OTTUMWA — As summers go, this year has been unusually comfortable. Heat will build back into the area over the next week, but it will only push things back to normal.
July is, on average, the hottest month of the year for southeastern Iowa. The highest average daily high of the year holds sway for about three weeks in the month. In Ottumwa, that's 86 degrees. Knoxville, while farther north, is slightly hotter in July. Its average high temperature peaks at 89 on July 17.
Forecasters believe the next week will see a return to near-average temperatures. This weekend should be clear with highs in the mid-80s. Overnight lows will dip into the upper 60s.
A chance of rain returns on Sunday. That will remain part of the forecast through Tuesday night. With the chance of rain comes a return to humid conditions, which the National Weather Service says will make it feel considerably hotter.
It's too early to say whether Tuesday, which has the highest chances for rain in the next week, will be a complete washout. But the NWS Des Moines office says storms that day could be strong. It's too early for a more precise estimate, but it could be a day to keep an eye on the weather conditions.
That's later, though. This weekend should be pleasant.