Complex Monday Storm…Cycle Repeats

***Watch WISN 12 News for the latest on the weekend and Monday forecast!***

Thank you for stopping by the Weather Watch 12 blog.  In today’s entry we will discuss the weekend weather and a potential wet storm for Southeast Wisconsin on Monday.  I will also show how this storm is related to storms that occurred in late October and around Christmas.  This is a lengthy blog, but one that you will find fascinating!

Let’s get started by looking at a weak disturbance that will start our weekend with flurries and some snow showers.  As of Friday afternoon light to at times moderate snow was falling over Iowa.  A look at the surface map shows the areas that were reporting snow.  The little ‘**’ symbols represent light snow…three of those in a triangular shape indicate moderate snow.  While snow was falling in parts of Iowa…Milwaukee was enjoying sunshine and a temp of 36 degrees!

As I mentioned in previous blogs I don’t anticipate much snow on Saturday…likely trace amounts to at most a half inch.  With temperatures in the 32-36 degree range it will be tough for too much snow to stick on Saturday.

Most of the forecast attention this weekend will be dedicated to the storm that will impacte the Midwest and Great Lakes on Sunday Night and especially Monday.  If you follow the blog I am a firm believer in a weather pattern theory called the LRC.  This states that the weather pattern repeats or cycles.  Each Fall a new pattern sets up and then begins to cycle.  Once a cycle length is determined, accurate long range forecasts can be made.  This season’s cycle length is 60-62 days.  Why do I mention this?  Because by looking back to the previous versions of this storm, we can get an idea of how it ‘should’ behave come Sunday Night and Monday.

Let’s start by looking at the latest suface FORECAST map from the 12Z GFS for Monday at 6pm.  This model like all the others have continued the trend of pushing this storm farther north.  Here the surface low is over western Illinois by late Monday.  This would put Southeast Wisconsin in an area of accumulating snow…possibly heavy snow.


Other models have the storm even farther north with a chance of snow, a mix, and then eventually rain!  This is a complex storm…but one that I believe we have seen before.

Looking back at the previous two times in the cycle…roughly 60-62 days ago we can see that this storm has had a preference to track in the exact same place.

Below are the surface maps from December 25 and October 23.  The first map below is from the morning of December 25.  This has the surface low over southeast Iowa.   

Going back to October 23…or 60-62 days back.  The surface low was near the Iowa/Illinois border. 

Both times through the cycle this has been a wet storm for Milwaukee.  I expect it to be wet again…with a snow, and possibly a mix of rain, sleet, and snow if t he track pushes farther north.  The track will continue to shift around some before arriving Sunday Night and into Monday, but this storm is the one I highlighted back in late January to occur during the last week of February.  We’ll re-examine the long range forecast that I made in coming days, but for now, if you have traveling plans on Monday across southern Wisconsin, keep up-to-date with the latest forecast.

The forecast will change between now and then, and we will keep you updated on the blog and on WISN 12 News with the very latest data! 

If you have thoughts or questions please leave them in the comments section of this blog!

Jeremy Nelson


2 Responses

  1. OK Jeremy, I have become a believer in the LRC after having seen how the cycle has been repeating most of the winter…fascinating. As it stands now, do you anticipate this storm to be like the wet one Milwaukee had and we up here in Lomira/Brownsville area had like 15 inches of snow? Will be interesting to see how this one all plays out.

    • Cliff,

      This should be a fairly wet storm. I don’t think this is the storm you are referencing though. That storm you are talking about was back in early December right? The 2 storms that correspond with this part of the c ycle were in late October and December.


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