We have quite a weather week ahead!

A mammoth winter storm system coming together for a large part of the country. In Chicago, the storm’s impact will be in the form are heavy rains and high winds.

The wind and rains are set to commence by lunchtime Wednesday and continuing Wednesday night with the potential for embedded thunderstorms.

How much rain will we get?

Our in-house analysis of a suite of model precip forecasts suggests rainfalls of 1.20-1.60″ may be widespread. If so, this would be the metro area’s heaviest precip event since 1.58″ fell Dec 13-15.

How strong will the wind be?

In addition, this system is to hit with wind. Gusts topping 35 mph may lock in from the east/northwest Wednesday—then shift WSW and gust to 50 mph Thursday—reaching the threshold for damage if that prediction holds.  

Ice may also be an issue

A significant ice storm appears to be coming together—with icing which may well reach into sections of northern Illinois just north and northwest of Chicago. It’s close enough for us to monitor closely. With strong ENE winds due to come off mid-30-deg lake waters, that could spare Chicago ice—but leave residents north and northwest of the city vulnerable to icing.

Beyond Chicago

The mammoth winter storm system will likely to produce a huge swath of heavy snow from the Rockies across the northern Midwest—including the Twin Cities and central and northern Wisconsin—snow delivered with powerhouse winds which may bring conditions there to near blizzard levels.