Heat, Storms & Solar Eclipse Countdown

Good Wednesday everyone! A little bit of heat and humidity will be present across the area today along with chances for showers and thunderstorms early this afternoon and then again later tonight.

For today we'll be increasing our clouds allowing for a mostly cloudy day along with southeast winds around 7MPH. Some disturbances will be moving through the area today starting as early as 1 or 2PM where some popup showers and possibly some thunderstorms will be possible. It won't be until later tonight though where another line of thunderstorms could enter the area, mainly after 7PM. The threat for severe weather is possible, but won't be widespread. In the strong to severe thunderstorms, the primarily risks will be damaging winds and hail. A few heavy downpours are possible, but flash flooding should be minimized as these storms will be moving through fairly quickly. Overall, the early convection could downplay the risks if the atmosphere is not allowed to destabilize enough. Therefor a marginal risk has been warranted for the area.

Is everyone ready for the solar eclipse of 2017? I'm fairly confident that many of us will not be missing this event. Even if you end up looking briefly, it still counts as participating! We only have FIVE (5) days left until Monday August 21st. While we are not in the path of totality, 89-90% (depending on location) of the sun will become partially covered. Staring the first contact here in the Sauk Valley area as early as 11:49AM, with the maximum (89-90% covered) at 1:15pm, and ending at 2:38PM. As of today, our cloud cover forecasts have varied. But the majority of them have been indicating that a few clouds may be present. GFS doesn't favor completely covered, but higher chances for clouds are possible at this time.

Let's delve into the next three days briefly. A chance for early/lingering showers and thunderstorms early Thursday is possible. Otherwise we'll clear up by the evening hours and begin to warm up in time for the weekend. A slight chance for a shower and thunderstorm on Saturday, but overall a dry weekend may be possible with temperatures in the mid 80s.