A new area of low pressure tracking from south-central Canada toward the Great Lakes will usher in a round of strong to severe thunderstorms aimed at much of the Upper Midwest and Central Plains tonight as a cold front tracks in from the north.

This morning, there are several clusters of heavy rain spanning from eastern Nebraska through Minnesota, most of which should weaken and dissipate by midday. The cloud cover associated with this convection will lead to a delay in the initiation of the stronger storms until the evening hours. The central Plains should, however, see some storms develop a couple hours earlier.

By the late-afternoon, widespread, hit or miss thunderstorms are expected to develop across the Front Range of Colorado and into the central Plains. Some of these storms mat pack large hail in excess of an inch and damaging winds of at least 58 mph as they track to the south and east. Overnight, these storms are expected to organize into a line of heavy rain over Kansas, bringing locally damaging winds. Some flash flooding will also be possible.

Closer to the center of the low pressure in the Upper Midwest, most of the activity will take place overnight Wednesday, with scattered lines and clusters of showers and thunderstorms sweeping through Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. A few spotty storms may also be possible into Michigan and northern Illinois, but severe weather is not anticipated there.

As the cold front tracks farther south, this will allow for a round of scattered showers and thunderstorms to cross through the western Ohio River Valley and much of the Great Lakes on Friday. A few of these storms may reach severe limits, but these will be more of your typical summertime storms given the atmospheric setup.

Meanwhile to the west, flash flooding will remain a concern for the Red River due to a with a cluster of storms. However, most of these should ultimately weaken and dissipate by midday Friday over parts of Kansas and Oklahoma.

Through Wednesday night, rainfall will vary, with most areas receiving up to 1 inch of rain. Localized areas may pick up in excess of 3 inches.


Jackson is Head of Content and Social Media at WeatherOptics. He is currently a student at the University of Miami, studying Meteorology and Broadcast Journalism. Dill produces forecast articles for the website and helps to manage the content schedule. He has also led the growth of WeatherOptics’ social media accounts, working to keep them aligned with the company’s evolving vision.

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