Chicago Weather

As Blizzards Pummel Great Plains, Steady, Soaking Rain In Store For Chicago, Suburbs

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A soggy, foggy and windy day is in store for Chicago and the suburbs Wednesday, as waves of soaking showers and blustery southeast winds expected throughout the day threaten to snarl both the morning and evening commutes.

According to NBC 5 Storm Team, a massive weather system that has brought blizzard-like conditions to the Great Plains and the Rockies, and dangerous tornadoes in Oklahoma, Texas and Louisiana will result in all-day rain in the Chicago area.

"Don't forget your rain jacket and umbrella tomorrow," the National Weather Service in Chicago on Tuesday tweeted. "The next 24 to 30 hours look wet and blustery with waves of showers and gusty southeast winds."

Forecast models show cloudy skies and scattered, steady rain is expected all day Wednesday, with periods of lighter rain in the morning and afternoon, and heavier showers and blustery winds potentially impacting Wednesday evening's commute. High temperatures are expected to remain in the mid 40s.

Overnight, some areas -- particularly north and northwest of the city -- could see rain briefly mixing with or changing to snow. And while accumulation is not expected, a cool down is on the way, and temperatures are predicted to drop.

Thursday morning, skies are expected to briefly dry out before more rain and snow showers move in towards the late afternoon and evening, NBC 5 Storm Team reports. According to forecast models, Thursday temperature highs in the mid 30s are expected.

Friday, temperatures are predicted to drop a bit more, to a high of 33 degrees, with the potential for scattered flurries.

Saturday, Sunday and Monday, however, temperatures are only expected to reach into the 20s, with brief patches of sun between lingering flakes and flurries. However, the precipitation is not expected to result in any snow accumulation.

Has Chicago Seen Its First Measurable Snow Fall of the Season?

This year, Chicago saw it's first measurable snow Nov.15, 3 days before the city typically sees its average first snow of the season.

O'Hare International Airport has seen two ends of extremes in recent years, with 2019's first measurable snowfall coming on Oct. 30, the seventh-earliest measurable snowfall in Chicago since 1967.

Just last year, Chicago saw its latest first measurable snowfall of all-time, according to the National Weather Service. Snow did not fall at O'Hare Airport until Dec. 28, when 1.5 inches of snowfall were recorded.

The earliest snowfall record was set on Oct. 12, 2006, when 0.3 inches of snow fell at O'Hare.

Here's a look at when the city saw its first snowfall over the past 10 years, and how much snow fell:

  • 2012: Dec. 20, 0.2 inches
  • 2013: Nov. 11, 0.4 inches
  • 2014: Oct. 31, 0.1 inches
  • 2015: Nov. 20, 4.2 inches
  • 2016: Dec. 4, 6.4 inches
  • 2017: Nov. 10, 0.1 inches
  • 2018: Nov. 9, 1 inch
  • 2019: Oct. 30, 1.2 inches
  • 2020: Nov. 24, 0.7 inches
  • 2021: Dec. 28, 1.5 inches
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