More Cold to Follow Brief Warmup


Published on January 10 2018 9:07 am
Last Updated on January 10 2018 9:07 am


The recent deep freeze in Illinois likely dominated most residents’ attention, but meteorologist Dan Hicks says when you take a longer timeframe into account, the temperature pattern hasn’t strayed that far from what’s typical for this time of year.

“Overall, it hasn’t averaged very far from normal, but that really doesn’t tell the story, with the periods of warm weather and the periods of unusually cold weather we’ve seen,” said the Freese-Notis Weather meteorologist, tracking temperatures all the way back to early December.

Those fluctuating conditions are climbing again this week, with highs in the 30s and 40s over most of Illinois. Some in southern Illinois might even see the thermometer reach 50 degrees, Hicks told the RFD Radio Network®.

This weekend, though, temperatures will dive once again.

“If you look at the first six or seven days of January, temperatures averaged more than 20 degrees below normal in many parts of the Midwest,” Hicks said. “I think it could go down to 10 to 15 degrees below normal this weekend and early next week.

“Probably not quite as extreme as what we saw early in the month.”

The temperature dips can still be blamed on the weak La Nina that’s still in place in the Pacific Ocean and expected to remain at least until early spring.

“In formulating a spring outlook, you have to continue with the theme of weak to moderate La Nina – which we have right now – being with us into the first part of spring,” Hicks said.

That means cooler-than-normal temperatures in the northern part of the United States, including northern Illinois.

Cold temperatures and frozen ground don’t offer much opportunity to recharge soil-moisture levels, which remain especially low in southwestern Illinois and other areas of the state.