Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Chicago, IL

Home | Current Version | Previous Version | Graphics & Text | Print | Product List | Glossary On
Versions: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50
FXUS63 KLOT 212323

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Chicago/Romeoville, IL
623 PM CDT Fri Jul 21 2017


Severe thunderstorm threat increasing across northern Illinois
late this afternoon within a strongly unstable and moderately
sheared airmass. Couple areas of concern noted per regional obs
and satellite imagery. First, an outflow boundary is draped from
the northern suburbs of Chicago WSW to near the Quad Cities this
afternoon. Satellite imagery reveals changes in the
characteristics of the cloud cover along the boundary suggesting
weakening convective inhibition and would expect thunderstorm
coverage to further increase over the next hour or two along this
boundary. Moderately strong deep layer bulk shear would support
supercell development, and low LCL heights and increased SRH along
the aforementioned boundary suggests there is some threat for
tornadoes this afternoon/evening.

Second area of concern is a warm frontal boundary draped from near
the Quad Cities southeast through near Pontiac to Danville.
Cumulus not really well defined along this boundary at the moment
but there are some thunderstorms developing just south within the
warm sector. If further development occurs along the front,
Bunkers right moving supercell vectors oriented parallel to the
boundary suggest that storms could become latched onto the
boundary which would also be an area of concern for

Beyond the next couple hours, strengthening low level jet this
evening will result in renewed thunderstorm development to our
west with training thunderstorms producing heavy rain and a
heightened flooding concern, especially given saturated soils in



255 PM CDT

Through Tonight...

Main forecast concerns/challenges continue to be tied to
additional thunderstorms which are likely today into tonight, with
severe and flash flooding threat likely this evening and

Feeling fairly confident this afternoon that much of northern
Illinois and northwest Indiana will be right in the center of much
of the thunderstorm activity during this period. Despite earlier
guidance and even some of the global models showing a more
northerly track with any convection today/tonight, persistence
seemed to be the best route to take with the forecast. Once again,
no real big change to the large scale pattern, along with
moisture/instability axis still focused right into the CWA. With
this in mind, a more southerly track with any upstream development
appears to be the most likely scenario, and have updated the
forecast to reflect this current thought.

Latest radar imagery showing thunderstorms continuing to slowly
propagate through northeast Iowa and southwest Wisconsin. General
motion with the current storms just northwest of Rockford has been
mainly to the east. Although this will likely continue east, am
monitoring for possible development along its southern edge that
could clip more of far northern Illinois this afternoon. This
possibility seems reasonable, as instability continues to rebound
further north in the high dewpoint air. If this occurs, at this
time, it should stay tied to areas near the IL/WI border. However,
will continue to monitor for a possible continued southerly
development of this leading edge, into areas along/near the I-88
corridor in northeast Illinois this afternoon. A strong/severe
threat would be likely with these storms, along with heavy

Expect current thunderstorms across IA to further develop quickly
over the next couple of hours, in around surface trough and
synoptic boundary. Once again, expect a east southeast movement
through the afternoon and early evening right into northern
Illinois and northwest Indiana. As these storms move east this
afternoon intensification likely as they encounter a very moist
and unstable air mass in place over eastern Iowa, northern
Illinois, and northwest Indiana. Development likely into forward
propagating line of storms appears likely with a damaging wind
threat appearing highly probable by early this evening across
north central Illinois. No change in the environment throughout
the CWA, so feel fairly confident of this line of storms to
continue east southeast through the remaining areas in northern
Illinois and northwest Indiana through mid to late this evening,
with a damaging wind threat also continuing. At this time, all
locations in northern Illinois and northwest Indiana are in the
path of these storms. Given the environment/instability, can`t
rule out a high end wind threat of 60- 80 MPH with the strongest
storms. Although high winds will be the main threat, a tornado
threat will remain. This is especially the case as a synoptic
boundary and outflow boundary will be situated across the region,
which could act to support a locally higher chance of a tornado.
Torrential rainfall will be possible with any storm and with the
initial storms this evening, expect more of a progressive movement
with the storms. This could limit the initial flash flood risk,
but don`t want to downplay this too much as a quick 1 to 3 inches
will be very possible this evening. This would fall within the
Flash Flood Watch area, and locations that have already saturated
conditions, with flash flooding still a definite possibility.

Additional thunderstorms appearing likely overnight, with
increasing LLJ and boundaries in place. Focus continues to be in
the watch area in northern Illinois, north of I-80. Additional
torrential rainfall will be possible during this time, with a
pattern of training storms a definite possibility. This will keep
concerns high for flash flooding overnight. No change to the
current watch, but will monitor the possibility of areas just to
the south and east of the watch to get into the location of
persistent development.



402 AM CDT

Saturday through Thursday...

Saturday afternoon heat and humidity will again push apparent
temperatures toward or over heat advisory criteria with the support
of southwest flow ahead of an approaching frontal zone.  Model QPF
fields and MSLP trends reflect disagreement in the timing and low
level forcing related to the passage of the front, perhaps due in
part to the potential stabilizing effects from widespread convective
activity expected tonight and in the predawn and morning hours on
Saturday. Still feel that, at the least, isolated to scattered
activity is possible areawide for the Saturday afternoon period,
but toward evening and overnight the focus shifts mostly south of
the Chicago metro area.

A considerable pattern change is then in store, with Sunday looking
like a transition day toward drier weather with cooler temperatures
and lower dewpoints as an upper trough digs over the area and a
broad surface ridge approaches the Great Lakes from the northwest.
Sunday appears to be just a bit cooler and drier than Saturday,
but the change will be more evident on Monday and Tuesday when
some locations do not escape the 70s. By mid to late week the
ridge likely will move far enough east to allow more typical
warmth and moisture to start streaming back into the area, but at
this range we do not appear positioned for a late-week repeat of
the recent very warm heat and high humidity.



For the 00Z TAFs...

Concerns are on another round of more widespread thunderstorms
this evening, then on resolving how much coverage and how long
any additional storms linger overnight.

Timing of storms across NW IL if they maintain their current track
and speed arrive into RFD around 0z, and to ORD by 2z. Expect
another round of gusty NW winds that will likely flip over to NE
before shifting back to the synoptic SSE, along with at least
brief IFR vsby. Coverage will be higher during this period
compared to earlier this afternoon.

The big question after this is on coverage of additional
development after midnight. Hi resolution guidance is in very good
agreement about the redevelopment of storms occurring, but
disagree how quickly they will shift south of the Chicago
terminals. Expect heavy rain with these storms at times.

Everything will be south of the terminals by daybreak, though
possibly lingering across the southern tracon a bit longer.
Concern on Saturday will shift to wind direction and speed. There
will likely be a shift to NE but confidence is low on when it will
occur. Storm chances are low over the terminals, but possible
where the boundary ends up, possibly over central IL.



1251 PM CDT

Strong to severe thunderstorms are expected over the southern
third of the lake this evening, with gusts in excess of 30 kt
certainly plausible, along with heavy rain.

Otherwise, Thermal circulations exist this afternoon across
nearshore areas with a broad southeast wind regime in place. A low
pressure trough will cross the lake tonight with the main low
center not expected to cross the lake until later Saturday which
will maintain the east wind component until the low moves south of
the lake Saturday night.

Once the associated low shifts east, the flow around to the north
where it will remain and gradually increase into early next week, to
the point that small craft advisories may be needed along the
southern shores on Monday with a full northerly fetch wind. The
gradient then appears to relax again on Tuesday through mid to late



IL...Flash Flood Watch...ILZ003-ILZ004-ILZ005-ILZ006-ILZ008-ILZ010-
     until 9 AM Saturday.




WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/NWSCHICAGO is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.