Despite balmy start to October, first taste of fall chill coming this weekend

"The dog days of October" will continue through Wednesday with highs in the mid-80s, the National Weather Service Chicago reports.

The warm temperatures - which fall short of record highs for the month - are expected to break later in the week, and they aren't likely to return. With a pair of cold fronts expected to bring much colder temperatures later in the week, meteorologists report that our first real taste of fall is on the horizon.

Tuesday's high is forecast to be between 82 and 89 degrees, and Wednesday's between 79 and 84. Record highs for early October hold in the lower 90s, with the highest being Oct. 6, 1963, when temperatures reached 94 degrees, according to National Weather Service records.

"We're still well below records," said Zachary Yack, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service Romeoville office. "However, our typical temperatures this time of year are usually sitting in the low to mid 70s on the high end, with most times more near the upper 60s to lower 70s. We're definitely about 10 degrees above average for this time of year."

The balmy start to the month follows a September that featured above-average temperatures for the Chicago area. Last month's average temperature was 69.5 degrees, 3.2 degrees above normal.

A strong cold front is expected to break the heat late Wednesday into Thursday, bringing showers and progressively cooler temperatures. Highs may only be in the 50s this weekend.

With signs of a possible warmup next week, the chilly weather could be short-lived - but the warmth would be mild.

"Looking kind of beyond (this week), it does look like there's some indication that we may get into a similar pattern that we are now, but it looks like the warmth may be somewhat muted," Yack said. "There's a chance we may get back toward the 60s, possibly 70s, but I think anything more than that doesn't look too likely at this point."

• Jenny Whidden,, is a climate change and environment writer working with the Daily Herald through a partnership with Report For America supported by The Nature Conservancy. To help support her work with a tax-deductible donation, see

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