2/2/09: Monday’s Weather Report

Issued at 4:14 PM CST, Monday, February 2nd, 2009

Weather History:

On this date in 1991, a record high temperature of 47 degrees occurred at Duluth Minnesota.

On this date in 1996, a record low temperature of -39 degrees occurred at Duluth Minnesota.

Non thunderstorm wind damage occurred in Kabetogama and Gheen Minnesota in St. Louis County Saturday Night. Winds gusted over 50 mph in those areas with reports of power outages and snapped pine trees in the town of Gheen. There were also reports of white-out conditions at times in Gheen Saturday Night.

Surface Analysis at 21z:

Low pressure averaging 1012 mb was centered over Northern Lake Michigan. A trough attached to this low extended from Southwest Ontario to far Northeast Minnesota to Westcentral Lake Superior. High pressure averaging 1034 mb was moving into Western Manitoba.

Upper Air Analysis at 21z:

Pattern has shifted back to an H5 ridge from California to the Southwest U.S. with a trough covering areas from the Rockies through the Plains and Great Lakes region. An upper level low was centered over Western Lake Superior This Afternoon with another upper level low over Central Quebec. A blast of cold air has moved into Minnesota Today with 850 mb temps at 3 PM Today ranging from -22 degrees C in Western Minnesota to -16 to -20 degrees C elsewhere.

Today’s Weather:

Very interesting day around the region with localized very heavy lake effect snow around Lake Superior while the majority of Minnesota saw flurries at best along with partly sunny to mostly cloudy skies and cold early February temperatures and wind chills. The lake effect snow was caused by a convergence zone which was clearly evident This Afternoon over Westcentral Lake Superior with a boiling mass of clouds (almost thundery looking) per visibilte satellite imagery centered just south of Isle Royal moving no-where. Winds at the surface and aloft have dictated where the heavy lake effect snow occurred Today. The North Shore of Lake Superior, mainly from Beaver Bay northeast toward Tofte have seen the brunt of the lake snow Today with accumulations of 3 to 7 inches over those areas, winds from the NE occurred near the surface with more of an E-NE wind aloft along the North Shore which led to the lake effect snow Today. The local VWP here at Duluth has shown a NE wind aloft, but the winds near the surface have been too much out of the N-NW which has caused the heavy lake effect snow to remain northeast and east of the city. The heaviest snow as of 4 PM Today was over Southwest Lake Superior, moving onshore into Douglas County Wisconsin, mainly around the South Range, Wentworth, and Poplar areas. DBZ’S were up to 30 per Duluth Doppler Radar which indicates that this is some pretty intense snow over those areas with snowfall rates likely approaching an inch an hour underneath this band. High temperatures around Minnesota were in the single digits and teens with areas in Western and Northwest Minnesota staying in the single digits below zero. Winds across the state were out of the north or northwest at 10 to 20 mph with higher gusts. Wind chills around Minnesota were in the single digits, teens, and 20s below zero Today.

Temperatures around Minnesota at 4 PM ranged from 8 degrees at St. Paul to -2 degrees at Bemidji to -8 degrees at Detroit Lakes to 7 degrees at International Falls to 16 degrees at Silver Bay to -4 degrees at Wadena to 1 degree at Staples to 5 degrees at Rush City to 3 degrees at Canby to 9 degrees at Waseca to 10 degrees at Red Wing.

Tonight through Tuesday Night:

*Wind Chill Advisory* covers all but a part of Eastern Minnesota. The advisory expires later Tonight in Northwest and Westcentral Minnesota and remains in effect elsewhere through Tuesday Morning.

Arctic high pressure will be in control of our weather as it builds into Minnesota from the northwest. The upper low and trough causing areas of snow and flurries around Northeast and Eastcentral Minnesota late Today will head off to the east of Minnesota during the night. Additional accumulations along the North Shore of Lake Superior should generally be around an inch or less. All the winter storm warnings and advisories which were in effect through Midnight Tonight have been canceled for the North Shore of Lake Superior as of late This Afternoon. Look for partly to mostly cloudy skies around Minnesota Tonight with clear to partly cloudy skies expected Tomorrow and Tomorrow Night. Lows Tonight and Tuesday Night will be in the single digits, teens, and 20s below zero with highs Tuesday in the single digits below to above zero with some teens also possible. Winds will be out of the north or northwest through Tuesday at 10 to around 20 mph with southwest or northwest winds Tuesday Night. Wind chills Tonight through Tuesday Morning will range from 15 below to around 30 below around Minnesota.

Extended Forecast:

Arctic airmass will slide east of Minnesota by Mid-Week as southerly winds develop on the backside of the high and out ahead of a low which will pass well to the north of Minnesota on Thursday. A warm front and cold front attached to this low will pass through the state Wednesday Evening through Thursday, but at this time it doesn’t appear that any precipitation will accompany the passing fronts. High temperatures Wednesday will be in the single digits, teens, and 20s with nearly steady temperatures Wednesday Night. Highs Thursday will be mostly in the 20s and 30s with lows Thursday Night in the teens and 20s. By Friday and Saturday…Look for an area of low pressure to advance E-NE out of South Dakota and Nebraska, looks like the best chance for precipitation associated with this low will be to the east of Minnesota where the best low level jet will be located. We still could see some areas of light snow, ice, or rain over parts of Minnesota from late Friday into Saturday Morning, but it still doesn’t look like it’ll be too significant at this time. So that leads us to late this weekend into the following week and this is the time frame where two outcomes are possible. Solution number one is for a northwest flow to redevelop around Minnesota and an active southern stream over the Plains which would keep much of the lows and precip away from Minnesota since we would be under the influence of the northwest flow aloft. Solution number two is for the West Coast trough to amplify more causing the storm track to shift into Minnesota. Based on how this Winter has gone with most of November and practically all of January being controlled by a north or northwest flow aloft, one would have to believe that this type of pattern will linger around our area.

Forecast for Duluth/Superior:

.Tonight… A few snow showers or flurries possible This Evening. Low 5 below to 10 below. Wind northwest at 10 to 20 mph. Wind chills from 15 below to 25 below.

.Tuesday… Mostly sunny. High 5 to 10. Wind northwest around 15 mph.

.Tuesday Night… Mostly clear. Low 5 below to 10 below. Wind northwest around 12 mph.

.Wednesday… Mostly sunny. High 10 to 15.

.Wednesday Night… Partly to mostly cloudy. Low 5 to 10.

.Thursday… Partly sunny. High 25 to 30.

.Thursday Night… Partly cloudy. Low 10 to 15.

4 PM Thompson Hill Observation:

Current Temperature: 9.2 degrees

Dewpoint: 0 degrees

Humidity: 65%

Wind: NW at 7 mph G 18 mph

Max Temperature Today: 21.2 degrees

Max Humidity Today: 69%

Min Temperature Today: -3.6 degrees

Min Humidity Today: 55%

Normal High Temperature Tomorrow 21 degrees

Normal Low Temperature Tomorrow 1 degree

Tim

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