Wednesday will bring a treat — no trick — with the warmest day since Halloween in the Quad-Cities.
Tim Gross, meteorologist with the National Weather Service, Davenport, said the high Wednesday will be 61 degrees, the highest temperature since Oct. 31.
The normal high for this time of year is 47. The normal low is 28.
“The whole day will be above freezing,” Gross said. “Any snow piles will have more than 24 hours above freezing to melt.”
Wednesday afternoon will get a little breezy and there's a chance of rain, but “It’s going to feel amazing,” Gross said.
But that same warmth will contribute to already-rising rivers:
- The Mississippi River at Lock and Dam 15, Davenport — flood stage at 15 feet. The river measured 8 feet on Tuesday. Gross said he expects it to rise to 17.5 feet by Sunday evening, depending on the rainfall amount.
- The Rock River in Moline — flood stage at 12 feet. The river measured 13.3 Tuesday afternoon, at moderate flood stage, and continues to rise. Gross said he expects it to rise to 14.9 feet by Sunday afternoon.
- The Mississippi River at Muscatine — flood stage at 16 feet. On Tuesday, the river was 10 and rising. By Monday, the river is expected to rise to 19.3 feet or higher, depending on rainfall.
- A flood warning has been issued for two spots along the Maquoketa River in eastern Iowa. The National Weather Service says the warning includes the river at U.S. Highway 20 and at the city of Maquoketa. The river is expected to rise to 29.5 feet by Wednesday evening — 5 1/2 feet above flood stage of 24 feet.
On Tuesday afternoon, Davenport activated its flood plan, which includes periodic lane reductions and closures, closure of Credit Island and possible removal of the boat dock at Marquette Landing.
The St. Patrick's Day Parade and Race will not be affected, according to a city release.
“There’s a lot of snow up north in Minnesota, Wisconsin and northeast Iowa,” Gross said. “There’s a lot of water in that snow, and the ground is frozen. You combine all that with the additional rainfall we’re getting, that’s why the Mississippi is going up.”
In the meantime, Quad-Citians are taking to the streets — some walking, some driving with their windows down and others on two wheels.
“Everybody’s got cabin fever,” said Mark Brenny, of Brenny’s Motorcycle Clinic, Bettendorf. Even when the weather was bad, he said, people started to think about riding. “A week ago, on a Saturday, I sold seven bikes.
"Tax money’s coming back and people are really sick of winter. The phones are ringing. It’s nuts.”
The Quad-Cities will experience a bit of a cool-down after Wednesday. On Thursday, the temperature will top out at 59 degrees in the morning, before a cold front comes through in the early afternoon.
Temperatures will drop closer to normal and a little below. Friday’s high will be about 40 degrees.