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A cold front is winging its way south of the region Thursday morning. It's delivered a handful of showers and storms to the Midwest but left much of my local area high and dry due to its late night passage when instability was limited. Any lingering showers (if there's any left) will depart the south early Thursday morning. That opens the door for drier and somewhat cooler air the remainder of the day. Dew points which begin well into the 60s, will slowly but steadily fall into the 50s in all but the far south by evening. Highs will range from 80 north to about 85 in the south.


By weeks end we'll be looking at another beautiful day as near perfect weather settles in for Friday. Mostly sunny skies, dew points in the low to mid 50s and highs of 78-83 will highlight the package. See how dew points go from 65-70 Wednesday night to 50-55 Friday afternoon. That's a downturn that will make outdoor activities very comfortable.

Wednesday night dew points.

Friday dew points.

Additionally, the RAP smoke plume product shows only a hint of forest fire smoke Thursday and Friday so that should keep air quality at respectable levels. One less issue to deal with.

The high pressure that delivers the pleasant air mass will dominate the upper Midwest through the weekend. There is just enough cool air aloft to perhaps generate a few widely scattered instability driven showers Saturday and Sunday. These look isolated and brief with little in the way of rainfall. At best coverage would be near 20% so most of the region will remain dry through the weekend. Here's what the GFS and EURO suggest for rainfall Thursday-Sunday.



The next potential threat for showers and storms comes Monday night. It's tied to the warm advection associated with a hot air mass that makes a run at the Midwest next week. It's leading edge (warm front), provides the lifting mechanism to generate a NW to SE oriented band of storms at that time. These clusters can provide some generous rains but it's too early to define where. Currently central Iowa is most favored with some bleed over possible into parts of SE Iowa and WC Illinois.

Towards the middle of next week guidance continues to point towards a hot period with temperatures near or into the 90s. The operational GFS is insanely hot showing highs of 100-105 in the Quad Cities July 29-August 1st.

The EURO operational is less enthused about the heat and keeps readings in the 88-93 range with its version of heat peaking a couple days earlier than the GFS.

For what it's worth, CPC shows a moderate risk of extreme heat in the period July 27th-August 2nd.

My feeling is that the GFS is having serious problems with its mixing ratios and gets far too much heat to the surface. I remain in the camp of the EURO which brings us some toasty days but nothing that is out of the norm for late July. Just to give you an idea of how off the rails the GFS is, take a look at the highs it depicts July 31st. Readings up to 115 in SE Iowa. It even shows 109 as far north as Dubuque! That is never going to happen and it essentially renders the model useless. Garbage as far as I'm concerned.

The way I see it we are in for a toasty stretch of weather late next week but I am still leaning towards the less intense solution offered up by the EURO. I also think the hottest weather will be confined to a few days, in other words what heat we endure should not be prolonged in duration. Of course I can't say this with certainty but my confidence is moderate a full week in advance of the event.

By the way, the CPC week 3 temperature outlook indicates near normal readings the first 10 days of August and that at least makes sense to me.

As far as rainfall goes, I don't see anything to really hang my hat on for significant rain the next 10 days and models certainly reflect the period being dry. Here's the 10 day rainfall departures on the GFS and EURO.



Well that's all for now. Enjoy the fine weather headed our way the next few days and as always, roll weather...TS



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