Beau Dodson's WeatherTalk Blog

April 4, 2015: Calm weather for Saturday and Sunday. Storms next week.

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This forecast update covers far southern Illinois, far southeast Missouri, and far western Kentucky. See the coverage map on the right side of the blog.

Remember that weather evolves.  Check back frequently for updates, especially during active weather.

The forecast numbers below may vary quite a bit across the region.  These are averages.

Saturday – Mostly sunny.  Chilly morning.  Morning temperatures will start out in the 30’s to lower 40’s.  Temperatures by the afternoon will warm up into the 50’s.  Winds becoming southerly at 5-10 mph.  My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans? 

Saturday night –  Frost advisory.  Mostly clear and chilly. Frost possible.   Lows in the middle 30’s.  South winds at 5 mph. My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?  No

Frost advisory outline


Sunday – Some sun during the morning.  Perhaps an increase in clouds late in the day.  Chilly morning but milder by afternoon.  Highs will be in the 60’s.  South winds at 10-15 mph.  My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is high
Should I cancel my outdoor plans? 

Sunday night – Increasing clouds with a chance for showers and thunderstorms. South winds at 10 mph.  Lows in the 48 to 54 degree range.  My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is medium
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?

Monday – Partly cloudy with a chance for a shower or thunderstorm. High temperatures around 65-70 degrees.  South winds at 10-15 mph.  My confidence in this part of the forecast verifying is medium
Should I cancel my outdoor plans?
Monitor updates…rain could be back in the picture.

Eclipse Forecast – It does appear we will clear out tonight.  Hope you are able to view the eclipse.

When?  Saturday morning.  The moon may set before the start of the total eclipse, keep that in mind.
More information on the eclipse – click here

Central Daylight Time (April 4, 2015)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 5:16 a.m. CDT
Total eclipse begins: 6:58 a.m. CDT
Greatest eclipse: 7:00 a.m. CDT
Total eclipse ends: 7:03 a.m. CDT
Moon may set before start of total eclipse



Current Temperatures Around The Local Area

Don’t forget to check out the Southern Illinois Weather Observatory web-site for weather maps, tower cams, scanner feeds, radars, and much more!  Click here



An explanation of what is happening in the atmosphere over the coming days…


1.  Cooler for Saturday.  Damp ground conditions.
2.  Not quite as cool on Sunday.  Nice afternoon temperatures.
3.  Thunderstorm chances return on Sunday night into much of next week.
4.  Will need to monitor next week for heavy rain and some strong storms.

Well, we had a bit of a whirlwind of 48 hours.  Lot of rain fell in the region.  Some of you ended up with a lot more rain than others.  Flooding was reported over parts of the area.

Here is the radar estimated rainfall.  This graphic isn’t picking up on some of the higher totals in our region.  But, you get the general idea of what happened.  Click image for larger view.


Calmer weather will be the rule for Saturday and Easter Sunday.  Cold mornings, but decent afternoon temperatures.  Saturday will be the coolest of the two days.  Highs may not get out of the 50’s on Saturday.  Sunday, however, we should see some 60’s.  With some April sun, it won’t feel too bad  outside.

Showers and thunderstorms return by Sunday night as a warm front lifts back into the area.  Some chances on Monday, as well.

A large storm system will sit in the Central United States next week.  This will throw spokes of disturbances into our region.  On and off rain and storm chances appear likely.  Some locally heavy rain possible.  We will have to monitor for more severe weather chances, as well.

Rainfall through Sunday (Sunday night and Monday morning for this graphic)


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River stages are going to increase over the coming week.  Heavy rainfall in the Ohio and Tennessee Valley river basins are the reason for the rises.

Here are the current river stage forecasts.   You can click your state and then the dot for your location.  It will bring up the full forecast and hydrograph.

Click Here For River Stage Forecasts…

Here are some current forecast hydrographs.  These will be updated each day with new information.

Smithland Lock and Dam

Paducah, Kentucky Forecast Stage

Cairo, Illinois



No.  Calm weather for Saturday and Sunday. Chilly mornings.



The wild card tells you where the uncertainties are in the forecast

Wild card in this forecast – Whether or not a few spots might see frost tonight.  Low chances, overall.  If the winds die down then a few favored cold spots might have a little light frost.



Can we expect severe thunderstorms over the next 24 to 48 hours?  Remember that a severe thunderstorm is defined as a thunderstorm that produces 58 mph winds or higher, quarter size hail or larger, and/or a tornado.

Thunderstorm threat level is  ZERO for Saturday and ZERO for Sunday.  Sunday night we will see a few storms.  Level ONE for Sunday night.

Saturday Severe Weather Outlook – No severe storms
Sunday Severe Weather Outlook – No severe storms
Sunday night and Monday – Monitor updates
Tuesday-Thursday – Monitor updates






This section of the blog is speculative forecast information.  Because it is past the range of what meteorologists can forecast accurately, it should be considered speculation.  Anything past day 5 is considered a long range forecast.

The main concern in the long range is going to be additional showers and thunderstorms next week.  I can’t rule out severe weather chances next week.

Heavy rain is going to be a concern next week.  A front will stall out near our region.  Several rounds of storms will be possible.

I will have more information over the coming days.  Pretty tired after the last 2 days of monitoring storms.

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Current WARNINGS (a warning means take action now). Click on your county to drill down to the latest warning information. Keep in mind that there can be a 2-3 minute delay in the updated warning information.

I strongly encourage you to use a NOAA Weather Radio or warning cell phone app for the most up to date warning information. Nothing is faster than a NOAA weather radio.

Color shaded counties are under some type of watch, warning, advisory, or special weather statement.  Click your county to view the latest information.

Missouri Warnings

Illinois Warnings

Kentucky Warnings



Here is the official 6-10 day and 8-14 day temperature and precipitation outlook.  Check the date stamp at the top of each image (so you understand the time frame).

The forecast maps below are issued by the Weather Prediction Center (NOAA).

The latest 8-14 day temperature and precipitation outlook.  Note the dates are at the top of the image.  These maps DO NOT tell you how high or low temperatures or precipitation will be.  They simply give you the probability as to whether temperatures or precipitation will be above or below normal.


Who do you trust for your weather information and who holds them accountable?

I have studied weather in our region since the late 1970’s.  I have 37 years of experience in observing our regions weather patterns.  My degree is in Broadcast Meteorology from Mississippi State University and an Associate of Science (AS).  I am currently working on my Bachelor’s Degree in Geoscience.  Just need to finish two Spanish classes!

I am a member of the American Meteorological Society.  I am a NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador.  And, I am the Meteorologist for McCracken County Emergency Management.

I own and operate the Southern Illinois Weather Observatory.

There is a lot of noise on the internet.  A lot of weather maps are posted without explanation.  Over time you should learn who to trust for your weather information.

My forecast philosophy is simple and straight forward.

  • Communicate in simple terms
  • To be as accurate as possible within a reasonable time frame before an event
  • Interact with you on Twitter, Facebook, and the blog
  • Minimize the “hype” that you might see on television or through other weather sources
  • Push you towards utilizing wall-to-wall LOCAL TV coverage during severe weather events

I am a recipient of the Mark Trail Award, WPSD Six Who Make A Difference Award, Kentucky Colonel, and the Caesar J. Fiamma” Award from the American Red Cross.  In 2009 I was presented with the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety Award.  I was recognized by the Kentucky House of Representatives for my service to the State of Kentucky leading up to several winter storms and severe weather outbreaks.

If you click on the image below you can read the Kentucky House of Representatives Resolution.


I am also President of the Shadow Angel Foundation which serves portions of western Kentucky and southern Illinois.

Many of my graphics are from – a great resource for weather data, model data, and more



This blog was inspired by ABC 33/40’s Alabama Weather Blog – view their blog


Current tower cam view from the Weather Observatory- Click here for all cameras.

Southern Illinois Weather Observatory

The Weather Observatory


Southern Illinois Weather Observatory

WSIL TV 3 has a number of tower cameras. Click here for their tower camera page & Illinois Road Conditions

Marion, Illinois


WPSD TV 6 has a number of tower cameras. Click here for their tower camera page & Kentucky Road Conditions & Kentucky Highway and Interstate Cameras

Downtown Paducah, Kentucky


Benton, Kentucky Tower Camera – Click here for full view

Benton, Kentucky


I24 Paducah, Kentucky

I24 Mile Point 9 – Paducah, KY

I24 – Mile Point 3 Paducah, Kentucky



You can sign up for my AWARE email by clicking here I typically send out AWARE emails before severe weather, winter storms, or other active weather situations. I do not email watches or warnings. The emails are a basic “heads up” concerning incoming weather conditions.

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