Chicago recorded its first 80-degree day in six months Tuesday and a second is likely for Wednesday.
This year’s opening 80-deg high beats the average arrival time by more than two weeks. The average first date for an 80-deg temp in Chicago over the past 150 years has been on or about April 27. And if you look only at the period since 1943, when Midway became the city’s official observation site changing to O’Hare in 1980, the first 80 has arrived on or about April 21. That puts today’s 80-deg readings two to three weeks early.
Not only is our first 80+-deg temp here, it’s a reading likely to come within just a few degrees of the 1929 record set on this date (April 6th) back in 1929. It’s Chicago’s first official 80 in the six months since an 82-deg high this past October 9.
The desperately dry Chicago area, with just 41% of its normal climatological spring rain (since March 1) to date, just 1.25″ of rain versus the normal to date of 3.02”, may have some rain on the way.
Two systems are to contribute. The first to bring scat showers and possible thunderstorms Wednesday afternoon and wider coverage showers and storms Wednesday night. Some scattered and sporadic showers, possibly a thunderstorm follow Thursday and in even more scattered fashion with dry hours between on Friday.
The system to watch beyond that sweeps northeastward into the Chicago area Saturday and Saturday night. The European Centre’s model is most ambitious in its precip production with this system.