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We are pleased to announce that we are offering a new edition of Weather School called Severe Weather 101 for Saturday April 4th. We have devoted the entire afternoon to the formation of severe storms with a strong emphasis on tornadoes. We'll do some simulations and take you inside several classic historic tornado outbreaks that have impacted Iowa and Illinois. I think you'll be really pleased with the sessions. We hope you can join us for all things severe weather! For all the details click on the banner below or contact


Some of you up north will start the day with a little dusting of snow. Nothing serious, nothing unusual for March, and nothing to worry about. With temperatures rising into the 40s and 50s area wide that will be gone in no time and we can resume our spring fling. To get you warmed up take a look at these meteograms for Cedar Rapids the next 10-16 days.

The EURO-10 days

The GFS-16 days

You will notice that through mid-March (March 19th on the GFS) there are no highs below freezing and most days the range is from the upper 40 to someplace in the mid to upper 60s. Those are springlike readings way before the the equinox itself which begins on March 19th.

Feast your eyes in these 15 day temperature departures broken into 5 day increments off the GFS

Days 0-5

Days 5-10

Days 10-15

Clearly, the big story going forward is the warmth that's showing up. Not just the warmth, but the duration of it. Even at day 15 I'm not seeing anything that shows this breaking down in any significant way. I said last week it would not surprise me to see our first 70 before mid March and that is still on the table tonight.

These are the departures shown March 16th. Many readings 20-25 above normal, Just a sampling of what models are advertising.

Timing in the weather world is everything and this weekend is going to be a beauty. The NWS in Des Moines put this out showing projected highs Saturday and Sunday. I like the title...YES PLEASE!

Another pleasant factor about our weather recently has been the lack of storms, especially winter storms. This is the precipitation departure over the past 30 days. All the storms have taking the southern route well to our south and into the Ohio Valley.

The next opportunity for precipitation in my area comes Sunday night or Monday. The south winds that will bring the warm weekend will also start to draw some moisture northward. Look what happens with the amount of available water vapor. It goes from 1/10" Friday to over an inch Monday morning.



With the moisture in place and forcing arriving in the form of a cold front, showers are a good bet Sunday night and early Monday. There may even be enough CAPE for a few thundershowers. You can see it all coming together late Sunday night in the surface depiction below.

The GFS shows this for total precipitation.

In Cedar Rapids the GFS has over a half inch which is twice what we had during the entire month of February (0.26"). It will be interesting to see if the rain pans out. Often times when you get into a dry pattern like we are in now what looks good on paper turns out disappointing in the end. We'll see.

The only other issue to mention this week is the potential for strong winds Thursday. Some gusts could get into that 35-45 mph range.

Gusty winds are another sure sign that spring is getting a foothold. With that I'll wrap this up. Have a fine day and roll weather...TS

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