/Issued 5:31 PM CST, Saturday, December 16, 2017/
I’ll be keeping a real close eye on the model trends over the next several days to see if there is any moderation in temperatures for the December 23-25 time frame. Right now next weekend looks frigid! Computer models have been showing a pattern that would be favorable for bitter cold temperatures over the Northland for Christmas weekend, since we’re still a week away from this, things could change just a bit, but so far there hasn’t been much change in the long range computer models pertaining to next weekend’s pattern/bitter cold setup. Stay tuned
Snow is possible next Wednesday and Thursday. Still some uncertainty on the track and strength of the surface low, but based on latest model projections, the area in blue has the greatest chance for around 3 inches or more of snow next Wednesday-Thursday. Stay tuned
22z HRRR model visibility forecast valid at 8 AM Sunday
Quite a contrast in temperatures this Saturday afternoon ranging from ~10 degrees in far northern Minnesota to the lower 40s in southwest Minnesota!
December 1-15, 2017 Temperature Departure Map
Note: I have a feeling this map will look quite a bit different by December 31 as a more persistent pattern featuring frigid temperatures sets up by next weekend, and probably through the rest of the month.
Precipitation Departure Map for December 1-15, 2017
December 1-15, 2017 Climate Stats for Duluth, Minnesota
Average Temperature: 18.2 degrees
Departure: +1.0℉ above normal
1 subzero night
Total Precipitation: 0.49 inches
Departure: -0.13 inches below normal
Total Snowfall: 7.0 inches
Departure: -1.1 inches below normal
Number of days with snowfall (0.1″ or greater accumulation) 8
Number of days with snowfall (1.0″ or greater accumulation) 2
A strong baroclinic zone is in place across the area today with afternoon 850mb temperatures ranging from -20C in northeast Ontario Province to -10C in northeast Minnesota to +2C in far southern Minnesota. Temperatures ranged from ~0 in eastern Ontario Province to the lower 50s in eastern Nebraska. With this temperature contrast in place, some snow has been occurring at times in parts of the Northland but snowfall amounts haven’t been very heavy, generally ranging from a dusting to 2 inches. Mostly cloudy skies covered the Northland today with highs in the teens along and north of Highway 2 in northeast Minnesota to the 20s south of Highway 2 including all of northwest Wisconsin.
Tonight: Mostly cloudy skies with possible flurries and maybe some patchy freezing drizzle. Snow showers will continue especially this evening along the North Shore of Lake Superior due to an east wind coming off the lake with up to 2 inches of snow possible. Lows tonight will be in the teens and 20s.
Sunday: High pressure will cover the upper Midwest while a warm front lifts north into Ontario Province. Highs will be in the mid 20s to low 30s (Around 5-8 degrees above average for mid December) Looking at mostly cloudy skies once again to end the weekend, although some sunny breaks are possible.
Monday: Strong area of low pressure ~982mb will pass well north of our area while a warm front and cold front attached to this low pass through the Northland — There could be some snow on Monday over parts of the Northland with accumulations of a half inch to one inch possible especially north of Highway 2 in northeast Minnesota. Highs Monday will range from the mid 20s to low 30s.
Forecast for Duluth and Superior
.Tonight… Mostly cloudy. Patchy freezing drizzle or flurries possible. Low 18 to 23. Wind east at 10 to 20 mph becoming southwest late.
.Sunday… Considerable cloudiness (Few sunny breaks possible) Milder. High 27 to 32. Wind southwest at 10 to 20 mph.
.Monday… Mostly cloudy. Snow showers or flurries possible. High 30 to 35. Wind southwest at 10 to 20 mph.
Normal temperatures for Sunday
Sunrise Sunday: 7:49 AM CST
Sunset Sunday: 4:21 PM CST