Under thick wildfire smoke, highs today reached 82-88 once again. Heat indices peaked at 84-91.
Thick wildfire smoke will dominate frequently the rest of the week, through the weekend & into next week.
Extreme heat wave with upper ridge will migrate to the Plains setting the stage for some of the hottest air temperatures since the 1930s & 1950s in South Dakota to Nebraska with up to 115 in some places.
Meanwhile, 90s move into our area with 100s as close as western Illinois. I'd go hotter here for actual high temperatures if not for the smoke. 94-99 seems reasonable as peak temperatures. I'd probably go 99-103 if not for so much thick smoke.
This, combined with very high dew points from saturated soils in the South & transpiring corn means dew points of 79-81 Sunday-Thursday.
We could have 5 days with parts of the viewing area seeing heat indices +110.
Heat Advisory to Excessive Heat Watch to Warning is possible.
Complex of storms on the periphery of the heat will move southeastward from Wisconsin & Michigan to our area Friday.
Some severe weather is possible if we can overcome the cap & the smoke thins more.
Complex of severe storms may clip area Saturday. Looks like much of it will be Michigan to Ohio, but it could back build enough into our area.
A complex or two of these storms on the periphery of the ridge in the "Ring of Fire" may clip the area next week.
Again, any one of them could go severe with even derecho risk if they can really get their act together with capping & smoke around. There will be plenty of heat & high humidity for impressive, robust CAPE.
Damaging straight-line winds & downbursts are the threats with any of these complexes or "Ridge Riders" that can really organize & track into the area.
Strong surface cold front & upper trough will finally swing in & push the hot, hot ridge south & west.
Exact timing is still a bit unclear. However, it appears that it may be around August 2, still.
Severe weather is possible from this line of storms.
Shot of much cooler weather should follow with highs 74-79 & lows 49-55 for a time in early August (August 3-7).
This nice weather will occur as hot, hot ridging sets up in the Northwest U.S. to Alaska & unusually warming ridging occurs over Greenland.
We will likely see it heat up again to 80s & 90s in mid-August. The overall trend for August is a bit drier than normal.
Looking at the MJO, solid Phase 5 promotes ridging here & in the Plains this time of year. That, combined with the drought in the West & Plains means enhanced hot ridging! As it goes into solid 6, we will cool as we move into early August. Although Phase 8 & 1 are great for tropical activity in the Atlantic, it will not be solid & influential (as you can see in the chart below).