Chicago Weather

Chicago's Deep Freeze Continues, Could Be Longest February Cold Snap in 60 Years

How long is Chicago's deep freeze going to last? Simply put, the dangerously cold temperatures will be sticking around for awhile.

A Wind Chill Advisory remains in place for DeKalb, LaSalle, McHenry, Kane and Kendall counties until 10 a.m. on Tuesday, warning of "dangerously cold wind chills... of 20 to 25 below zero, locally as cold as 30 below zero."

Those kinds of wind chills could cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes, the National Weather Service warned, asking residents to use caution and wear appropriate clothing like a hat and gloves.

The first taste of the bitter temps began Friday after a snowstorm the night before, continuing through the weekend with a wind chill advisory in effect and some communities reporting wind chills of more than 30 degrees below zero.

Monday began overcast with light snow in parts, remaining cold with afternoon highs between 10 to 16 degrees before plummeting to below zero inland with single digits above zero in northwest Indiana. But 5 to 10 mph winds created wind readings between -5 and -15 degrees.

Tuesday looks to be mostly to partly sunny, breezy and bitter cold, especially in the morning with wind chill levels between -5 to -15 degrees.

Any light snow in far southern counties will end with little to no additional accumulation. However, there will be more clouds and lake effect snow showers in portions of northwest Indiana and east in the Michiana snow belts today. Highs from 8 degrees in northwest counties increase to 18 degrees in northwest Indiana, but wind chills will remain below zero in many locations this afternoon.

This stretch of cold weather is likely to continue for nearly two more weeks, with temperature highs not expected to be above 20 until Feb. 17, NBC Storm Team 5 forecasts show.

Wednesday likely won't be quite as cold as the days before but will still only see highs between 15 and 20 degrees with wind chills in the single digits as the area sees another chance for light snow in the afternoon and evening.

Thursday has another chance of light lake effect snow showers in store as the cold continues, with highs between 15 to 20 degrees and wind chills in the single digits once again.

Another chance of light snow comes late Friday, which starts partly sunny and cold: highs in the low to mid teens, wind chills at or below zero.

Partly sunny to mostly cloudy skies on Saturday, with highs between 10 to 15 degrees but feeling much colder again due to wind. Another chance for light snow comes in the late afternoon and evening, with similar conditions on Sunday for Valentine's Day, which will be bitter cold with highs between 10 and 14 degrees but feeling colder.

Monday's high looks to be about 14 degrees, climbing a bit to 19 degrees on Tuesday and poised to potential reach above 20 degrees for the first time in almost two weeks on Wednesday.

This deep freeze, sticking around for at least nine days straight, will be the longest stretch of weather this cold in February since 2007, data shows.

But with temperatures forecasted to stay low for 12 consecutive days, from Friday to next Wednesday, that could tie for the longest cold stretch in February since 1958.

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