FIRST THE THURSDAY HEADLINES 

–Backwash rains may mix with some snowflakes tonight before winding down—but the clouds are to hang in there Friday. 

–This weather system has produced healthy snow accumulation across the Upper Midwest with as much as 12″ down at Little Lake, MI in the state’s Upper Peninsula and 12.3″ at Steuben, MI in the UP as well. Hazlehurst, WI has reported 10.3″ and 6″ is down on the Door Peninsula in northeast Wisconsin. 

–We’ve moved into the 23rd consecutive above normal days here in Chicago.  

–THE SNOW DROUGHT CONTINUES HERE. The last time it snowed over an inch in Chicago was 1.3″ back on Dec 22 which makes the Dec 23-January 19 period, with the 0.4″ of snow which has come down in that time, among the 5 least snowy such periods in the 124 years since 1894. And in all that time, only two Dec 23-Jan 19 period have had less snow—in the 1902 and 1894 seasons. 

—Peeks of sun part of Saturday precede a snow threat Sat night and part of Sunday which could put down enough snow to see—but modest by January standards. 

—Of greater interest is a mid-week winter weather system—hardly a SLAM DUNK just yet—but modeled in such a manner we’ll be watching the Tuesday night/Wed period with interest. A northward adjustment in the currently projected path of that system could put Chicago in an interesting position for snow. Climatology—in other words historic weather trends—certainly suggest we’re in a period of the year with snow-producing potential—further reason to at least monitor the mid-week winter weather system’s trek into the Midwest. 

—A SHIFTING PATTERN, with upper steering winds coming in from Canada, continue to suggest colder temps are on the way. While NOT ANYWHERE CLOSE to the kind of cold we saw in December is indicated, we’re still looking at the first BELOW NORMAL TEMPS in a month beginning just past Wednesday next week. The late week temp drop will pull the full week average temp next week close to 12-deg colder than this week. We’ll notice that!! 

HERE’S MY LATEST CHICAGO METRO FORECAST ISSUED THURSDAY 1/18/2023) 

TONIGHT: Rainy spells may mix with wet snowflakes in parts of the area before precip winds down. Breezy and colder with the overcast holding. Low 31. 

FRIDAY: Clouds dominate again, colder and closer to historic mid-January norms. Breezy. High 34. 

FRIDAY NIGHT: Becoming partly cloudy, colder. Low 24. 

SATURDAY: Mixed sun gives way to cloudy skies again by and during the afternoon. Seasonably cold. High 32. 

SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY: Some snow with modest accumulations not out of the question. Snow exits the area Sunday afternoon. Low Saturday night 27. High Sunday 34. 

MONDAY: Partly sunny, near seasonable-level temps. High 34. 

TUESDAY: Clouding over, winds strengthen slowly in the afternoon. Growing prospects for snow at night. High 36. 

WEDNESDAY: Snow likely, windy. High 32. 

THURSDAY: Windy and colder with clouds and passing flurries or possible snow showers. High 27.