Here’s a look at when our region sees its first freeze (32º or lower) compared to other parts of the country.  

This week is when we see the first freeze on Average at O’Hare – official date Oct. 19

For the outlying counties, (north, west or south/southeast) the average freeze is somewhere between Oct. 11-20. Notice in the map below, the city’s heat island and lakeside locations which helps keep that first average freeze at bay until October 27-November 5.

So far this year, the lowest we’ve dropped to at O’Hare is 42º on both Oct. 10 and Oct. 11.  There’s nothing in the 7-day forecast that signals a drop to freezing at O’Hare either.

The record for Chicago’s earliest autumn freeze is Sept. 22, 1995 (32º) and the record latest fall freeze is Nov. 24, 1931 (30º). Last year our first freeze occurred on Nov. 11, 2022  (32º)

Those leaf bags will get a lot heavier after the leaves soak up the moisture. 

This may encourage people to rake their leaves when they are dry, even if that means more times with a rake in hand.  Letting them sit on the ground could lead to more work. There will be a lot of clean up to do in the weeks ahead, why make it harder?