A blast of bitterly cold arctic air is set to come crashing into Wisconsin, including the Milwaukee metro area, during the day on Wednesday, forecasters say.
The temperature is forecast to keep dropping during the day on Wednesday across southern Wisconsin. Wind chill advisories are posted for the overnight hours Wednesday into Thursday morning for much of the state generally west of a line from of Green Bay to Janesville.
"There's an arctic front coming," said Mark Gehring, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Sullivan. "From 4 a.m. to 8 a.m. (Wednesday) we'll have a big drop in temperatures."
This is all being caused by a storm moving across Lake Superior and dragging a cold front behind it that will send cold air pouring into Wisconsin.
"In the early morning hours, temperatures are going to crash," Gehring said. The temperature will keep dropping during the day on Wednesday, he added.
"We think it will drop all the way down into the teens," during the day on Wednesday, Gehring added.
The storm is expected to bring snow to northern Wisconsin and Michigan's upper peninsula.
For southern Wisconsin on Wednesday, winds will shift and blow out of the north-northwest, sending wind chills plummeting during the day, Gehring said.
The winds are forecast to gust to 30 mph. "The wind isn't going to help at all," he said.
Anybody who is going to be outside early Wednesday and again early Thursday, including kids waiting at school bus stops, should be bundled up against the cold, Gehring said.
The wind chill — what it actually feels like outside — will be down around zero to minus 5 for much of the day on Wednesday, Gehring said.
"It's going to be a nasty morning and it is not going to warm up in the afternoon," on Wednesday, Gehring said. "It's not going to be a real pleasant day."
Actual low temperatures on Wednesday and Thursday night in Milwaukee near Lake Michigan will range from zero to 5 above zero, but will be "well below zero," inland and to the west of the Milwaukee metro, Gehring said.
It won't warm up much during the day. The high temperature on Thursday in Waukesha is forecast to be 11 degrees. In Milwaukee, the forecast high is 13 on Thursday.
Further north, it will be even colder. The high temperature in Wausau on Thursday is forecast to be 6 degrees with the low temperature forecast to hit minus 16 overnight Thursday.
Temperatures will moderate across southern Wisconsin by the weekend, with the high temperature in Milwaukee on Saturday forecast to be 24 degrees.
We're gaining daylight
For those who hate winter, there is some good news. Southern Wisconsin has gained about 30 minutes of daylight since late December, when the winter solstice brings the longest nights and shortest days of the year to the region.
Our subscribers make this reporting possible. Please consider supporting local journalism by subscribing to the Journal Sentinel at jsonline.com/deal.
DOWNLOAD THE APP: Get the latest news, sports and more
This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Wisconsin cold: Temperatures to drop, wind chills of below 0 forecast