…Update on a potential winter storm this weekend…
•Low pressure is forecast to be located over western portions of Kansas Saturday morning. This low is then forecast to move northeast through Sunday, following one of the two black lines on map below, or in between the black lines.
•There is still some uncertainty on the storm track and the strength of the surface low.
•I do have some concerns on how far north the snow will get, especially if the surface low takes a more southerly track, which is what the Euro and to some extent GEFS models are showing. Often times especially at this time of the year will see the snow lift north until it gets closer to Lake Superior, and then the snow will suddenly stop moving any farther north, we could see that sort of thing play out this weekend, but does the snow make it into Duluth and South Shore areas before this happens? Computer models often struggle with that sort of thing until a day or two before a storm is suppose to hit, so for now it’s all about watching model trends.
•For now the best chance for 6 inch or greater snowfall amounts appears to be roughly along and south of a line from Brainerd to Duluth to Ashland with a lesser chance for 6″+ snowfall totals north of that line. Note: Changes to my forecast map are quite likely during the next few days. Stay tuned.
•I don’t think will have to worry about any mixed precipitation with this storm for our area unless the storm takes a more northerly track which is what the GFS model has been showing, but that track looks wack to me.
•As for the timing: If this storm hits Duluth, it still looks like it would begin sometime late Saturday afternoon or Saturday evening, ending sometime Sunday afternoon.
What an impressive stretch of cold weather to open the month of March — Check out how widespread the below normal temperatures have been so far this month, and it’s been well below normal, with the average temperatures thru March 4 running some 15 to nearly 40 degrees below normal from the northern Rockies and northern Plains to the upper Midwest to the central and southern Plains. Note: The only warm spots so far this month have been in the southeast and southwest portions of the U.S.
Average temperature and their departure from normal from March 1-4, 2019
•Hibbing, Minn: -6.4 degrees (-24.6 degrees below normal) Record coldest March 1-4 was in 2014, average temp -9.9 degrees.
•International Falls, Minn: -5.0 degrees (-22.0 degrees below normal) Record coldest March 1-4 was in 2014, average temp -10.9 degrees.
•Brainerd, Minn: -3.2 degrees (-26.2 degrees below normal) Record coldest March 1-4 was in 1919, average temp -5.0 degrees.
•Ashland, WI: 0.5 degrees (-22.3 degrees below normal) Record coldest March 1-4 was in 2014, average temp -2.6 degrees.
•Duluth, Minn: 0.8 degrees (-19.8 degrees below normal) Record coldest March 1-4 was in 2014, average temp -5.6 degrees.
…Climate Data for March 4, 2019…
A new record low temperature was set for March 4 with a low on Monday of -19 degrees. The previous record was -18 degrees set in 1875.
5th lowest maximum temperature on record for March 4 with a high on Monday of 8 degrees. The record cold high for March 4 is 3 degrees set in 2015.
A new record low temperature was set for March 4 with a low on Monday of -28 degrees. The previous record was -18 degrees set in 2014.
2nd lowest maximum temperature on record for March 4 with a high on Monday of 7 degrees. The record cold high for March 4 is 3 degrees set in 2015.
A new record low temperature was set for March 4 with a low on Monday of -24 degrees. The previous record was -16 degrees set in 2015 and 1975.
3rd lowest maximum temperature on record for March 4 with a high on Monday of 10 degrees. The record cold high for March 4 is 3 degrees set in 2015.
2nd lowest maximum temperature on record for March 4 with a high on Monday of 8 degrees. The record cold high for March 4 is 7 degrees set in 2015.
3rd lowest minimum temperature on record for March 4 with a low on Monday of -17 degrees. The record low for March 4 is -24 degrees set in 1913.
Weather Synopsis for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin
Another very cold day with brisk west winds of 10 to 20 mph, gusting to around 30 mph. Highs today were in the low to mid teens (nearly 20 degrees below normal for 3/5) The day started with some clouds and light snow showers, but sunshine was a little more abundant from mid to late afternoon.
RAP model analysis from 5 PM Tuesday placed the upper Midwest in northwest flow aloft with arctic air lingering over the area with 850mb temperatures of -22 to -24C. 500mb heights have come up a bit compared to Monday afternoon, ranging from 516-528 decamaters from NE-SW across the Northland, so the airmass is slowly modifying, key word slowly!
Tonight: Well if you guessed it was going to be another frigid night you’d be right! Looking at clear to partly cloudy skies for tonight with lows in the single digits, teens and 20s below zero. West or southwest winds 5 to 15 mph, gusts to 25 mph this evening.
Wednesday: Partly to mostly sunny with highs in the teens to around 20 degrees, still well below normal for early March. Winds out of the northwest, gusting 15 to 25 mph.
Temperatures will warm up a bit later this week as our airmass modifies. 850mb temperatures going from around -20C Wednesday afternoon to -10 to -15C Thursday afternoon, and -5 to -10C Friday afternoon. Looking at daytime highs in the 20s Thursday, and on Friday some spots could max out at around 30-32 degrees which is right around ‘average’ for early March.
Forecast for Duluth and Superior
.Tonight… Breezy. Clear to partly cloudy. Very cold. Low 2 below to 7 below. Wind west to southwest at 5 to 15 mph, gusts to around 25 mph this evening.
.Wednesday… Chilly and breezy. Partly cloudy. High 15 to 20. Wind northwest 10 to 20 mph.
Normal temperatures for March 6
Sunrise Wednesday: 6:39 AM CST
Sunset Wednesday: 6:01 PM CST