A beautiful way to finish up the last weekend of August. Mostly sunny skies Sunday and Monday thanks to high pressure to our north bringing in the easterly winds. We might end up with a bit of Canadian wildfire smoke in our skies late Monday and into Tuesday with a weather system coming in from the northwest. Tuesday also has a slight chance of showers, but only about 20% of the area will likely see any raindrops. We look to return to sunshine and some summery temps by the end of the week. If you like some warmth, it’s not a bad way to start out September and the Labor Day holiday weekend! Enjoy! 

WGN Weekly Climate report: In a month that’s been pretty average temperature-wise, the past week had our hottest temperatures of 2023 in and around Chicago.

August 24th had the first 100 degree reading at both Midway and O’Hare. It was the first triple digit temperature at O’Hare since July of 2012. The 100 degree reading at ORD tied the 1947 record for an August 24th high temp. It was the latest we’ve seen We also broke a record for the warmth of the overnight low. The heat index on Thursday of 120 degree was the warmest heat index we’ve seen in the Windy City.  Much more pleasant this weekend and the average high temperature this coming week drops from 81 to 80 degrees. 

August so far is more than two inches below average rainfall. Despite the lack of rainfall this month, we have seen some continued improvement in the weekly updated drought monitor.

Southeastern Chicagoland and NW Indiana are not under any type of drought condition now. Most of us around the region are considered “abnormally dry”– like many areas in the eastern Great Lakes that had a really soggy July. Parts of the Great Plains are still experiencing areas of severe drought. 

Our count of days 90 degrees or warmer stands in the upper teens at both O’Hare and Midway. We’re not done with summery temps yet. We could increase the number of days of 90 or warmer by one or two before this coming week is over. 

KEY MESSAGE From the National Weather Center:

  • 1) Idalia is forecast to become a hurricane by the time it reaches
    the southeastern Gulf of Mexico, and it could be near or at major
    hurricane strength when it reaches the Gulf coast of Florida. The
    risk continues to increase for a life-threatening storm surge and
    hurricane-force winds along portions of the west coast of Florida
    and the Florida Panhandle beginning as early as Tuesday. Storm
    surge and hurricane watches are in effect for portions of the
    west coast of Florida and the coast of the Florida Panhandle, and
    residents in these areas should monitor updates to the forecast and
    follow any advice given by local officials.
  • 2) Scattered flash and urban flooding is expected across portions of
    the west coast of Florida, the Florida Panhandle, and southern
    Georgia late Tuesday night through Wednesday. Heavy rainfall may
    lead to flash flooding across portions of the Carolinas Wednesday
    into Thursday.
  • 3) Hurricane-force winds are expected across portions of far
    western Cuba late Monday. Heavy rainfall is expected across
    portions of the eastern Yucatan and western Cuba and may produce
    areas of flash and urban flooding as well as landslides across
    western Cuba.

In Greece’s northeastern regions a massive wildfire believed to have caused 20 of the 21 wildfire-related deaths in the past week, was burning for a ninth day.

The blaze, where smaller fires combined to form one of the largest single wildfires ever to have struck a European Union country, has decimated vast tracts of forest and burned homes in outlying areas of the city of Alexandroupolis. CONTINUE READING