A week ago at this hour, it was -17°C outside and we had 230 mm of snow on the ground. Then the Polar Vortex hit, followed quickly by the biggest warm-up in Chicago history:
From 17:37 CST Tuesday the 29th until 23:51 Thursday the 31st, the temperature hung out below 0°F. But it had already started rising, from the near-record-low -30.6°C Wednesday morning until yesterday afternoon's near-record-high 10.6°C—a record-smashing total rise of Δ41°C.
This was the view from my office Friday evening, when the temperature hadn't been above freezing for a week and the lake was 44% frozen over:
This is half an hour ago:
The forecast calls for even weirder weather the next few days. Tonight we will get a once-a-decade ice storm, then gradually warming temperatures through Thursday and another winter blast Saturday.
Hey. This all builds character, right?