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Strong storms possible Tuesday

It was a cool start for western Wisconsin, with lows near or below 50 degrees for all of us. This cool start made it difficult to warm up. Eau Claire has only had high temperatures at 80 or above two times in the past 12 days, and this mild stretch of weather will continue with the exception of tomorrow.

While highs today did get close to 80 in a few spots, most of the area was held below once again. Our air was dry again today with very low humidity as measured by our low dew points in the low to mid 50s this afternoon. Those will be rising up into the upper 50s tonight, possibly near 60 at times.

Dew points will continue to rise to tropical levels tomorrow, which is more of what we expect in the middle of August, but it’ll only last one day.

We will see chances for scattered thunderstorms attempt to form ahead of a cold front during the day, but chances are heavily dependent on how much moisture a storm complex that will miss us south tonight uses up. That complex will develop in South Dakota tonight and move southeast through southern Minnesota and northern Iowa by morning.

The path and timing of that system will determine if there is enough energy in the atmosphere remaining for more development over northeast Minnesota. If storms do develop, they’ll move southeast into western Wisconsin. It’s likely the rain, if it happens, will only take a couple hours to move through, but timing for this complex could be anywhere between late morning through the evening.

Again, our storm chances will be affected by the exact path, timing, and strength of the morning complex to our southwest. Small changes in that system could be the difference between all or nothing for us. If storms form, an isolated few of them could become strong to severe.

After tomorrow, however, the weather pattern will become mild once again, with highs mid to late week only in the mid 70s and lows could again drop into the 40s despite plenty of sunshine. Our next chances for rain and storms are small this weekend, with a little better chance early next week. Until then, we’ll continue to be mild.

Matt Schaefer

Matt Schaefer was promoted to Chief Meteorologist in July of 2019 and has been our evening meteorologist for News 18 since June of 2016. Prior to that, he was our Saturday meteorologist starting in September 2014.

Matt was born and raised in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. He enjoys all the extremes that mother nature throws at the Badger State: from severe thunderstorms to blizzards to subzero temperatures.

Matt studied meteorology in the Midwest as well, earning his Bachelor’s of Science in Meteorology at Valparaiso University in Indiana. There, Matt was heavily involved in VUTV Weather, the Valpo student chapter of AMS/NWA, and VUSIT (Valparaiso University Storm Intercept Team). He’s logged more than 20,000 miles chasing and studying severe storms all across the country and witnessed nine tornadoes including six in one day!

Matt describes himself as a Wisconsin boy at heart and enjoys cheering for the Packers, Brewers, Badgers, and Admirals just to name a few. He loves simply being outdoors and enjoys the Wisconsin wilderness especially in fall, and whitetail deer season!

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