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There's an old saying, what goes up must go down. That was certainly the case with our weather this past January. After one of the nicest December's I ever remember with an all-time December "IOWA" high temperature of 75 in Iowa City on the 15th, payback came in a big way in January. To refresh your memory, here's some December facts and figures from the NWS in the Quad Cities.

Notice December highs were as much as 7.9 degrees above normal in Burlington. Wow! It was also a relatively dry month with the majority of the area 1/2 to 1 inch below normal on precipitation.

Look how widespread the warmth was around the Midwest. As you would expect, snowfall was way below normal and had it not been for a late snow December 8th, it would have been non-existent for most of my area.

January the tide turned for temperatures but not precipitation. In Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, and Burlington readings were more than 6 degrees below the norms, just the opposite of December. It was another dry month with most of the region 1/2 to 1 inch below normal.

Below you can see the extent of the cold centered on the Midwest. Interestingly, despite the lack of precipitation snowfall was near norms thanks to the cold, which allowed precipitation to fall predominantly as snow.

NOAA has issued both its February and February-April outlooks. They call for near normal temperatures in February and near to slightly above average precipitation. I think the month ends up below normal in terms of temperatures and precipitation. I haven't thought much about February-April so no comment on that other than to say temperatures on the outlook don't look overly harsh.

As always, time will tell...


The next 10 days in my area feature northwest flow and a series of clippers. The general path of these is off to the north. Each is preceded by a surge of warm advection and seasonal temperatures only to be followed a cold front and a turn to colder readings. In the end it averages out to a cold period with 10 day departures that look like this on the GFS.

The EURO is significantly warmer showing temperature departures like this for the same 10 day period.

The northwest flow limits moisture and the 10 day precipitation departures look like this on the GFS. The EURO is similar. A lot of high pressure and dry weather is what I see.

However, with cold dominating what precipitation can develop generally falls as snow. Here's what snowfall looks like the next 10 days in the GFS. This might be high or low depending on the exact track of any clipper which really can't be determined at this distance due to their small size.

The EURO is clearly not as enthusiastic as the GFS for snow this far south. I could see that.

One of these little systems might scare up a few flurries or snow showers late Friday afternoon or evening, especially in the NE half of my area. Nothing more than a dusting if that. Otherwise, the weekend is dry and cold with highs warming from the upper teens to low 20s Friday, the mid to upper 20s Saturday, and finally the low to mid 30s Sunday. A pretty healthy shot of cold air arrives Wednesday with falling temperatures and much colder readings the end of next week and into the weekend.

The GFS shows the temperature trends over the next 10 days. You can see the downward dip in readings in the 6-12 day period as the NW flow intensifies, at least according to the GFS.

I guess if I had to sum it up the weather into the middle of next week looks pretty ho-hum. Nothing to write home about that's for sure. With that, I wish you all a fine weekend and I hope to see some of you Saturday at weather school. I can still take 2 people and if you are interested you can register by clicking the banner at the top of the page. Roll weather...TS


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