A BRAND NEW RING...
High pressure is back in control and that means a couple more days of excellent summer weather. Highs will be seasonally warm (low to mid 80s) and humidity, while not entirely gone, will be tolerable with dew points in the 60s. Toss in some sunshine and you have nicely encapsulated July in the Midwest.
While temperatures won't change much in the next week, rain chances will go up as we once again slip on the "Ring of Fire", no stranger to the region in recent weeks. For those in need of a refresher, the ring of fire is the northeast edge of a heat dome that has roasted the Plains for over a month. It's here that the heat rubs up against cooler air setting the stage for cap breaking thunderstorm complexes, especially at night.
The heat dome itself pulses, expanding and contracting which alters the position of the ring of fire. In other words, it comes and goes as the heat flirts with eastern Iowa and western Illinois. From the looks of things, starting Friday my area should be in close proximity to the firing zone. So much so that precipitation is likely to be above normal over the next week.
ON THE TOPIC OF HEAT...
When I talk about heat, I'm talking about the searing conditions out to our west. Just look at the next 14 days in Dodge City, Kansas. The average high July 13th through July 25th ( a period of 13 days) is nearly 108 degrees
Looking all the way out to July 23rd you can see how temperature departures in Illinois are several degrees below normal while over western Iowa into the Plains, readings are 20-25 degrees above normal.
That results in a 25 to 35 degree spread in temperatures which is depicted by the GFS below. It's on the eastern fringe of that heat where my area is located, that the ring of fire is likely to reside.
It certainly shows up in the precipitation departures the next couple of weeks. Here's the actual amounts forecast on the GFS.
These are the 2 week anomalies that would result.
Now you can see that my area is right on the edge of the heavier rain. Maybe that's the case, maybe it isn't. That's all dependent on the the eastern extent of the heat which is bound to fluctuate over a two week period. It wouldn't take much for the firing ground to be further west, especially with the mesoscale impacts created by MCS complexes and outflow boundaries which act as mini-cold fronts. On the other hand, a small shift to the east leaves us with the left overs which may not be much more than small picking's. We seem to be in that zone that could go either way. It will be interesting to watch it all unfold.
As for temperatures around my area during the 15 day period ending July 27th, here's what the GFS is suggesting. We do eventually warm in the week 2 period but that extreme heat looks to lurk and remain just to the west. Let's hope so.
The EURO over the same period is in good overall agreement with the GFS
By the way, we've been fortunate to avoid hot temperatures so far this July. Readings in my local area through July 10th have been near or even a bit below average.
One of the reasons for that has been clouds and precipitation which has been above normal in many spots since the beginning of July. Here you can see the 14 day departures going back to the end of June.
Well, there's not much to say about today's conditions other than they are top shelf and worth enjoying. We've got another good one on the way. Roll weather...TS