OTTUMWA — Goodbye Oktoberfest, hello winter?
Calling the weather late this week wintry is probably overselling it, but it’s going to feel cold as an unseasonably strong front works its way through the area. Most of the week will be pleasant, with highs in the upper 60s to low 70s through Thursday.
That’s approximately where things should be this time of year. The Midwestern Regional Climate Center shows Ottumwa’s average highs this week stay around 66-67 degrees.
Friday through the weekend is a completely different story. The high Friday probably won’t reach 60 degrees, according to the National Weather Service. That night’s low brings the first real chance of frost. Forecasters do not expect it to hit freezing in Ottumwa — the prediction is for 34 degrees — but it’s going to be a close call. Wind chills will be in the teens and 20s across much of the state.
Highs in the low-to-mid-50s will continue Saturday and Sunday, though the skies will be clear. That will help during the day, but will allow things to cool off quickly once the sun goes down.
The culprit for the plunge in temperatures is a cold front expected to begin affecting the area Wednesday night. That’s when a chance of showers moves in. Storms are not expected with the front, though showers will continue through midday Friday.