Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Chicago, IL
FXUS63 KLOT 250824
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Chicago/Romeoville, IL
324 AM CDT WED MAY 25 2016
323 AM CDT
The focus for today and tonight was on timing the highest
potential for storms and their coverage as we enter an unsettled
summer-ish pattern. Storms still appear likely during the mid-
afternoon through early evening period or so...but several factors
present uncertainty on what the coverage will be...as well as
storm chances for the remainder of tonight. The severe threat
appears marginal namely due to the absence of stronger and
Early this morning multiple MCSs are tracking eastward across the
PLains and Missouri River Valley regions with an MCV present
between Omaha and Kansas City that is on a track for our area this
afternoon. Satellite IR imagery has indicated warming cloud tops
with this area and expect a gradual convective weakening to
continue through the morning as this area outruns deeper forcing.
On the note of broader forcing...the synoptic lift over our CWA
this afternoon and evening is fairly minimal with stronger
upper/mid level flow and height falls remaining mainly west and
northwest. Thus convective coverage and any potential for stronger
storms seems hinged on the aforementioned MCV and associated short
wave disturbance maintaining themselves as they track northeast.
High-resolution and convective allowing models /CAMs/ do indicate
this tracking over the region near peak heating time which should
help at least scattered storms...especially given dew points
having increased into the 60s and PWATS in excess of 1.2 inches.
With forecast highs in the lower to mid 80s yielding MLCAPEs of
1000 to 1500 J/kg...have leaned toward the scenario of some re-
intensification of a broken line or scattered storms into north
central Illinois by mid-afternoon and advancing east from there.
The further east the less ideal of an air mass so confidence
lessens on coverage toward Chicago and northwest Indiana and it
is possible that storms become isolated east of I-55 late this
afternoon into evening. A couple storms may spike up to near-
severe or severe levels with a marginal threat of wind or hail.
Behind this wave a 40 kt + southwesterly low-level jet under an
EML advancing into the area will continue the potential for
festering scattered storms. This seems most favored south of I-88
in our area as the nose of this LLJ gradually veers to west-
southwesterly through the night. A few of these could be strong to
severe if they can develop. The setup of moisture
transport/convergence is decent for locally heavy rain in any
convection...but again confidence on coverage is quite low and
have mainly just maintained broadbrushed chance PoPs.
With temperatures potentially being knocked down late this
afternoon into early this evening with some storms...and dew
points holding steady or rising...fog development may occur
330 AM CDT
Thursday through Tuesday...
To be issued shortly.
FOR THE 06Z TAFS...
1226 am...Main concern this period is thunderstorm potential and
timing. Wind directions later this morning into this afternoon
also a concern.
Dry weather expected through early this afternoon as focus is on a
large area convection over the central plains. Models in decent
agreement with this wave lifting northeast across the terminals
later this afternoon into early this evening. How widespread this
activity becomes later today is still somewhat uncertain and it
could also be in a weakening/dissipating stage...especially as it
reaches the Chicago terminals but this feature and timing has been
reasonably consistent for several runs. Despite lower confidence
on coverage...confidence is high for timing which is centered on
00z for the Chicago area terminals...a few hours earlier at rfd.
Additional thunderstorms are possible late tonight into Thursday
morning...potentially from eastern IA through northern and central
IL. While some precip mention will likely be needed with later
forecasts...confidence regarding location and timing is low enough
to stay dry with the 30hr ord taf.
Light southerly winds may diminish further as the gradient weakens
especially over northern central IL early this morning. Southerly
winds are then expected to increase back into the 10kt range by
mid/late morning. But the specific wind directions are
problematic as they may turn more southeasterly at ord/mdw/gyy.
There will likely be a lake breeze this afternoon but how far
inland this moves is uncertain. Complicating the wind directions
will be thunderstorms and perhaps some west or southwest outflow.
Thus a period of southeast winds is possible mid/late afternoon
then shifting more southwest/west with any convection. So changes
to wind directions can be expected with later forecasts.
Low level moisture is increasing this morning with dewpoints into
the lower 60s across central and northwest IL. With a period of
mostly clear skies possible...some light fog in the usual spots is
also possible but not expecting any significant vis restrictions.
128 am...A cold front over northern Lake Michigan will move south
to central portions of the lake this morning and then become
stationary. Low pressure moving northeast across the plains
tonight in Thursday will lift this front back north as a warm
front tonight into Thursday morning. The gradient will tighten
some behind the front with the potential for easterly winds as
high as 15-25kts on the far north end of the lake this evening. A
large trough of low pressure is expected to persist across the
plains through early next week with southerly winds prevailing
across the western lakes region. As warmer and more moist air
spread across the cooler waters...fog will likely develop with
some dense fog possible. cms
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