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1/29/09: Thursday’s Weather Report

Issued at 4:24 PM CST, Thursday, January 29th, 2009

Weather History:

On this date in 2008, the high temperature reached 35 degrees at Duluth Minnesota, but a new blast of arctic air sent the low temperature plummeting to 19 degrees below zero on the same day. That’s a difference of 54 degrees in 24 hours!

Surface Analysis at 22z:

Low pressure averaging 1004 mb was centered over Eastern Ontario with high pressure averaging 1018 mb centered over Southern Manitoba.

Upper Air Analysis at 22z:

Northwest flow aloft has amplified a bit Today around the Upper Midwest as a new surge of arctic air spreads south into Minnesota behind the weak system that moved through last night. An upper level trough was seen on water vapor satellite imagery progressing east across the Upper Midwest and Upper Great Lakes Today with a few disturbances rotating south-southeast along and behind this upper trough. A 120-140 knot jet max was found from Central Saskatchewan Province through Eastern Montana and the Western Dakotas Today on the backside of this upper trough. 850 mb temperatures around Minnesota at 4 PM Today ranged from -18 degrees C across Northern Minnesota to -12 to -14 degrees C in Southern Minnesota. The coldest air with this latest arctic blast was found north-northeast of Minnesota Today where the lowest 500 mb heights were found and the coldest 850 mb temps of -20 to -22 degrees C were located.

Today’s Weather:

Partly to mostly cloudy skies covered Minnesota Today with a few light snow showers and flurries falling at times over parts of the state. Snow accumulations from Wednesday Afternoon through This Morning were generally an inch or less, but the Arrowhead of Minnesota picked up around two inches of snow thanks to some lake effect which occurred for a time on Wednesday. High temperatures around Minnesota were in the single digits below to above zero with teens and 20s farther South. Winds across the state were out of the north or west Today at 10 to 20 mph with some higher gusts over Western and Southern Minnesota. Afternoon wind chills were mostly in the single digits below to above zero with teens and even some 20s below farther North.

Temperatures at 4 PM around Minnesota ranged from 14 degrees at South St. Paul to -2 degrees at Hallock to -2 degrees at Detroit Lakes to 1 degree at International Falls to 7 degrees at Hibbing to 1 degree at Wadena to 10 degrees at Aitkin to 11 degrees at Rush City to 19 degrees at Pipestone to 18 degrees at St. James to 14 degrees at Dodge Center.

Tonight:

High pressure will be in control of Minnesota’s weather. Look for partly to mostly cloudy skies with any flurries ending during the Evening. Lows will be on the cold side with readings in the single digits, teens, and 20s below zero with some locations staying on the positive side of zero in Southwest Minnesota. Winds will be out of the west or northwest around 15 mph.

Friday and Friday Night:

Low pressure will tracking to the north-northeast of Minnesota during this period while a warm front moves into Minnesota from the west by Friday Night. Could see some flurries or some patchy light freezing drizzle develop over parts of Minnesota during this period as strong warm advection pattern develops. Look for partly to mostly cloudy skies Friday and Friday Night with highs in the single digits, teens, and 20s with nearly steady or slowly rising temperatures Friday Night. Winds during this period will shift to the south and southwest around 10 to 25 mph.

Extended Forecast:

Strong area of low pressure around 988 mb will be tracking into Central Canada this weekend. A push of warmer air will occur south of this low and ahead of a cold front on Saturday with 850 mb temps climbing to between +2 and +6 degrees C with the warmest air the farther South you go. Problem with getting this warm air above us to mix down to the surface will be the possibility for cloud-cover which could cause an inversion to develop allowing the warmest air to stay aloft, the best potential to see temperatures rise above 32 degrees on Saturday seems to be over Southwest and possibly Westcentral Minnesota, the rest of Minnesota should see highs mainly in the 20s to near 30 degrees. The period from Saturday Night through Monday will see an upper level trough move in from the west-northwest, this upper trough will deepen and cause a more amplified upper air pattern to develop as we head into the early to possibly mid part of next week. What will also help to amplify the pattern will be a potential bomb of a storm that could take shape and ride northeast along the Appalachins or slightly farther east from there from Monday through Wednesday of next week, this storm has the possibility of being a major system with a severe winter storm and possible blizzard to the west and northwest of the low track with flooding rains along and ahead of the track. This storm will stay well to the east of Minnesota, but it will still have some influence on our local weather since it will help to bring down another shot of arctic air early next week.

Low temperatures around Minnesota will be in the single digits, teens, and 20s Saturday Night with high temps on Sunday holding pretty steady from Saturday’s low temperatures. Lows Sunday Night will be in the single digits below to above zero with some teens farther South.

Low temperatures Monday Night and Tuesday Night of next week could drop back into the teens, 20s, and possibly even some 30s below zero over portions of Minnesota based off the latest GFS model run This Afternoon…The Euro model is slightly warmer, but still supports another cold push early next week.

Now, as I stated yesterday the weather pattern may change after the middle of next week once that monster storm along the East Coast moves out, this new pattern may lead to more active weather around the Upper Midwest for early and mid February, but this Winter has seen a very reluctant N/NW upper level flow pattern that just doesn’t wanna leave for long periods of time, this is reflected by the 18z GFS model run Today which shows a powerful 1064 mb arctic high building south out of the Yukon region and giving Minnesota another dose of arctic air toward the second week of February.

Forecast for Duluth/Superior:

.Tonight… Clear to partly cloudy. Low 4 below to 11 below. Wind northwest around 15 mph.

.Friday… Partly sunny. High 10 to 15. Wind becoming southwest at 10 to 15 mph.

.Friday Night… A few flurries possible. Mostly cloudy. Low 5 to 10 with slowly rising temperatures. Wind south to southwest at 10 to 15 mph.

.Saturday… Mostly cloudy. High 23 to 28.

.Saturday Night… Flurries possible. Mostly cloudy. Low 10 to 15.

.Sunday… Flurries possible. Partly to mostly cloudy. High 15 to 20.

.Sunday Night… Flurries possible. Partly to mostly cloudy. Low 4 below to 3 above.

4 PM Thompson Hill Observation:

Current Temperature: 9.3 degrees

Dewpoint: -3 degrees

Humidity: 56%

Wind: WSW at 7 mph G12 mph

Max Temperature Today: 13.3 degrees

Max Humidity Today: 89%

Min Temperature Today: 9.3 degrees through 5 PM Today.

Min Humidity Today: 51%

Normal High Temperature Tomorrow 20 degrees

Normal Low Temperature Tomorrow zero degrees

Tim

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