FRIDAY: Clouds will slowly decrease from west to east through the day, with afternoon highs struggling to climb out of the low to mid 30s. Northwesterly winds up to 15 mph will produce wind chills in the 20s through the afternoon. Winter officially starts at 4:23 PM as the sun’s direct rays cross the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern hemisphere. The winter solstice marks the shortest day and longest night of the year in the northern hemisphere.
TONIGHT: Temperatures will drop back into the upper 20s, feeling a lot like winter as we head into the first night of the season. Winds will begin to shift tonight out of the south, with many areas seeing wind chills fall into the lower 20s by Saturday morning.
EXTENDED: Christmas weekend looks mainly dry with lows in the upper 20s and highs climbing into upper 40s on Saturday, with a slightly cooler Sunday. There is a slight chance we could see some sprinkles early in the day Sunday. A zonal flow returns with westerly winds bringing disturbances to work through mid-Missouri, giving us limited rain chances. As far as Christmas Day, it looks to be a mild one, with highs in the mid to upper 40s and overnight lows in the 30s. Evening rain looks to be a possibility as our next storm system begins to take shape. A developing low over the southwestern portion of the US will gradually lift through the Midwest and bring widespread rain chances as we head from Wednesday into early Friday morning. The track of the low, if we’ll see all rain, and timing is yet to be determined due to model inconsistencies. Once the system tracks through Mid-Missouri, it will lead to the return to cooler conditions, with highs struggling to climb into the lower 40s by weeks end. Stick with ABC 17 News on air and online for the latest changes to tracks and forecasts.