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KCRG TV 9 First Alert Forecast

KCRG TV9 FIRST ALERT FORECAST FOR WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2019               

TODAY:  PARTLY TO MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF SHOWERS THIS AFTERNOON.

                HIGH 52.  SOUTH WIND 5-15 MPH.               

TONIGHT:  MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF SHOWERS EARLY.  LOW 34.  

TOMORROW:  MOSTLY CLOUDY AND COOLER.  HIGH 45.  

EXTENDED OUTLOOK FRIDAY THROUGH SUNDAY: 

DRY.  HIGH’S IN THE 50’S, LOW’S IN THE 20’S & 30’S. 

MISSISSIPPI RIVER STAGE AT DUBUQUE:  16.4-FEET AND FALLING


KCRG Weather Blog

Fall foliage report: Leaves are peaking

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says that the fall colors are at their best right now across a good share of the state. This is especially the case in northeastern Iowa, where oaks have joined the maple and aspen in their bright colors. Leaves will be past their peak very soon, but the DNR still expects there to be enjoyable color this weekend. The strong winds from earlier this week may have taken some leaves off the trees, but most are still in good shape. Elsewhere, peak is happening through this weekend, perhaps into early next week in southern Iowa. Some trees have started to lose leaves, but most tree species are overlapping their good colors. You can read the DNR’s report here.

Cold fronts tend to get stronger this time of year

October is a month of weather changes. Stronger cold fronts are a typical side effect of this time of year, especially in the second half of October. The chance of high temperatures staying below 50 in the first week of October is low and averages around 2%. However, by the end of the month, that value surges to 30%, or roughly one-in-every-three days. We’ve been watching the cold fronts line up to our northwest and can plan on plenty of cold to drop in. We’ll feel some of this later this week and again next week.

Tracking cooler weather

After a brief warm up this weekend, it looks like temperatures will take another tumble. The Climate Prediction Center had put almost the entire state of Iowa under a higher probability of having below average temperatures in the next 2 weeks. This timeline will take us through the rest of the October and even give a preview of what could be in store for Halloween. Only time will tell on that forecast. This prediction aligns with our forecast over the next week. We go from 60s this weekend to upper 40s and lower 50s by the end of our 9-day forecast. The cooler weather has only started, and whether you want to hear it or not, winter is just around the corner.

Beyond the Weather: Orionid meteor shower

Orion the Hunter is a winter constellation that we watch in the southern night sky. Over the next week, Orion becomes the focal point for an astronomical event: the annual Orionid meteor shower. The shower is expected to peak on Tuesday, October 22 in the early morning hours. This meteor shower happens when the Earth passes through debris from the Comet Halley. The debris strikes the earth’s atmosphere and causes the lights to streak across the sky. This year we are expecting about 10 to 15 meteors per hour under ideal conditions. To view the meteors, make sure you are in a dark location, well away from city lights. Give your eyes about 15 minutes to adjust and look for the constellation Orion. Happy stargazing!

NOAA releases its winter outlook for 2019-2020

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has issued its outlook for December through February. It highlights higher-than-even odds of temperatures being warmer than average over much of the country, with a lean toward above-normal precipitation across the northern United States. El Niño and La Niña can influence our overall weather trends in the winter, but neither is expected to develop. Instead, other big-picture patterns will drive what we get. One of them is called the Arctic Oscillation, which has to do with air pressure differences and can cause the jet stream to send cold air into the country. However, that’s not as predictable as far out as El Niño/La Niña – only a couple of weeks in advance. In our region, there is not a strong signal that indicates that the average winter temperature is likely to go one way or the other. It may, but there just is not anything that is causing forecasters to lean toward cold or warm. Meanwhile, there are higher-than-even chances of precipitation being above normal. That doesn’t necessarily mean more snow. (Scroll down to see that map.) You can read NOAA’s report here.