Warm weekend ahead, record/near record warmth possible Sunday – highs 40s to around 50 degrees! Turning cooler next week (closer to normal)

No snow or arctic air to talk about so might as well talk about the spring tease coming to the Northland this weekend with Sunday being the warmest day of the weekend, this is when we should see widespread 40 to 45 degree temperatures in northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin, there’s even a chance that some locations make a good run at 50 degrees Sunday afternoon.

The map below shows the forecast temperature anomalies for Sunday, February 2nd, 2020, yes it will be well above normal!

Source 12z European model 1.30.20; https://weathermodels.com/

*Record High Temperatures for February 2nd*

International Falls: 55F set in 1991
Ashland: 50F set in 1991
Hibbing: 50F set in 1991
Brainerd: 49F set in 1991
Duluth: 47F set in 1991

Note: The record high temperature for February 2nd at International Falls is likely safe on Sunday, but the other records listed above could be tied or broken, especially the records for Brainerd and Duluth.

Some parts of the Northland saw some sun this afternoon, it wasn’t a lot of sun, but at this point will take what we can get considering how cloudy/gray its been lately.

Source Goes-16 visible satellite loop 1.30.20; https://weather.cod.edu/

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Ice coverage on the Great Lakes is running well below average for late January with just 6.6% of the Great Lakes ice covered as of January 29th, 2020, average for late January is 28%.

Note: The record low ice coverage for late January was set in 2002 with 3.3% ice coverage.

Source https://coastwatch.glerl.noaa.gov/

Meanwhile on Lake Superior, only 1.4% ice covered as of January 30th, 2020. Note: Average for late January is right around 20%.

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

Temperatures trend cooler for next week with perhaps one night with zero or subzero temps in parts of the Northland, but overall temperatures for next week remain above normal, cooler yes, but really just closer to where we should be in early February.

Source 12z European ensemble model 1.30.20; https://weathermodels.com/

Low temperature forecast for Friday morning, January 31st, 2020. Source https://graphical.weather.gov/

High temperature forecast for Friday, January 31st, 2020.

…Weather Summary…

Mostly cloudy skies tonight with patchy fog and light freezing mist possible. Some snow showers are also possible tonight especially across eastern Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin with a light dusting of accumulation. Lows tonight will be in the teens to around 20 degrees with southerly winds around 10 mph.

Mostly cloudy to partly sunny skies on Friday. Morning flurries/snow showers and possibly some patchy fog and freezing mist. Highs in the upper 20s to lower 30s with south to southwest winds 10 to 15 mph.

Two warm fronts move across the area this weekend, one Friday night, the other Saturday night. Not expecting any precipitation with either front.

Will be in the warm sector of a system on Sunday with strong low pressure to our north, warm front to the east and a cold front to the northwest, this cold front will move through the Northland on Sunday, but before it does we should warm into the 40s over most of the area, with even a chance at hitting 50 degrees! 850mb winds will be on the strong side on Sunday with west winds 40-50 knots, some of this should mix down to the surface resulting in wind gusts around 20 to 25 mph, maybe up to 30 mph on Sunday.

Things that could prevent us from getting well into the 40s/near 50 degrees on Sunday include the deep snow pack which ranges from 1 to 3 feet across the area, but we are getting closer to spring, and the sun is getting stronger, days are a little longer now as well, so if we get enough sun, I think temps will warm well into the 40s on Sunday despite the deep snow pack. Extensive cloudiness could also put the kibosh on 45 to 50 degree temps. But as of now I’m all in on temperatures taking off Sunday afternoon given the setup that is forecast to be in place.

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Forecast for Duluth and Superior

.Tonight… Mostly cloudy. Patchy fog and haze. Light freezing mist or flurries also possible. Low 15 to 20. Wind south to southeast around 10 mph.

.Friday… Mostly cloudy (some peeks of sun possible) Patchy fog, freezing mist or flurries in the morning. Haze. High 28 to 33. Wind east around 10 mph, becoming southwest.

.Saturday… Partly to mostly cloudy. High 32 to 37. Wind southwest 10 to 20 mph.

Normal temperatures for January 31st

High 20
Low 2

Sunrise Friday 7:35 AM CST
Sunset Friday 5:10 PM CST

Thanks for reading!

Tim

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