  As the surface high drifts
east we should see a return to south-southeast surface winds and a
gradual moderation in temps late in the week and into the weekend,
with temperatures returning back closer normal for late August.


For the 06Z TAFs...

Aviation forecast concerns for Chicago area airports today and
tonight are:

- Scattered showers with a couple storms nearby through 07Z

- Returning shower and storm chances by late morning, though the
  highest storm chances by far look to be overnight Monday night

- Winds varying between southeast and southwest through the
  morning, though light in speed.

Scattered showers and storms forced by an upper level disturbance
will continue to shift east away from the TAF sites by 07Z or so.
Under these are brief heavy downpours with IFR visibility. In the
wake of these, rain-cooled air coupled with the humid conditions
could allow for fog to develop, most likely across north central
Illinois (RFD and DPA areas). Confidence in this is low, as
cirrus should be spreading overhead by 09Z, which may limit how
low visibility can get, though some IFR fog is certainly

Storms across western/central Iowa early this morning will track
east-southeast with other scattered development across that
state. These storm will be driven on a strong low-level jet, and
as such expect the nose of that to be the primary focus. This will
weaken some after daybreak and storms should show a similar
trend though it may be very gradual. There is low confidence in
the forward speed of any of these storms and just what coverage
activity will be as it moves into/over northern Illinois during
the morning/early afternoon. At least showers and possibly will
likely be near RFD during the mid-late morning.

There should be a gap from roughly mid-afternoon into the evening
for storm coverage across the local area, with storms developing
from Minnesota through Missouri/Kansas ahead of the system cold
front. This front will track into the area and high shower and
storm coverage is likely ahead of the front. This is most favored
overnight for the TAF sites. Storms could be near ORD and MDW as
early as 03Z this evening, but have favored after 06Z.



326 AM CDT

A weak trough of low pressure extends across the upper Great Lakes
with an associated frontal boundary extending southwest to low
pressure over the western plains. The front will remain nearly
stationary through Tuesday evening. High pressure building out of
central Canada will force the front south down Lake Michigan Monday
night and pushing south of the lake by Tuesday afternoon.
Winds will turn northerly and strengthen following the frontal
passage, with winds and waves reaching Small Craft Advisory levels
tuesday and Tuesday night, especially for the Indiana nearshore
waters. at this point, it looks like the Illinois nearshore waters
may remain just under Small Craft Advisory levels.  High pressure
will then park over the upper Midwest through midweek and gradually
spread east through the rest of the week and into the weekend.  As
the high spreads across the lake, winds should diminish, but a
generally northerly component to the wind field should persist into
the weekend.





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