CHICAGO – Early in 2023, despite a few wintry days, we continue in a state of snow drought.

Flurries continue to fly in the wake of our Wednesday system that ended up producing a snow total of 4.4 inches at O’Hare and 3.6 inches at Midway.  Still, the seasonal snow total is only a bit over half normal (57%) at 10.6 inches compared to the normal of 18.5 inches now.

The powerful winds due to arrive here Friday are sweeping the prairie provinces of Canada and the northern plains and Rockies. They have prompted a host of advisories there and even a blizzard warning for sections of North Dakota and Minnesota. 

Even as we say goodbye to flurries for a time later this evening and overnight, gusty cold frontal snow showers capable of cutting visibilities sharply at times are going to sweep into Chicago. They could lay down a quick .5-to-1.5 inches amid some 40 mph wind gusts Friday. 

Our current estimate of arrival and duration times from modeling estimates a period of fairly steady snow arriving in the city around 8 to 10 a.m. Friday morning and will fall into the early afternoon. It could look quite wintry at times in the midst of these bursts of wind-driven snow, which could cause some travel issues for parts of the day.

There will be more sporadic snow showers Friday afternoon and evening.

Yet another snow system, this one capable of 2-5 inches accumulations according to an early read on the system, arrives later Saturday morning around midday and continues into the evening.

The system could produce the week’s third round of snow.

A wildcard is a potential for the injection of some lake moisture. It’s not a huge lake setup, but it only takes a little bit to make a difference, and we’ll be monitoring newer data as that system gets closer.

Frigid arctic air is the big headline for next week.

Jet steam winds out of Canada are to usher one of the season’s colder air masses into the area. Temperatures could struggle to get into the teens for highs and we could see single digits at night for as many as four days.

Computer models suggest some light snow is possible for part of Monday, but they have backed off on a Tuesday night/Wednesday snow system to some extent. But we’ll watch this closely. It’s not uncommon for varying model forecast solutions to arise in a pattern like the one arising next week and to find oneself with snow prospects that occasionally disappear from some model runs.


TONIGHT: Flurries wind down this evening. Turning partly cloudy and coder overnight. Low 17.

FRIDAY: Becoming quite windy with clouds returning with gusty snow showers. A quick half inch to inch and half of snow and reduced visibilities are possible with some of the heavier snow showers which are likely to first arrive in the city in the 8 to 10 a.m. time range. Top gusts could reach 40 mph. High 35.

FRIDAY NIGHT: Any lingering snow exits in the evening, some cloud breaks, breezy and cold. Low 18.

SATURDAY and SATURDAY NIGHT: Cloudy, snow developing late morning or midday—then continuing Saturday afternoon and night. Accumulations of 2 to 5″ appear possible. Breezy from the northeast in the afternoon. High 29.  Low Saturday night 18.

MONDAY: Sunshine emerges, but blustery and colder. Some morning snow is possible off the lake in northwest Indiana. Hight 17. 

TUESDAY: Clouding over. Chance of some snow. Cold. High 15.

WEDNESDAY and THURSDAY: Partly sunny—but cold. Highs both days 18.