Highs today ran 42-47, above the normals of 31-35 for the viewing area in mid-January.
Even at 10:35 p.m., temperatures are still 37-42 over the viewing in typically the coldest time of year.
Since 1879 only 24 other October 15-January 14 periods have had less snow than now.
The last time we had less than our 5.3" 2020-21 seasonal total was 2016-17 with 3.5" total as of January 14.
2006-07 had only received 0.1", one of the lowest of record for so late in the season.
2001-02 season only had 1.3" as of January 14.
It is interesting to note that all years from 1958-59 to 1981-82 had more than 5.3" of snow EVERY snow season by January 14 except TWO (1965-66 & 1970-71).
Meanwhile, since 1982-83, there are now a total of EIGHT October 15-January 14 periods of less than 5.3" of snow.
Skies will clear for a while tonight with some light fog developing & lows 32-37 as winds lighten a bit.
However, skies will cloud back up tomorrow morning & will be courtesy of low stratus migrating up from the south with highs ending up at 42-47.
Winds will be strong from the south-southwest to south at 15-30 mph.
We are fair game for a couple spotty showers late in the afternoon, followed by a round of showers in the evening.
Scattered snow showers will follow.
They will increase in coverage & intensity in an off & on fashion Friday afternoon.
With west-southwest winds at 15-30 mph, temperatures will hover around 31-34.
1" or less of accumulation is possible by Friday evening-night. Some isolated +1" amounts are possible in heavier showers or squalls.
These will be squally & like summer t'storms. One place may have 1.5", while another 4 miles away may have 0.4" as the snow showers will be scattered & localized "downpours" with visibility in some of them to 0.25 mile briefly. This could prove problematic for travel & for snow plows as localized areas of completely covered roadway could occur, but it may only be in pockets of a few miles initially.
An isolated rumble or two of thunder is possible with the snow showers/squalls.
This is due to the pocket of very, very cold air aloft to -33C at 500 mb. Steep lapse rate at near 800 mb is noted with sharp, sharp decrease in temperature with strong rising motion & even bits of elevated CAPE (up to 50-100 J/kg) Friday afternoon-evening.
In my analogs, the last time I saw a situation like this I was working at ABC 25 in Evansville (February 2006) & the 500 mb temps were similar & we had some intense snow squalls & even isolated thunder & lightning. Totals varied from a trace to 2" & some isolated places under thunder snow showers/squalls saw 4-5". We had a pocket of 5" of snow 40 minutes west-northwest of Evansville & 1" in one hour at our station, which melted, then another 0.5" fell in the evening from a 15-minute squall.
That day, Springfield, Illinois picked up 7" in a snow thunderstorm, but a few miles from there, only 0.5" fell.
We will monitor.
Scattering of snow showers & squall is likely with heating Saturday with highs near 32 after near 25 in the morning.
500 mb temperatures Saturday are around -24C with less strongly-rising air motion. However, there will still be snow showers with an accumulation of 1" or less.
The next cold, cold pocket should arrive Sunday with temperatures near 32 & 500 mb temperatures projected to be to -34C. Isolated thunder & lightning are possible with variable snowfall amounts like summer t'storms.
Isolated +1" amounts will occur with less than 1" elsewhere. Like Friday, we need to watch the heavier snow squalls as the may have visibility or 0.25 mile or less & may dump heavy snow that adds up quickly.
Again, I go back that situation in the Evansville area back in February 2006.
We will monitor.
We warm up next week to 40s to around 50 by mid to late week with windy weather. Some showers are possible, followed by snow showers.
Some snow & windy weather arrives by January 23-25.
Potentially the coldest weather of year is possible around January 26-27.
With a mantle of snow laid down, lows of -4 to 3 are possible.
Some cold may linger to January 31.
I still think January will end up as our snowiest month of the winter overall with normal totals of 6-12" over the area from southwest to northeast.
February 3-11 looks much warmer than normal with near/record warmth possible.
February 3-11 looks much wetter than normal with potential of even some t'storms. There is even the risk of some severe weather as far north as our area.
It still appears a cold shot will come in by around Valentine's Day with icing possible. We will monitor to see if this ends up being an ice storm, but it looks like a good set-up as cold bleeds in behind a front & warm air is lofted over the front.
Spring still looks warmer, wetter & stormier than normal. If looks the most active severe weather-wise since 2011 as dominant storm track is from the southern Plains to the western Great Lakes.
Focus is then on summer drought over the region with the first 100s since 2012.
Rainfall anomalies for Summer 2021:
The drought may continue in some form to October 2021.
Heat from the hot upper ridge looks to dominate.