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The weather has calmed down and warmer air is moving in across the Midwest. Temperatures are Sunday were about 20 degrees warmer than Saturday. Any snow on the ground in my local area has largely melted away as a result:

The start of the week will be incredibly mild due to a strong ridge - an area of high pressure - in the upper levels of the atmosphere:

We'll have plenty of sunshine Monday and temperatures will be back near 50 degrees:

Tuesday gets even warmer:

Wednesday is going to be the peak of the warmth, but it's not necessarily going to be a *pleasant* day. First let's talk what it's going to take to get record breaking warmth in December.

First in the upper levels we have that ridge. When we look at the temperatures aloft they're running 15 to 20 degrees above normal (these are in Celsius):

Then you have the wind... which is going to be terribly strong. The wind "mixes" that warm air down to the surface and leads to warmer temperatures. We will likely have wind gusts in the 35 to 45 mph range (if not higher):

That combination will take us into the 60s and 70s!

The record high temperature for December 15th in Cedar Rapids is 55°, in the Quad Cities it's 57°, for Iowa City it's 59° and Dubuque's record is 53°.

We blow those out of the water. Then you take it to the all-time records for December:

Cedar Rapids: 69° (1998)

Quad Cities: 71° (1998)

Dubuque: 67° (1998, 1889)

Iowa City: 71° (1998)

We could potentially experience the warmest December day on RECORD on Wednesday.

Now it's time to wait and see....


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