It took its sweet time, but this morning’s stubborn cloud deck eventually broke apart this afternoon. Temperatures responded by popping into the low-to-mid 70s. The emergent sun destabilized the atmosphere sufficiently to trigger some evening showers/storms. These fade after dark and skies clear, setting up a sunny, but slightly cooler weekend behind today’s front.

Through Tonight: Shower and thunderstorms (which may be locally heavy) are possible this evening (mainly before dark) before skies gradually clear. Lows are seasonably cool, from the low 40s in the north and west suburbs to near 50 downtown.

The weekend: Both Saturday and Sunday are partly to mostly sunny and beautiful, with highs in the mid-to-upper 60s. Saturday night is partly cloudy, with lows from the mid-30s in the colder suburbs to the mid-40s downtown. Winds are generally light from the northwest, at 6-13 mph during the day and calm to 5 mph at night.

See Camden Walker’s forecast into early next week. And if you haven’t already, join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock.

Plains dust storm: Drawing comparisons to the Dust Bowl, a massive cloud of dust enveloped parts of the southern and central Plains Thursday. The dust plume could be seen on satellite imagery from southwest Nebraska into northern Oklahoma, where limited visibility resulted in a multi-vehicle accident in northern Oklahoma, the Associated Press reported. The dust today shifted into parts of the Tennessee Valley, Georgia and Alabama. Read more at Climate Central on the causes.| Video