It’s time for everyone to head for home, all of you spring breakers and snow birds. Our early April drive will take us from beautiful Tucson up to the eastern shores of Lake Michigan, where I promise lake effect season is almost done. It is a 3 1/2 day trek, covering 1904 miles of the heartland. The three full days will involve 544 miles of travel at 68mph. Nice round numbers. Let’s hope the whole day trip is as accommodating.
DAY ONE (Sunday)
A little clipper of a system is organizing in the Montana foothills right now, and it will move towards the Upper Midwest through the day on Sunday. Something to keep an eye on for later in the day and later in the week. It will likely induce some cross wind from the south, especially later in the day as a cold front organizes through central Colorado. Fortunately, we will be enchanted by New Mexico without any other weather concerns on Sunday. We will make it to the ghost town of Cuervo, just past our entrance to I-40 east of Santa Rosa, New Mexico.
DAY TWO (Monday)
As the tail of the cold front to our north gets mixed up with hotter, more humid air in Texas and Oklahoma, it will start to churn up a bit more activity. We will have a dry time through the Texas Panhandle, but nearly the entire stretch of our drive in Oklahoma will be under the threat of showers and storms. Fortunately, we will be on the cold side of the feature by the time activity really gets going, but it will still be wet, with greater coverage northeast from Oklahoma City. We will get to Claremore, just past Tulsa, before we call it a night.
DAY THREE (Tuesday)
Tuesday’s drive will be a master class in timing. Precipitation will blossom in the southern Mississippi Valley, shifting towards the southern Atlantic states. We will probably catch a bit of the back end of the system as we pass through Illinois, but by and large, we will avoid any significant weather on Tuesday. We dodged that system! Meanwhile, yet another feature is emerging in the northern Plains, bigger and stronger than the last one. This is going to start sliding southeast, robbed of some moisture by the preceding storm, but gnarly enough in its own way. This next storm will arrive in Odell, Illinois, a couple of hours after we do. Bullets dodged.
DAY FOUR (Wednesday)
After a pretty fortuitous drive on Tuesday, things are going to be a little bit different on Wednesday. The next system is going to have a well put together cold front, running essentially along a line from Muskegon to Odell, We will be in windy rain through just about the entirety of the drive, including some spots of sleet as cold air tries to press in. Pretty gross. Don’t let it spoil your opinion of Muskegon, though.