Beneficial Sunday Rains Could Be Followed by “Isaac” Rain Next Weekend?

ORIGINAL POST:  Monday, August 27, 2012, 8:43 a.m.

It’s incredible how good it feels on a Sunday just watching it rain after a summer with a severe to extreme drought that has cost farmers millions of dollars in lost corn crops and with lawns and gardens dried up and begging for rain.

While I know that some outdoors events were cancelled because of the rain, that is the risk people take with having events outside and they’ve been pretty fortunate this summer.

Widespread 1-4″ rainfall amounts were reported across eastern Iowa and northern Illinois Sunday.  This is how much rain collected in one of my gauges Sunday evening in Moline.

Officially, at the Quad City International Airport, in Moline, Illinois, 1.71″ of rain fell Sunday.  That was the heaviest 24-hour rainfall since 1.73″ fell on July 24, 2011.  Earlier this year, on May 3, 1.70″ accumulated in the rain gauge at the airport.  Meanwhile, at the airport in Davenport, Iowa, 2.46″ of rain fell Sunday.

And, the rain was steady enough that much of it soaked into the ground.  For the year, in Moline, we’re still running 8.42″ below average.  It isn’t as bad in Davenport.  They are only 3.16″ below average.

It feels great to be able to walk through the wet grass early Monday morning.  We’ve become so accustomed to crispy, crunchy, brown yards this summer.  The plants are just soaking it in and it’s strange to see water droplets collected on my prolific poinsettias.

Summer heat will be building again across the Midwest.  Under sunny skies through Friday, we’ll experience highs in the upper-80s to low-90s in the Quad Cities.

However, as I hinted this past weekend in my WQAD Storm Team 8 weather broadcasts, the latest computer models from the National Hurricane Center are projecting that “Tropical Storm Isaac”, which will become a hurricane late Monday night or early Tuesday morning is looking more likely to make landfall somewhere across Louisiana or Mississippi late Tuesday night.

As you can tell on this 5-day forecast, the remnants of Isaac could be tracking up through Arkansas and Missouri by next weekend.  That path would increase our chances of picking up some decent rain amounts Friday night into the weekend.  While this is not set in stone yet, it is more promising for us to receive rain than if Isaac had made a Florida landfall.

Here’s an incredible take on the amount of tropical moisture that a hurricane can generate.  This is the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center’s forecast of rain over the next five days.

Notice that a plume of 5″ rainfall amounts push up into Missouri, but look down along the Gulf Coast.  Rainfall amounts in excess of 18″ (that’s a foot-and-a-half) are possible.  That is why there is significant flooding with land falling tropical systems and hurricanes.

Again, the weekend rain chances are not certain for us yet in the Quad Cities, but it’ll definitely be worth watching.

For now, pray for our fellow Americans along the Gulf Coast and especially, Louisiana and Mississippi.

Have a great week!

Anthony

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