/Issued 6:20 PM CST, Wednesday, January 17, 2018/
12z Euro Ensemble model from 1.17.2018.
Computer models typically struggle trying to figure out the track of a storm that is several days away and when the system is still over the Pacific Ocean, that’s one of the reasons why you’ll see changes in a storm track sometimes every 6 hours (each new model run) Once this system moves onto land which it should do by Friday, then we should start to see the computer models come into agreement on a storm track, but with that said, the computer models with this particular system haven’t been that far apart from each other when it comes to the storm track.
Anywhere inside that black outlined area has a potential for a half foot or more of snow between Sunday-Tuesday per the 12z Euro Ensemble model from Wednesday, January 17, 2018.
12z GEFS model from January 17, 2018 — This is a 20 ensemble member GEFS forecast showing potential snowfall amounts for the storm late this weekend, ending Tuesday morning, January 23. Note: I put an X on the ensemble members that show little or no snow for Duluth, there are 6 out of 20 ensemble members that are a miss (~30% of them) While 14/20 members have at least some snow hitting Duluth (~70% of them) between Sunday-Tuesday, January 21-23.
21z RAP model vorticity forecast through Noon Thursday — I know all of the attention is focused with what may happen later this weekend, but tonight there is a very strong vort max that will dive southeast through the Northland overnight, exiting off to our E/SE by early Thursday afternoon. There isn’t a whole lot of moisture for this feature to work with, but should be enough to produce a little bit of snow or freezing drizzle late tonight through Thursday morning in parts of the Northland.
A real nice mid January day around here with mostly sunny skies, breezy southwest winds with above average high temperatures in the mid 20s to around 30 degrees with even a few locations getting into the middle 30s!
Tonight: Partly to mostly cloudy skies. Some snow or mixed precipitation possible overnight in parts of the area. Lows will be in the teens and 20s.
Thursday: Some snow or mixed precipitation is possible over portions of the area early in the day, otherwise mild temperatures, partly to mostly cloudy skies with gusty winds. Highs will be in the 20s and 30s with westerly winds gusting 20 to 30 mph.
Note: Warm temperatures continue Friday with highs in the 30s with even a few locations reaching 40 degrees! Record or near record warmth is possible Friday in parts of the Northland. See record highs list below — Out of the locations listed below, International Falls and Hibbing have the greatest potential for tying or setting a new record high temperature on Friday.
Duluth: 45 degrees set in 2017
International Falls: 40 degrees set in 2017 and 1908
Hibbing: 37 degrees set in 1942
The Northland will remain in the warm sector through Friday afternoon as multiple lows pass by to our north — A cold front will finally pass through our area Friday afternoon but there won’t be a whole lot of cooling behind that front, so temperatures Saturday should also be on the mild side with readings near or above freezing once again for southern areas with 20s for northern Minnesota.
After Saturday is when we could be impacted by a major winter storm! For being 4 days away, computer models have come into very good agreement on the track of this system, although timing of it differs just a bit with the 12z EURO and Canadian models slower to lift the low into the upper Midwest, while the 12z GFS model is quicker. This storm has the potential to produce heavy amounts of snow over parts of northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin, in addition to the snow will be strong northeast winds with gusts 25-30 mph or stronger possible from Sunday afternoon into Monday. Stay tuned!
Forecast for Duluth and Superior
.Tonight… Partly to mostly cloudy. Low 19 to 24. Wind southwest at 10 to 20 mph.
.Thursday… Snow showers possible early. Breezy. Partly to mostly cloudy. High 30 to 35. Wind west to southwest at 15 to 25 mph.
.Friday… Partly to mostly cloudy. High 37 to 42. Wind southwest at 10 to 20 mph.
Normal temperatures for Thursday
Sunrise Thursday: 7:47 AM CST
Sunset Thursday: 4:51 PM CST