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WHAT GOES UP, MUST GO DOWN...

Thunderstorm anvils went up around the region Saturday and in many areas rain came down. What a concept! As is usually the case with summertime convection, some places picked up some active cells that produced heavy downpours and here and there some gusts up to 70 mph. A tornado watch was even issued until 7:00 for my western counties but the tornado threat never really materialized.

Later in the evening a severe thunderstorm watch was issued for counties further east that included much of my area until 2:00 AM.

The thunderstorm watch verified better with winds in some areas including Dubuque and the Quad Cities reached 60-70 mph with some minor damage indicated. 84 severe weather reports were logged by SPC with a large majority of those occurring in eastern Iowa and NW Illinois before midnight.

The biggest story of the day was much need rainfall which in some areas fell into the category of 1-2 inches. While beneficial rains were widespread not everyone enjoyed the generous amounts. Here's what Doppler radar indicated for totals through Midnight Saturday. (more may have fallen in some areas since then). Yellow depicts at least 1.25 inches. For many this was a godsend. Here in Dubuque the 1.54 inches of rain that fell was more than the previous 48 days which totaled (1.34"). Boom!

The cold front that generated the storms is advancing steadily east and most of the remaining showers and storms depart the area early Sunday. However, there is still more to the story as the strong closed 500mb circulation over Wisconsin pinwheels southeast. As it does so, vorticity and a new round of moisture will induce widely scattered showers and isolated non-severe storms to develop both Sunday and Monday, especially in the north with the afternoon and evening the most likely time. Rainfall amounts should generally be quite light, around 1/10th of an inch or less.


Temperatures Sunday-Tuesday will be noticeably cooler after highs Saturday of 90-94. (Iowa City was the warmest at 94 and the Quad Cities peaked at 93). Not only will it be cooler, humidity levels will be lower as postfrontal winds crank up from the west. In fact, some gusts could reach into the 35-40 mph range. The gusty winds will last into Monday. Here's the 10 meter wind gusts projected by the 3k NAM through Sunday.

Highs will go from the low to mid 70s north to the low 80s south on Sunday to the mid to upper 70s areawide on Monday. Here's the 24 hour change in temperatures from Saturday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. Some spots are down 25-30 degrees.

Tuesday and Wednesday appear to be quiet days as ridging sets up shop over the central Midwest. With the addition of sunshine highs will warm to the low 80s Tuesday and the low to mid 80s Wednesday. Later Wednesday night and the remainder of the week an upper level heat dome expands over the south-central U.S. That could bring 100 degree heat as far north as Missouri come Thursday-Saturday. It appears as if the heat will get sheared off near the Iowa border. That places my area on the northern flank of the heat dome where moisture begins to pool. This puts us close to the proximity of the mid-level jet and in a favorable position for at least scattered thunderstorms, particularly at night. Hopefully one or two mesoscale convective systems can develop and deliver some beneficial rain to the area. This will be highly contingent on where the northern edge of the thermal boundary sets up. That's the area to watch as it will determine who the rain beneficiaries are.


All right, I sign off on a happy note as I've been watering grass that I've seeded and gardens I've planted in two different properties for nearly a month. It was a pure joy to watch the rain gauge climb to 1.5 inches. Hopefully the rain was as beneficial in your area. Until next time roll weather...TS


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Call or text Carolyn with questions at 563-676-3320 or fire off an email to carolynswettstone@yahoo.com Hope to see you soon. T.Swails

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