Above normal temperatures continue this week; some wet snow/mixed precip possible Thursday

-Temperatures will be cooler on Monday compared to what we saw on Sunday, but the forecast highs for Monday are still above normal for late December (highs in the 20s to lower 30s)

-Record high temperature for December 22nd broken today at International Falls, Minnesota. High temperature of 47 degrees today, this is a new record high for December 22nd. The previous record high was 42 degrees set in 1954.

-The high of 47 degrees in International Falls today (December 22nd, 2019) is the 5th warmest temperature on record for the month of December. The record highest maximum temperature for December in International Falls is 56 degrees set in 1962.

-Hibbing, Minnesota tied their record high for December 22nd with a high today of 41 degrees, this record was set in 1991 and tied in 1994 and 2019.

-High of 39 degrees at Duluth, Minnesota today, December 22nd, warmest temperature in Duluth since November 24th when the temperature got up to 47 degrees.

-Ashland, Wisconsin had its 4th highest maximum temperature on record for December 21st with a high on Saturday of 41 degrees. And today, December 22nd, Ashland had its 2nd highest maximum temperature on record with a high of 45 degrees, missed the record high for December 22nd by just one degree today.


An incredibly warm airmass covered the upper Midwest and western Great Lakes today with 850mb temperatures (~5000 feet) at late spring/early summer like levels, ranging from around +10 to +15C! When you get this much warm air aloft at this time of year you often end up with strong inversions since temperatures near the surface (where we live) are much cooler, this was the case today with temps in the 30s and 40s, while higher up in the atmosphere, temps were in the 60s and 70s today!

Source: https://www.spc.noaa.gov/

Source: RTMA model; https://lab.weathermodels.com/

Late December thaw continues this week with widespread above normal temperatures expected to continue through at least Saturday, December 28.

Source: 12z European ensemble model 12.22.19; https://weathermodels.com/

I’m keeping an eye on snow chances for after Christmas. Doesn’t look like a major storm, but there could be enough snow to cause some travel issues in parts of the Northland on Thursday, there is also a risk for some mixed precipitation as well.

Source: 12z European ensemble model 12.22.19

Low temperature forecast for Monday morning, December 23, 2019. Source: https://graphical.weather.gov/

High temperature forecast for Monday, December 23, 2019.


Temperature and Precipitation report for Duluth, Minnesota for the week of December 15th, 2019.

High Temperatures/Departure from Normal

12/15: 8F/-14 degrees below normal
12/16: 18F/-4 degrees below normal
12/17: 19F/-3 degrees below normal
12/18: 3F/-18 degrees below normal
12/19: 22F/+1 degree above normal
12/20: 29F/+8 degrees above normal
12/21: 32F/+11 degrees above normal

Low Temperatures/Departure from Normal

12/15: -16F/-23 degrees below normal
12/16: 7F/Normal
12/17: -11F/-18 degrees below normal
12/18: -15F/-21 degrees below normal
12/19: 1F/-5 degrees below normal
12/20: 18F/+12 degrees above normal
12/21: 18F/+13 degrees above normal

Note: Average temperature for December 15-21, 2019: 9.5 degrees; -4.2 degrees below normal. Source: https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/

Total Precipitation: 0.01″
Normal: 0.26″
Departure: -0.25″ below normal

State Average for Minnesota for the week of December 15th, 2019.

Temperature: 10.2 degrees
Departure: -4.7 degrees below normal
Precipitation: 0.01″
Departure: -0.20″ below normal

Average temperature, departure from mean from December 15-21, 2019. Source: https://mrcc.illinois.edu/

Total precipitation, departure from mean from December 15-21, 2019.

…Weather Summary…

A cold front will move SE through the Northland tonight, this will be followed by high pressure which passes north of Lake Superior through midweek.

No precipitation is expected as the cold front moves through tonight, but winds will shift to the east later Monday, and east winds are then expected to continue through Christmas Day. The easterly flow coming off Lake Superior may cause a little light lake effect flurries or freezing drizzle at times along the North Shore from Monday night into Wednesday, but this shouldn’t be a big deal. Otherwise it looks mainly dry across the Northland through Christmas Day.

Partly to mostly cloudy skies tonight and Monday with a trend toward cloudier skies for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Lows tonight will range from the single digits to the 20s with highs Monday in the 20s to lower 30s.

Highs for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are forecast to be in the upper 20s to low-mid 30s.

The only real good chance for some wintry weather in the week ahead comes on Thursday, but computer models are showing the typical differences on the track, strength of the system, and what type of precipitation will see. Canadian and GFS models are warmer keeping most of the snow across northern Minnesota with rain/snow farther south/east including here in Duluth, while the European model is cooler, showing the main snow band setting up a little farther southeast, mainly south/east of the Iron Range. None of the models show a huge amount of snow on Thursday, perhaps a swath of around 1 to 3 inches where the main snow band sets up. Stay tuned.


Forecast for Duluth and Superior

.Tonight… Partly to mostly cloudy. Low 20 to 25. Wind southwest 10 to 15 mph.

.Monday… Partly to mostly cloudy. High 29 to 34. Wind north 10 to 15 mph becoming east later in the day.

.Christmas Eve… Mostly cloudy. High 28 to 33. Wind east 10 to 15 mph.

Normal temperatures for December 23

High: 20
Low: 5

Sunrise Monday 7:52 AM CST
Sunset Monday 4:24 PM CST

Thanks for reading!


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