Record Chill Looms Late Week From Montana To Ohio Valley, Record Heat Takes Aim At Seattle-Portland Corridor

Photo courtesy of Mark Vogan

It may have been a long and hot summer for the bulk of the nation but at least there is light at the end of the tunnel, starting late this week when a significant shot of cool comes down from Canada.

Summer is by no means over but the back will be broken with worst in rear view mirror

This is not just a cool shot but may bring record cold daytime highs and nighttime lows to parts of the Northern Plains, Midwest into the Ohio Valley. This will certainly be a big deal given what kinda summer it’s been. It also drops this summer ranking of hot considerably given how early this is coming. Had we seen this hit during the last week of August and it stayed hot till then, well this summer would have been far worse than it’s going to end up being.

Parts of northern North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan may struggle to hit 60 and nights may get near to frost level in spots.

While the past 5-7 days have been far cooler than recent weeks across the very region which has been brutal this summer, this 2nd shot of cool, which will be stronger the current arrives by Thursday into eastern Montana and the Dakotas, forcing daytime highs to struggle, perhaps holding them below 70° over many parts. By Friday through Sunday the chill broadens it’s coverage deeper into the Midwest, Great Lakes and eventually the Ohio Valley. There may be some which have a tough time getting out of the 50s, especially over northern sections of Montana, North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. While some record cold highs are likely between Thursday and Sunday, nighttime lows will widely fall into the low 50s with a chance that suburban Fargo, Minneapolis, Madison, Chicago all the way down to Cincinnati may dip into the 40s thanks to the low heights, clear skies, light winds and dry air. I expect some of the above areas mentioned dip into the 30s.

While this may not seem all that cold, keep in mind that it’s still summer and barely half way through August. This will be a significant flip but it certainly DOESN’T herald the end to summer. It’s way too early to say that and I do think there is more heat to come but what I will say is this.. summer’s worst is well and truely over and following this type of cool shot, it will be tough to get any real heat back. Yes the back of summer is broken. While such cities as Chicago will likely see another 90°, it may be tough and so 80s are more likely to become the as highest values from now on. Minneapolis may in fact have seen their last 90° along with Bismarck, and Fargo in North Dakota.

90s to return to Seattle-Portland corridor, may get as far north as northern Alberta-Saskatchewan as cool shot dives into US

If you notice with the ECMWF charts I have uploaded, while the first real autumnal chill takes a nose dive into the Northern tier of the US, the blowtorch over the Great Basin gets forced north. This surge will push 90s back into Seattle and it likely won’t end at the Puget sound but will continue north. Record heat may reach all the way to the southern Northwest Territories by Friday and last through the weekend.

While the very areas which have seen warmest from normal May through July, turn cool, the very areas which were cool will end the summer warm

The heat also looks to hand around through the rest of August across the Southwest and towards the Southern California coast. I am confident that the region from San Francisco to San Diego east to Tucson north to Salt Lake City wll see this month as warmest of summer following a very cool period from May 1 to July 31.

All areas, particularly in the north are seeing their averages now fall and that drop will sharpen nearer to September and so temperatures continuing to run 5-10 above normal from LA to Phoenix means this will be quite the flip to what has been an overall cool summer, particularly the nearer to the Pacific Ocean you get and it could end up being the opposite over the large area from the Plains to DC which has been brutally hot from May 1 through July 31.

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