ASK TOM: Is there a long-range forecast for the summer here in Chicago?

Dear Tom, 

Is there a long-range forecast for the summer here in Chicago?

Helen Baker


Dear Helen,

NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center prepares 90-day temperature and precipitation outlooks for the nation. The Center’s current outlook for July and August into September calls for above-normal temperatures for practically all of the country, including the Chicago area.


The outlook also indicates equal chance for above- or below-normal rainfall. Because expected weather patterns show no particular rainfall preferences, a reasonable interpretation is that rainfall will be near normal.


The outlook for Chicago — hotter summer temperatures than normal and near-normal rainfall — therefore indicates a major departure from the current pattern of cool temperatures and very wet conditions.