With the calendar ready to soon flip the page to the month of October, many are beginning to wonder when the first freeze of the year will happen.
State Climatologist Trent Ford researched past data and median dates and says a hard freeze is not likely to happen soon.
“That range is from mid-October in the northwest corner of the state and a few pockets in central Illinois. To late October, pretty much between I-80 and I-70, and then south of I-80 we are talking about very late October into early November, is the typical time for our first fall freeze.”
Farmers are especially concerned about an early hard freeze as they are anticipating a lengthy harvest season this fall.
Ford said that even though forecasting farther out in the season can be difficult to do with great accuracy, the Climate Prediction Center is optimistic that first hard freeze will not happen earlier than normal.
“After that the probabilities become more mixed. Certainly as you go out to the early to mid, event to late October there is less certainty in those forecasts, but the outlook is not looking at this point that an early fall freeze is imminent for the state.”
Ford said that a hard freeze occurs when the temperature is at or below 28 degrees.