Snow showers may fly this weekend north of Lake Superior; Frost potential Saturday Night and Sunday Night over parts of the Northland.

/Issued 4:50 PM CDT, Thursday, May 30, 2013/

-Here’s a 7-day plot of rainfall totals, ending the Morning of May 30, 2013.  Iowa has been hit repeatedly by round after round of heavy rain and thunderstorms with rain totals anywhere from 1.50″ to over 8.00″!  Far Southern Minnesota has also seen quite a bit of rain, but lesser amounts have occurred farther north.  (Source, Midwest Regional Climate Center)


Drought update for Minnesota
Source:  Climate Prediction Center

As of May 28, 2013:

*19% of the state is in Moderate Drought, down from 23% last week.
*3% of the state is in Severe Drought, down from 6% last week.

Note:  59% of Minnesota is now drought-free which is up from 19% last week.  Big time improvement in just 7 days.

Weather Tidbits:

*So far this month there’s been 5 days with a high temperature of at least 70F at Duluth, Minnesota and 1 day with a high temperature of at least 80F.  May 2012 had 6 days with highs in the 70s and 3 days with highs in the 80s.

*48.8 degrees the average temperature for May thru the 29th.  This is 2.3 degrees colder than average.

*3.15″ of rain in Duluth this month (thru the 29th)  This is 0.15″ wetter than average. 

Rainfall report for May 29-30 (ending around 7 AM Today)
Source:  National Weather Service Duluth, MN

Duluth, MN:  0.60″
Brainerd, MN:  0.50″
Hayward, WI:  0.48″
Ashland, WI:  0.35″
3 NE of Nisswa, MN:  0.67″
3 E of Wright, MN:  0.60″
Dixon Lake, MN:  0.37″
12 N of Grand Rapids, MN:  0.60″
Grand Portage, MN:  0.44″
2 S of Tower, MN:  0.56″
9 N of Bayfield, WI:  0.61″
Sarona, WI:  0.69″

Today’s Weather Summary for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

A strong area of low pressure averaging 992mb was over Northwest South Dakota as of 4 PM with a stationary front across Northcentral Minnesota and a cold front heading east out of the Western Dakotas.  Mostly cloudy to partly sunny skies were found in our area Today with some fog near Lake Superior.  Scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms have also occurred Today in parts of the Northland but with limited instability and shear in place none of the storms were very organized.  Highs were in the 40s near Lake Superior and in the 60s and 70s elsewhere with dew points away from Lake Superior in the 50s and 60s.  Winds Today were out of the south or east at 10 to 20 mph.

Forecast Discussion for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Short Term Forecast – Confidence:  High.

Tonight through Friday Night (May 30th-31st)

A deep area of low pressure will move slowly east through the Northern Plains and into the Upper Midwest by Tomorrow Night.  A stationary front will be over Northern Minnesota through Tomorrow with a cold front/occluded front sweeping through the Northland from SW-NE Friday Afternoon and Night.  Partly to mostly cloudy skies are expected this period with occasional showers and a few thunderstorms.  A lack of wind shear and generally marginal amounts of instability should keep any thunderstorm from turning severe Tonight and Friday but locally heavy downpours are possible along with a slight chance for some gusty winds and small hail especially Friday Afternoon/Evening in Eastern Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin.

Low temperatures Tonight will be in the 50s and 60s.  Highs Tomorrow in the 60s and 70s.  Lows Tomorrow Night in the 40s and 50s.  Note:  It will be cooler near Lake Superior where areas of fog will also persist at times.

-Rainfall forecast valid until 7 PM CDT Friday.  Note the 2 areas of heavier rain totals, one north of Minnesota, the other south of Minnesota.  (Source, Weather Prediction Center)

Extended Forecast – Confidence:  High.

Saturday through Monday (June 1st-3rd)

Some rain showers are possible on Saturday as low pressure and an upper level trough move through the Upper Midwest and Western Great Lakes.  High pressure returns and brings dry conditions to our area for Sunday and Monday.  Highs in the 50s and 60s Saturday-Monday with lows Saturday Night and Sunday Night in the 30s and 40s.  Note:  Patchy frost is possible Saturday Night and Sunday Night.

Long Range Forecast – Confidence:  High.

(June 4th-9th)

Another system looks like it could bring some showers to NE Minnesota and NW Wisconsin next Tuesday-Thursday (4th-6th)  Doesn’t look like a real big system however as high pressure to our north/east results in a very cool/stable environment here in the Northland.  Might get into a drier weather pattern from the 7th-9th.  Near to below average temperatures are forecast during this period.

5 DAY FORECAST FOR DULUTH/SUPERIOR

.Tonight…  Areas of fog.  Considerable cloudiness.  Scattered showers possible.  Low 50 to 55 and in the 40s near Lake Superior.  Wind east to southeast at 10 to 20 mph.

.Friday…  Areas of fog possible near Lake Superior.  Partly to mostly cloudy.  Scattered showers possible, mainly late in the Afternoon.  High 68 to 73 but cooler near Lake Superior.  Wind south to southeast at 10 to 20 mph.

.Friday Night…  Scattered showers possible.  Mostly cloudy.  Low 45 to 50.  Wind east to northeast at 5 to 15 mph.

.Saturday…  Mostly cloudy.  Showers possible.  High 50 to 55.

.Saturday Night…  Becoming partly cloudy.  Low 38 to 43.

.Sunday…  Partly sunny.  High 57 to 62.

.Sunday Night…  Mostly clear.  Low 38 to 43.

.Monday…  Partly cloudy.  High 60 to 65.

Normal temperatures for Today

High:  66
Low:  44

Sunrise Friday:  5:19 AM CDT
Sunset Friday:   8:55 PM CDT

Tim

-Tornado Watch for parts of NW Wisconsin until 7 PM Tonight

/Issued 12:18 PM CDT, Thursday, May 30, 2013/

Areas in red are under a tornado watch until 7 PM Tonight.  Source, NWS Storm Prediction Center.

*TORNADO WATCH number 250 information statement*

Expiration time:  7 PM CDT This Evening.

Counties included in the watch are:

Ashland WI
Iron WI
Washburn WI
Sawyer WI
Price WI

Some cities included in the watch are:

Ashland…Clam Lake…Mellen…Butternut…Upson…Hurley…Gile…Montreal…Minong…Spooner…Shell Lake…Hayward…Exeland…Winter…Park Falls…Phillips…and Ogema.

Hazards:

-Several tornadoes possible.
-Several damaging wind gusts to 70 mph possible.
-Several large hail events to 1.5″ in diameter possible.

A tornado watch means that conditions are favorable for severe thunderstorms and tornadoes in and close to the watch area.  Be alert for rapidly changing weather conditions and stay tuned to NOAA weather radio for possible warnings.

Tim

 

Late Afternoon weather update – 4 PM.

/Issued 4:30 PM CDT, Wednesday May 29, 2013/

-Late Afternoon weather update for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Through Friday, May 31, 2013:

Strong low pressure will move into the Northern Plains through Friday.  A warm front currently over Southern Minnesota will lift slowly north and is forecast to reach Northern Minnesota where it will then become stationary Thursday Afternoon into Friday.  A cold front will push E/NE out of Western Minnesota and should pass through the Northland sometime on Friday.

The airmass ahead of this spring storm will be rather moist and somewhat unstable.  Dew points are expected to be in the 50s and 60s with PWS ranging from 1.00″-1.50″ at times.  CAPE (instability) will generally be around 1000 j/kg or less into Friday with Lifted Indices of -1 to -4C, could be a little higher though come Friday PM.

Forcing associated with the frontal boundaries, surface low, and upper level trough will help to produce occasional showers and thunderstorms in the Northland from Tonight through Friday.  The rain won’t be continuous,  but multiple bands of showers/convection are forecast to affect NE Minnesota and NW Wisconsin during the next few days.  With all the moisture in place there will be a threat for some locally heavy downpours.

The overall severe thunderstorm threat isn’t the greatest as I’ve pointed out the past few days, some ingredients needed for severe storms are in place, but others are not.  The mid and upper level winds are generally on the low end of the scale when looking for severe weather.  The low level jet looks strongest on Thursday, otherwise the LLJ will be fairly weak.  Wind shear isn’t the best either.  So, with all that said I don’t think will have to worry too much about severe thunderstorms in the Northland, but there certainly is an isolated threat for severe thunderstorms Tonight, Thursday Afternoon/Evening, and possibly again Friday Afternoon/Evening.  Hail and gusty winds would be the main hazards from stronger storms.  Remember though, any thunderstorm produces lightning and that is always a major concern.

Temperature forecast:

Tonight and Thursday Night:  50s and lower 60s with 40s near Lake Superior.
Thursday and Friday:  60s and 70s but cooler near Lake Superior.

Tim

1 PM weather update – severe thunderstorm outlook

/Issued 1:11 PM CDT, Wednesday, May 29th, 2013/

-Severe thunderstorm potential for Today and Tonight.  Slight risk covers all of Minnesota except for the Northern part of the state.  (Source, Storm Prediction Center)

-Tornado threat through Tonight.  5% chance covers much of Western/Southern Minnesota.  Smaller chances farther north/east (2%)

-Large hail threat through Tonight.  

-Damaging wind threat through Tonight.

Midday severe weather update

The NWS Storm Prediction Center has a Slight Risk for severe thunderstorms out for Today and Tonight for parts of the Northland.  The risk area is roughly along and south of a line from Bemidji to Duluth to Iron River to Park Falls.

Hazards:

-Large hail to 1.00″ in diameter.
-Thunderstorm wind gusts of 60 mph or greater.
-Heavy downpours.
-Dangerous lightning.

Synopsis:

A warm front was moving into Southern Minnesota early This Afternoon.  A small cluster of showers and thunderstorms continued as of 1 PM well north of this boundary across parts of Central Minnesota.  Additional showers and thunderstorms could develop during the rest of the Afternoon and Tonight as the warm front lifts slowly toward the north.  There should be enough instability and wind shear in place to produce a few strong or severe thunderstorms especially late This Afternoon and Evening generally along and south of Highway 2 with perhaps a slightly higher chance occurring from Brainerd toward Hinckley, Pine City and Siren.

*When Thunder Roars Get Indoors

*Keep an eye to the sky and make sure you have a way to be notified should a watch or warning be issued for your area.  Remember, know the County you live in.

*A severe t’storm or tornado watch means that conditions are favorable for the development of severe weather and or tornadoes in and close to the watch area.

*A warning means that severe thunderstorms or tornadoes are occurring or imminent.

Tim

Tuesday’s Weather Report; Nearing 70 over the hill in Duluth Tomorrow; Latest on the shower/t’storm chances.

/Issued 3:50 PM CDT, Tuesday, May 28th, 2013/

-Although the greatest risk for severe thunderstorms and tornadoes looks like it’ll remain south of Minnesota the next few days, there still is an isolated risk for severe thunderstorms Wednesday and Thursday in parts of the Gopher state.

– Tomorrow’s risk is mainly for Southern Minnesota, but on Thursday that risk area might shift into Western and perhaps Central Minnesota.

The map below is for Thursday Evening (7pm) 0-1 km Energy Helicity Index per 18z NAM/WRF model.

I’m noticing a trend that would support at least a spotty severe t’storm risk Thursday PM in Westcentral Minnesota.  This would be tied with the surface low as well as near a cold front that’ll lift NE into Minnesota on Thursday. 

The EHI (Energy Helicity Index) is one of many parameters that are used for severe weather forecasting.  Note the green colors in parts of Westcentral Minnesota on Thursday, values around 1 are enough to cause supercells if other ingredients are present, which in this case some other things are decent, others are not so good.  Stay tuned. 

Today’s Weather Summary for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Finally beginning to see the ridge of high pressure which kept the Northland mainly high and dry lately move farther off to our east, the first sign of that is the higher dew point temperatures in our area Today with 40s and even a few 50s showing up away from Lake Superior.  High temperatures were mainly in the 60s with a few 70s as well.  Cooler 40s were found closer to Lake Superior.  Mostly cloudy to partly sunny skies prevailed Today with winds out of the south or east at 10 to 20 mph.

Weather Tidbits:

*So far this month there have been zero thunderstorm days at Duluth, Minnesota.  Only 1 thunderstorm day so far this year.  Note:  Last May had 12 thunderstorm days.  The yearly average is 30-35 t’storm days.

Forecast Discussion for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Short Term Forecast – Confidence:  High.

Tonight (May 28th)

Partly to mostly cloudy skies are expected with a warm front remaining well to our south while an upper level disturbance passes NW of our area.  A few showers are possible Tonight, mainly in far Northern Minnesota.  Lows will be in the 40s and 50s with south or east winds at 5 to 15 mph.

Wednesday and Wednesday Night (May 29th)

A strong area of low pressure will be centered over the Western High Plains with a warm front lifting slowly north into the Upper Midwest and Western Great Lakes.  Moisture and instability will be increasing this period thanks in part to a 30-50 knot southerly low level jet.  Dew points away from Lake Superior are forecast to climb into the 50s and lower 60s with CAPE of around 500 j/kg and Lifted Indices of 0 to -3C.  Most of Tomorrow should be dry in the Northland, but scattered showers or thunderstorms are expected to develop by late Tomorrow Afternoon or Evening and this threat will linger through the Overnight hours.  Not looking for any severe thunderstorms this period, but locally heavy downpours and small hail can’t be ruled out in a few of the storms.  Highs on Wednesday will be in the 60s and 70s with cooler temperatures near Lake Superior.  Lows Wednesday Night will be in the 50s to lower 60s but it will be cooler near Lake Superior.  South or east winds are forecast at 10 to 20 mph.

*Rainfall forecast for Wednesday Evening-Thursday, ending at 7 PM Thursday.  Looks like a widespread 0.50-1.00″+ rain totals in Minnesota.  (Source, Weather Prediction Center)

Extended Forecast – Confidence:  Medium.

Thursday through Saturday (May 30th-June 1st)

A slow moving upper level trough will dominate our weather during this period.  Low pressure tied to this whole system is forecast to pass west/north of the Northland while a cold front moves through between Thursday Afternoon and Friday.  The threat for occasional showers or thunderstorms looks like it’ll continue on Thursday with more showers possible at times on Friday and Saturday, instability looks lower Friday into Saturday so thunderstorms shouldn’t be much of a problem.  However, on Thursday there should be enough instability around to produce at least a few thunderstorms.  Highs will be in the 60s and 70s Thursday and Friday and in the 50s and 60s on Saturday.  Lows Thursday Night and Friday Night will mainly be in the 50s.

Long Range Forecast – Confidence:  Medium.

(June 2nd-6th)

Sunday (2nd) looks dry at the moment as low pressure and upper trough exit to our east.  The next system to monitor will be from the 4th-6th, looks a little similar to the current system.  Showers are possible next Tuesday-Thursday.  Near to below average temperatures are forecast through this period.

5 DAY FORECAST FOR DULUTH/SUPERIOR

.Tonight…  Partly to mostly cloudy.  Low 40 to 45.  Wind east to southeast at 5 to 15 mph.

.Wednesday…  Partly sunny.  High 69 to 74 but cooler near Lake Superior.  Wind southeast at 10 to 15 mph.

.Wednesday Night…  Occasional showers or thunderstorms.  Mostly cloudy.  Low 50 to 55 but cooler near Lake Superior.  Wind southeast at 10 to 15 mph.

.Thursday…  Scattered showers or thunderstorms.  High 60 to 65 but cooler near Lake Superior.

.Thursday Night…  Scattered showers or isolated thunderstorms.  Low 50 to 55.

.Friday…  Scattered showers possible.  High 68 to 73.

.Friday Night…  Showers possible.  Low 45 to 50.

.Saturday…  Showers possible.  High 55 to 60.

Normal temperatures for Today

High:  66
Low:  44

Sunrise Wednesday:  5:20 AM CDT
Sunset Wednesday:   8:53 PM CDT

Tim