August 31, 2013 – Severe t-storm watch in effect until 9 PM Tonight.

/Issued 2:53 PM CDT, Saturday, August 31, 2013/

-A big blue box covers the Northland and much of Minnesota…This is a severe thunderstorm watch which is in effect until 9 PM CDT This Evening.  Stay weather aware!  (Source, NWS Storm Prediction Center)

Severe Thunderstorm Watch #507 has been issued for much of Minnesota, Western Lake Superior, and parts of Northwestern Wisconsin.  This watch is valid until 9 PM CDT This Evening.


-Several large hail events with a few very large hail events to 2.5″ in diameter possible.

-Several damaging wind gusts to 70 mph possible.

-A few tornadoes possible.

Counties in the Duluth area that are included in this watch are:

Koochiching MN
Itasca MN
Cass MN
Crow Wing MN
Aitkin MN
Pine MN
Carlton MN
St. Louis MN
Lake MN
Cook MN

Douglas WI
Bayfield WI
Burnett WI
Washburn WI

Some cities included in the watch are:

International Falls MN…Bigfork MN…Togo MN…Grand Rapids MN…Deer River MN…Cass Lake MN…Walker MN…Pine Center MN…Brainerd MN…Aitkin MN…Hill City MN…McGregor MN…Pine City MN…Hinckley MN…Moose Lake MN…Wright MN…Cloquet MN…Duluth MN…Floodwood MN…Hibbing MN…Ely MN…Crane Lake MN…Two Harbors MN…Silver Bay MN…Finland MN…Isabella MN…Grand Marais MN…Hovland MN…Lutsen MN…Tofte MN…Illgen City MN…and Grand Portage MN.

Superior WI…Solon Springs WI…Port Wing WI…Bayfield WI…Cable WI…Siren WI…Danbury WI…Siren WI…Grantsburg WI…Minong WI…Shell Lake WI…and Spooner WI.

Remember a severe thunderstorm watch means conditions are favorable for severe thunderstorms in and close to the watch area.  Persons in these areas should be on the lookout for rapidly changing weather conditions and stay tuned to local media or NOAA weather radio for possible warnings.  Severe thunderstorms can and occasionally do produce tornadoes.


August 31, 2013 – A good chance that parts of the Northland will be in a severe t-storm watch by 4 PM.

/Issued 2:17 PM CDT, Saturday, August 31, 2013/

*80% chance that a severe t-storm watch will be issued within the next 1-2 hours in the outline area on the map.  (Source, NWS Storm Prediction Center)

Scattered thunderstorms are beginning to erupt now in parts of Western and Northern Minnesota (no warnings in effect as of 2:18 PM) Movement of this activity is toward the east. 

Short term model guidance continues to support the idea of scattered strong-severe thunderstorms across much of Minnesota thru the Evening hours.  Damaging winds and large hail will be the primary hazards, but an isolated tornado is also possible, especially over West Central and North Central areas in Minnesota.


August 31, 2013 – Early Afternoon severe thunderstorm update.

/Issued 11:52 AM CDT, Saturday, August 31, 2013/

-Late Morning weather vapor loop.  Note the swirl/twisting motion over Southern Saskatchewan…That’s a potent little disturbance which will continue to track east/southeast thru Tonight and is 1 of the reasons why there should be some thunderstorms in the Northland later Today.  (Source, Unisys weather)

…Severe t-storms possible late This Afternoon/Evening…

Late This Morning a cold front extended from Northern North Dakota to Central South Dakota with low pressure averaging 1003mb over Southern Manitoba.  The combination of this cold front along with a very strong disturbance tracking east-southeast across the Northern Plains and into the Upper Midwest should promote thunderstorm development later Today.

Convection should develop in the Western and Northern parts of Minnesota during the Afternoon, especially after 3 PM.  Storms will then settle east/southeast into Central, Eastern, and Northeast Minnesota This Evening, probably during the 5-7 PM time frame.

The atmosphere will be unstable Today with CAPE of 1000-2500 j/kg.  Lifted Indices of -3 to -8C.  0-6 KM shear and Effective bulk shear is forecast to be in the 30-40 knot range.  Mid level winds out of the west will increase to 30-50 knots while a low level jet from the SW increases to 25-35 knots later Today.  

Initial storms could be in the form of supercells in Western/Northern Minnesota with a risk of large hail and damaging winds.  As the storms progress farther south/east This Evening the chance for supercells should diminish, but damaging winds will still be a possibility especially if a well developed bow echo/cold pool can materialize.  

Be sure to stay weather aware Today.  Know the difference between a watch and warning.  A watch means that conditions are ‘favorable’ for the development of severe thunderstorms.  A warning means that severe thunderstorms are occurring or are imminent.

Know what county you’re in in case a watch or warning is issued later Today.

Remember, all thunderstorms produce lightning.  If you can hear thunder you are close enough to be struck by lightning.  When thunder roars get indoors.

*Storm Prediction Center’s slight risk area (yellow area on the map) covers most of Minnesota and far Western Wisconsin for Today and Tonight.

*Large hail threat for Today/This Evening.  Greatest chances with even a hatched area for a few significant hail events cover West Central and parts of Northwest Minnesota.

*Damaging wind threat for Today/Tonight.

*Tornado threat for late This Afternoon/Evening.  I still don’t think there’s a very good chance for tornadoes Today.  The 1km shear/helicity values aren’t the best, also I’d like to see more of a SSE wind vs. SSW wind for a greater chance for tornadoes.  Either way the situation will have to be monitored, you can never rule out a quick spin-up.


August 30, 2013 – Weather Report; Chance for t-storms returns Saturday PM – stay weather aware!

/Issued 3:42 PM CDT, Friday, August 30, 2013/

*There is a risk for a few strong to severe thunderstorms over much of Western, Central, Northern, and Eastern Minnesota from late Saturday Afternoon into Saturday Evening.  Keep this in mind if you have outdoor plans.  You may need to alternate your plans a bit if threatening weather moves in.  Image below is the calibrated severe thunderstorm forecast for Saturday PM per 15z SREF model.

Weather Tidbits for Duluth, MN (Airport location)

-The high temperature on August 29 failed to reach 80 degrees for the 1st time since August 14.  This means that the consecutive number of days with a high temperature of at least 80F ended at 14 days.  Note:  Missed tying the record for consecutive days at or above 80F by just 1 day.  Oh that mother nature can be cruel sometimes.

Rainfall report for August 29, 2013
Source:  National Weather Service Duluth, MN

Duluth, MN:  0.41″
International Falls, MN:  0.89″
Grand Marais, MN:  1.00″
Hibbing, MN:  1.42″
Hayward, WI:  0.82″
Cass Lake, MN:  1.40″
Togo, MN:  0.88″
Walker, MN:  0.30″
Cook, MN:  1.44″
Duluth, MN:  0.33″  NWS total.
Embarrass, MN:  0.34″
Grand Portage, MN:  1.44″
Kabetogama, MN:  0.82″
3 E of Orr, MN:  0.79″
Silver Bay, MN:  0.85″
2 S of Tower, MN:  0.36″
Finland, MN:  0.25″
Ashland, WI:  1.14″
Gile, WI:  1.51″
Gurney, WI:  1.40″
Park Falls, WI:  0.39″
Upson, WI:  1.05″
4 W of Clam Lake, WI:  0.50″
Gordon, WI:  1.12″
Solon Springs, WI:  0.43″
Winter, WI:  2.29″

Today’s Weather Summary for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

A much calmer weather day across the Northland as Thursday’s system moves off to our east.  In it’s wake, skies were sunny to partly cloudy Today with pleasant late summer temperatures in the 70s and 80s.  Dew points are also lower compared to recent days with 50s and 60s covering the area Today.  Winds were out of the north or east at 10 to 20 mph.

Forecast Discussion for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Short Term Forecast – Confidence:  High.

Tonight (August 30)

Clear to partly cloudy skies are expected with patchy fog possible late.  A few showers are also possible mainly after 3 AM along a Bemidji – International Falls line and points west.  Lows Tonight will be in the 50s and 60s with winds out of the north, east, or south at 5 to 15 mph.

Saturday and Saturday Night (August 31)

Looks like Saturday will be the last real warm day at least for a little while.  Low pressure will be centered NW of our area while a cold front moves east and through the Upper Midwest.  The airmass along and ahead of this front should be characterized with 60 degree dew points along with 1000-2000 j/kg CAPE and Lifted Indices of -2 to -7C.  The combination of the cold front and an upper level disturbance moving into this warm, moist and unstable airmass should give way to scattered showers and thunderstorms in our area especially from late Saturday Afternoon into early Sunday Morning.  Note:  Storms should initiate in the Western/Northern sections and push south/east thereafter.

There is a risk for a few severe thunderstorms especially in North Central and East Central Minnesota late Saturday Afternoon/Evening with strong winds and hail being the primary hazards.  Effective Bulk Shear and 0-6 KM Shear of 30-40 knots combined with 40-60 knot mid level winds will support a severe weather risk over portions of the Northland, but the potential for supercells and tornadoes looks low due to much weaker 1km shear/helicity values, not nearly as impressive as what we had in place 24 hours ago.

Even if severe thunderstorms don’t happen, there’s always a risk of lightning with any thunderstorm, so remember when you hear thunder move indoors.  When thunder roars get indoors!

Expect partly to mostly cloudy skies Tomorrow and Tomorrow Night with highs in the 70s and 80s with lows in the 50s and 60s.  South or southwest winds are forecast at 10 to 25 mph on Saturday with winds turning to the north/west Tomorrow Night at 10 to 20 mph.

*Cold front (blue line on the map) is forecast to stretch from about Redwood Falls in Southwest Minnesota to International Falls in Northern Minnesota at 7 PM Saturday.  A threat for scattered rain/thunderstorms will exist anywhere along and ahead of this cold front.  (Source, Weather Prediction Center)

Extended Forecast – Confidence:  High.

Sunday through Tuesday (September 1-3)

Looking a little brisk on Sunday with low pressure to our NE and high pressure to our NW.  Northerly flow between these features will drag a cooler airmass into the region with highs on Sunday only in the 50s and 60s with a few 70s in East Central Minnesota and Northern Wisconsin.  Lows Sunday Night will be in the 40s and 50s with 30s in the typical cold spots where patchy frost is possible Labor Day Morning.  Early next week looks dry at this time with highs on Monday in the 60s and 70s with lows Monday Night in the 40s and 50s.  Highs on Tuesday will be mainly in the 70s.

Long Range Forecast – Confidence:  High.

(September 4-9)

Quite a cold shot coming to Central, Northern, and Eastern Canada the middle of next week…Right now it looks like the Northland will only get a glancing blow with this next shot of cool air with the coldest temps expected to stay well to our N/NE next Wednesday-Thursday (4th-5th)  Warmer temperatures are possible from the 5th-9th along with a chance for a few showers or thunderstorms, especially from the 7th-9th.  Near to below average temperatures from the 4th-5th.  Near to above average temperatures from the 6th-9th.


.Tonight…  Mostly clear.  Patchy fog possible late.  Low 55 to 60.  Wind east at 5 to 15 mph.

.Saturday…  Mild.  Partly to mostly sunny.  High 81 to 86.  Wind southwest at 10 to 20 mph.

.Saturday Night…  Scattered showers or thunderstorms, mainly before Midnight.  Mostly cloudy.  Low 55 to 60.  Wind south to southwest at 5 to 15 mph, becoming northwest at 10 to 20 mph Overnight.

.Sunday…  Cooler.  Partly sunny.  High 67 to 72.

.Sunday Night…  Mostly clear.  Low 45 to 50.

.Labor Day…  Mostly sunny.  High 65 to 70.

.Monday Night…  Mostly clear.  Low 42 to 47.

.Tuesday…  Partly cloudy.  High 70 to 75.

Normal temperatures for Today

High:  71
Low:  52

Sunrise Saturday:  6:27 AM CDT
Sunset Saturday:   7:50 PM CDT


August 30, 2013 – A stormy Thursday in parts of the Northland – Storm reports included in this post.

/Issued 1:04 PM CDT, Friday, August 30, 2013/

*Enhanced satellite loop from Wednesday Night (10pm) ending around 10am Thursday Morning.  Basically looks like a ball rolling east out of Eastern Montana and North Dakota, this was the system responsible in producing the scary looking clouds (SLC’s) over the Twin Ports early Thursday Afternoon.  This thunderstorm complex produced gusty winds over much of Northern Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin with severe wind gusts over Western Lake Superior.  (Source, Unisys weather)

*Local Storm Report for August 29, 2013*
Source:  National Weather Service Duluth, Minnesota

-11:30 AM CDT:  0.50″ HAIL.  Pengilly, MN (Itasca County)

-11:30 AM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND DAMAGE.  Pengilly, MN (Itasca County)  One 4″ tree down on Highway 65.  Also one 12″ tree down.

-1:00 PM CDT:  0.75″ HAIL.  East Duluth, MN (St. Louis County)  40-50 mph winds as well.

-1:20 PM CDT:  MARINE THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  68 mph.  6 S of Castle Danger, MN.  Ship Algoma progress reported wind gusts to 60 knots for approximately 3 minutes.  Measured at 90 feet above water level.

-1:35 PM CDT:  MARINE THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  51 mph.  5 SE of French River, MN.  Research vessel Kaiyi reported 45 knot wind gust.

-2:18 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  40 mph.  Odanah, WI (Ashland County)

-1:40 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  52 mph.  Port Wing, WI (Bayfield County)

-10:36 AM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  43 mph.  International Falls, MN (Koochiching County)

-11:42 AM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  40 mph.  5 E of Hibbing, MN (St. Louis County)

-12:07 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  49 mph.  5 E of Hibbing, MN (St. Louis County)

-1:00 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  40 mph.  French River, MN (St. Louis County)

-1:03 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  48 mph.  1 N of Knife River, MN (Lake County)

-2:27 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND GUST.  40 mph.  3 SE of Bayfield, WI (Ashland County)

*Local Storm Reports from the 2nd round of thunderstorms on August 29, 2013*

-6:06 PM CDT:  1.00″ HAIL.  1 N of Boy Lake, MN (Cass County)

-6:33 PM CDT:  TORNADO.  2 E of Remer, MN (Cass County)  Spotter reported a broad/weak tornado.

-6:38 PM CDT:  TORNADO.  7 NW of Swatara, MN (Aitkin County)  Tornado was just north of Highway 200.

-6:43 PM CDT:  0.50″ HAIL.  1 SW of Hayward, WI (Sawyer County)

-7:07 PM CDT:  0.75″ HAIL.  Earl, WI (Washburn County)  Pea to dime sized hail.

-7:12 PM CDT:  1.00″ HAIL.  3 S of Hill City, MN (Aitkin County)

-7:03 PM CDT:  1.75″ HAIL.  2 NW of Hill City, MN (Aitkin County)

-7:10 PM CDT:  1.75″ HAIL.  3 N of Hill City, MN (Aitkin County)

-7:50 PM CDT:  0.25″ HAIL.  2 SE of Winter, WI (Sawyer County)

-7:59 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND DAMAGE.  Big Sandy Lake, MN (Aitkin County)  Several trees down.

-8:08 PM CDT:  0.25″ HAIL.  2 SW of Sheshebee, MN (Aitkin County)

-8:45 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND DAMAGE.  1 S of Rice Lake, MN (Aitkin County)  Several pine trees down.  Dime sized hail also reported.

-9:10 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND DAMAGE.  Rice Lake, MN (Aitkin County)  Several trees uprooted.

-9:15 PM CDT:  0.25″ HAIL.  8 S of Prentice, WI (Price County)

-8:30 PM CDT:  THUNDERSTORM WIND DAMAGE.  4 NNW of Kimberly, MN (Aitkin County)  Numerous large trees uprooted and debris on Highway 210.

*Radar grab of the tornado Thursday Evening in Northwestern Aitkin County Minnesota.  (Source, NWS Duluth, MN)

Note:  The National Weather Service is doing damage surveys Today in the outlined areas on the map.  More details about Thursday’s tornado/wind damage should be released later Today or This Evening.  Stay tuned.