ROCKFORD (WREX) — As wildfires continue to rage in the Western U.S., haze is going to persist locally. Temperatures start climbing through midweek before a big cool down late in the work week.
Hazy and slightly warmer:
High pressure remains in control of the forecast locally, which means sunshine and quiet conditions. Similar to Monday, more smoke in the upper atmosphere is going to result in hazy conditions. While it won't be enough to completely blot out the sunshine, it is going to be enough to make for stunning sunsets.
Air quality both Tuesday and Wednesday are forecast to hit "moderate" levels. This means sensitive groups with respiratory illnesses might notice some impacts. If possible, stay indoors during the afternoon when air quality is worst.
Temperatures early Tuesday fell into the 50s, but highs are forecast to climb to near 80°. Average highs for mid-September in Rockford sit at around 75°, so slightly warmer-than-average. Tuesday features a warm-up thanks to blustery southwesterly winds, with gusts approaching 20 miles per hour during the afternoon.
Warmest day of the week ahead of potent cold front:
Wednesday features another day of high temperatures at and slightly above 80°. The cold front bringing in fall-like temperatures for the back half of the work week comes through during the afternoon.
Cold fronts this time of the year, especially when oriented west-to-east, tend to come through dry. This cold front looks to continue that fact, with not much more than an increase in cloud cover expected. Models depict an isolated shower possible south of I-80 between 3 and 6 p.m., but most areas remain dry.
Big cool down:
Following the cold frontal passage midweek, temperatures take a plunge. From Thursday through Saturday, highs fall into the middle and upper 60s. Fall-like temperatures stick around through the the middle of next week, but long-range outlooks indicate slightly warmer temperatures.