The clock is ticking on January, 2023 which ends at midnight tonight as the cloudiest January on the books —and among the 7% MILDEST, the current cold spell notwithstanding.

72% of meteorological winter days—45 of them—have finished with above normal temps. Only 17 have come in below normal—today being one of them.

January 2023 will rank 10th warmest of the 152 Januarys on the books placing it among the 7% of warmest Januarys. January 2023 finishes more than 7-deg above normal and nearly 12-deg warmest than a year ago.

Together, Dec and Jan rank 24th warmest of all such periods (152 of them) since 1871. That means, even with the arctic blast around Christmas and the one currently in control, this season comes in among Chicago warmest 16% of Dec/Feb periods.

Chicagoans ventured out into the month’s coldest temps today. Lows dropped to 1-below at O’Hare and +3 at Midway and only rose to 12 at O’Hare and 13 at Midway—-well below the normal of 31-deg for the date.

Tuesday produced 97% of its possible sun. But that came at the end of a record cloudy month in which only 18% of the city’s possible sunshine occurred. That 18% tally sets a new record for the cloudiest January on Chicago books since sunshine records began 129 years ago in 1894. The previous record cloudiest January occurred in 1998 when just 20% of January’s possible sun was recorded.

A cold night’s ahead—though daytime times will ease a bit Wed and Thu. But a windy blast of arctic air hits for a day Friday before a huge pattern realignment brings milder than normal temps back onto the Chicago weather scene this weekend through next week and into the weekend which follows.

More “whiplash” temp swings lie ahead. While temps this week are to run 12-deg colder than last week and 10-deg below normal. Modeling suggests temp will surge 16-deg next week and will come in more than 4-deg above normal.

Full forecast details at the WGN Weather Center

TUESDAY NIGHT: Clear and cold with brisk winds lowering wind chills sub-zero for a number of hours. Thermometer reading drop to 5-above in the city—but to 5 to 10-below coldest inland locations.

WEDNESDAY: Sunny, breezy and not quite as cold with clouds arriving later in the day. High 27.

WED NIGHT: Clouds scatter, not quite as cold. Low 17.

THURSDAY: Partly sunny with winds picking up in the afternoon after shifting northwesterly. High 31—but with readings falling into the 20s later in the day.

FRIDAY: AN ARCTIC CHILL’S BACK FOR A DAY. A good deal of sunshine, windy and colder. Temps 16-deg colder than Thursday. Lake effect clouds and snow showers possible in sections of northwest Indiana. High 15.

SATURDAY: A good deal of cloudiness, turning windy and not as cold. Winds gust above 30 mph. High 33.

SUNDAY: Early sun gives way to incoming clouds, breezy and milder. Temps break above freezing again. High 37.

MONDAY: More cloudy than not, mild for the season. High 41.

TUESDAY: Cloudy and windy. Chance of rain or possible mixed rain and snow showers. High 41.

WEDNESDAY: Mostly cloudy, modestly colder—but still above normal. High 37.