A front moving out of the Dakotas will lead to the threat of strong to severe storms developing later today in South Dakota, Minnesota and Northern Iowa. The storms look to first fire up in in South Dakota and Southwestern Minnesota during the late afternoon between 3 to 5 PM.
Storms wills tart to develop downstream from the Minnesota and South Dakota storms into northwest Iowa. There will be strong instability and a push of energy will rotate in from the Dakotas increase storm development. Strong updrafts look to develop with any storms that look to form and these storms may quickly lead to large hail early on in the storm event. Storms are more likely to start forming after 7 PM and through midnight.
Besides hail, the atmosphere dynamics are also favorable for damaging winds. The cool mid-levels could lead to strong winds from the storms. The part of the state most likely to experience those winds will be northeast Iowa and across into Wisconsin and storms quickly move east through the late night.
The tornado risk appears to be low with the shear in the lower levels of the atmosphere minimal and lifting condensation levels high.
The Slight Risk area for severe storms is along and north of Highway 20 and includes Fort Dodge and Algona. Mason City is included in the Enhanced Risk Area which has a higher potential of storms that may produce damaging winds.
We are not anticipating severe storms to impact Central Iowa. These storms may move south after midnight, but they will lose their intensity as they move further south and the night gets later. A line of some scattered showers and thunderstorms may briefly move through Ames and Des Moines between 2 and 4 AM.
Wednesday will be a sunny day with a few clouds and highs back in the upper 80s.
Another potential for severe weather develops on Thursday evening for Western Iowa. As of Tuesday morning, severe storms look to develop in Nebraska on Thursday afternoon and move into Western Iowa late Thursday night.
Watch the full forecast for Central Iowa here.