This week will be one of contrasts across the country. Nowhere will that contrast be more evident than up and down the Plains, where blistering heat will bake the southern Plains, while an early fall preview is on display in the Dakotas, as well as neighboring areas of the Midwest. Look at the projected 500 mb setup for tomorrow evening:
Now look at the latest projected 850 mb temperatures up and down the Plains:
Again, this is just tomorrow evening, when the really cool air is just starting to enter the playing field of the northern Plains and Upper Midwest. Basically, +30 degrees C at 850 mb from the Texas panhandle up to eastern Colorado and western Kansas, while in contrast, less than 10 degrees C in North Dakota. That's nearly a 25 degrees C difference aloft, or roughly a 45 degrees Fahrenheit temperature difference. And as you might expect, look at the projected early afternoon surface temperatures on the NAM model tomorrow afternoon:
The areas shaded in darker grey are projected to be over 110 tomorrow afternoon, with those shaded in the brown over 115. While those types of readings are not likely to be reached, I do believe much of Texas and into parts of Oklahoma will be over 100 tomorrow.
Meanwhile, with the next front slipping into the northern Plains, there very well could be some places that stay in the 60s, especially with clouds and any showers rolling through. Temperatures tomorrow night could easily drop into the 40s across parts of North Dakota and northern Minnesota any place where the sky is clear. And this only with the first little push of cool air coming into the region. It's conceivable there could be a chillier night in the wings later in the week.
As the snow exits the East Coast tonight, extreme cold follows one more time. It will begin to ease this weekend, with a mild spell likely during the middle of next week.
After the storminess of the next 36 hours, and the extreme cold that immediately follows, the cold will ease this weekend, with a promise of milder weather next week.
A few more days of storminess and extreme cold lie ahead before some relief in the pattern is on the way this weekend into next week.
A couple of storms will bring rain, ice and snow over a wide section of the country from the Plains to the East Coast this week, with another extremely cold air mass to follow late in the week.
Bitterly cold air covers much of the country today. A series of storms into the middle of next week will generate snow, ice and rain, followed by another blast of arctic air late next week.
With 23 days until the official start of spring, there is little sign of the season to come, with more bitter cold as well as snow, ice and rain in store for much of the nation from the Rockies to the East Coast.