At last, at long last, the late summer heat wave is about to be a thing of the past. We’re not there yet, but we’re at least getting a little preview of what’s to come. Isolated areas of northeast Iowa got a few thunderstorms Friday night as a cold front pushed through the state. Although weak, it will provide a little bit of a break from what turned out to be the hottest day of the year on Friday.
Even so, 90’s will be reached easily by much of the state today. The same precautions you’ve heard about all week still apply if you are venturing out to a football game or any other weekend plans today.
The real relief will come in the form of a stronger cold front set to begin pushing into northwest Iowa later this weekend. Along with it is the threat of strong to severe thunderstorms, especially into the evening hours tonight as the front inches closer. This is something that we’ll be closely monitoring tonight as the sun goes down. The primary threats from any strong storms would be strong damaging winds and large hail. There is an isolated tornado threat, but it is very low.
Of more important note is the partial relief it will bring. I say partial because it will rescue us from our heat wave, bringing 70 and 80 degree temperatures to Iowa. But it will not save us from our moderate to severe drought conditions. Several inches is needed to even put a dent in the moisture deficit the state is experiencing once again this year and these storms simply will not pack enough of a punch.
As a result of the drought, and water levels as low as last year, state leaders are warning everyone who ventured out this Labor Day Holiday to be careful. Not only will the dry conditions increase the fire risk, but it has drastically cut area river and lake levels. Boaters, kayakers, etc should all be advised that some areas may not be passable because the water is simply too low so stay aware.
For now, we will focus on tonight’s threat for severe weather. Look for updates on the threat on our Facebook page later tonight.