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Warmer, but Turning Cooler Sunday.

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As the first map on the right shows, we have experienced quite a warm-up compared to this time 24 hours ago. With daytime highs expected to top out in the 70s this afternoon, that is quite a change from the 50s we had just yesterday afternoon. Friday will be warmer yet with daytime highs expected to be in the 80s before the next cold front arrives during the day Saturday. Our nights will also be much milder with morning lows near 50 tonight and in the 50s for Friday night. That will be quite the contrast to the near/below freezing temperatures of the last several nights.

However, keep in mind that our normal last freeze date is the end of March. Also, if you look at the second map on the right, it is apparent that we have a good chance of temperatures running below normal going into the last week of the month. I say all that just to remind the gardeners out there that we are not out of the woods yet regarding a freeze or a heavy frost.

The next cold front mentioned above is still on schedule to arrive during the early afternoon hours of Saturday. Brisk northerly winds behind the boundary will bring much cooler air back into the state for the latter half of the weekend and into early next week. In fact, temperatures will likely only be in the 50s for daytime highs which is well below the lower 60s that is normal. Most of the shower activity looks to be post frontal and primarily for the more northern counties as we go through the Saturday night/Sunday/Monday time frame. We can certainly use a good, widespread, soaking rain event, but that does not appear likely with this particular system.

By the middle of the coming week, there are large discrepancies in the longer range guidance. One set, the GFS, keeps us basically dry with the next storm system producing any showers/storms mainly east of the state and warming us up considerably. However, the normally more conservative and more reliable ECMWF has arrived at a far different solution with another cool-down arriving by the middle of the week. It is also accompanied by a slow moving disturbance aloft just to our west producing some widespread, potentially heavy rainfall from the middle part of the week till weeks end.

With the above in mind, will be reluctant to warm things up too quickly next week and will maintain at least a slight chance of showers beginning Wednesday until better model consistency resolves some of those issues. It may be a couple of more days before this is all sorted out.

So, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot

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