Temperatures in the single digits and teens tonight; 50s Friday, 60s Saturday

Will remain on the cold side of our temperature roller coaster tonight, but things will change starting on Thursday, but more so by Friday and Saturday as much warmer temperatures return to the Northland.

  • Lows in the single digits and teens are likely once again in the Northland tonight (similar to last night)
  • Highs get back to normal on Thursday with highs in the mid 30s to mid 40s.
  • After Thursday it looks like temperatures will generally be above normal in Duluth through next week, although lake breezes are likely at times which will keep temps a lot cooler for lakeside locations.

…Low Temperature Reports from Wednesday morning, March 31, 2021…

Source: https://www.weather.gov/dlh/

  • Margie, MN: 6 F
  • Northome, MN: 7 F
  • Isabella, MN: 8 F
  • Littlefork, MN: 8 F
  • Effie, MN: 9 F
  • Grand Marais Airport: 9 F
  • Cook, MN: 9 F
  • Bigfork, MN: 9 F
  • Chisholm-Hibbing Airport: 9 F
  • International Falls, MN: 9 F
  • Crane Lake, MN: 10 F
  • Ely, MN: 10 F
  • Hermantown, MN: 11 F
  • Grand Rapids, MN: 11 F
  • Saginaw, MN: 12 F
  • Walker, MN: 12 F
  • Hill City, MN: 12 F
  • Cloquet, MN: 12 F
  • Duluth Airport: 12 F
  • Two Harbors, MN: 12 F
  • Breezy Point, MN: 13 F
  • Esko, MN: 14 F
  • Washburn, WI: 14 F
  • Barnes, WI: 15 F
  • South Range, WI: 15 F
  • Glidden, WI: 15 F
  • Superior Airport: 15 F
  • Duluth Harbor: 16 F
  • Solon Springs, WI: 16 F
  • Minong, WI: 16 F
  • Bayfield, WI: 17 F
  • Ashland, WI: 17 F
  • Siren, WI: 18 F

It’s a dry pattern across the Northland through this weekend, but a wetter pattern could return for next week.

…Fire Weather…

Critical (red) and Elevated (orange) fire weather conditions are expected across much of the Northern Plains and spilling into western Minnesota for Thursday.

Flooding risks in parts of Maine, accumulating snow in parts of New York, frost/freeze concerns for parts of the Midwest and Southeast U.S., to dangerous fire weather conditions across the Northern Plains.


Past April snowfall totals at Duluth, MN, and a look ahead to April 2021

Days continue to get longer and temperatures continue their upward climb during the month of April, but it can still get cold, and it can still snow in the Northland in April.

Climate Normals and Records at Duluth, Minnesota for April

Normal high on the 1st: 41 degrees
Normal high on the 30th: 57 degrees

Normal low on the 1st: 24 degrees
Normal low on the 30th: 36 degrees

Average temperature: 39.6 degrees
Highest: 46.1 degrees set in 1987
Lowest: 28.7 degrees set in 1950

Normal precipitation: 2.43″
Wettest: 8.18″ set in 2001
Driest: 0.24″ set in 1987

Normal snowfall: 6.9″
Snowiest: 50.8″ set in 2013
Driest: 0.0″ set in 1976

Averages for the month

Days with snowfall of at least 0.1″: 4
Days with snowfall of at least 1.0″ 2
Days with a high temp of at least 60 degrees: 5
Days with a high temp of at least 70 degrees: 1

Note: On average the first 70 degree or warmer temperature in Duluth occurs on April 28th.

Astronomical Data for Duluth, Minnesota for April 2021

Sunrise on the 1st: 6:47 AM CDT
Sunrise on the 30th: 5:54 AM CDT

Sunset on the 1st: 7:38 PM CDT
Sunset on the 30th: 8:17 PM CDT

Past April Snowfall Totals at Duluth, Minnesota (2000-2020)

Note: Normal Snowfall in April is 6.9″

  • 2000: 5.6″
  • 2001: 7.7″
  • 2002: 11.6″
  • 2003: 12.9″
  • 2004: 0.3″
  • 2005: 0.5″
  • 2006: Trace
  • 2007: 12.7″
  • 2008: 14.6″
  • 2009: 1.2″
  • 2010: Trace
  • 2011: 10.6″
  • 2012: 0.6″
  • 2013: 50.8″ (snowiest April on record)
  • 2014: 26.3″ (3rd snowiest April on record)
  • 2015: 1.2″
  • 2016: 9.8″
  • 2017: 1.9″
  • 2018: 18.5″ (8th snowiest April on record)
  • 2019: 6.5″
  • 2020: 2.7″

Thunderstorms can occur in Minnesota and Wisconsin during the month of April, but severe thunderstorms aren’t very common this far north in April.

On average, Minnesota sees 1 tornado in April, while Wisconsin sees 2 tornadoes.


Long Range Forecast for April 2021

CFS model is forecasting above normal temperatures for all of northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin.

CFS model is forecasting below normal precipitation in most of northeast Minnesota and all of northwest Wisconsin for April 2021, with near normal precipitation expected across northern Minnesota.


Windy! Turning much colder Tuesday and Wednesday; a few flurries/snow showers possible Tuesday

  • Highs on Tuesday will be about 30 to as much as 40 degrees colder compared to the highs we saw in the Northland on Monday. Temperatures Tuesday afternoon are forecast to range from the lower 20s to middle 30s across the Northland, and with such a strong push of cold air advection, we will have strong gusty winds through Tuesday evening, with WSW winds tonight at 15 to 25 mph, and WNW winds on Tuesday. Note: Wind gusts of 30 to 45 mph are possible through Tuesday afternoon.
  • Chilly temps will continue on Wednesday too with highs in the 20s to lower 30s.
  • Warmer weather returns late this week into the Easter holiday weekend with a shot at 50 and 60 degree temps in most of the Northland.

How’s this for some weather extremes! Several inches of wet heavy snow along with some light ice accumulations on Saturday, March 27th, to highs in the 60s and even a few 70s in the Northland on Monday, March 29th. Now the cold air returns for a few days, and along with the colder temps will come the chance for a few flurries and snow showers on Tuesday, but we’re not looking at any accumulations of snow.

…High Temperature Reports from Monday, March 29th, 2021…

Source: https://www.weather.gov/dlh/

  • Brainerd, MN: 76 F
  • Pine River, MN: 73 F
  • Longville, MN: 70 F
  • Hinckley, MN: 70 F
  • McGregor, MN: 70 F
  • Walker, MN: 70 F
  • Moose Lake, MN: 68 F
  • Grand Rapids, MN: 67 F
  • Superior Airport: 66 F
  • Duluth Harbor: 66 F
  • Solon Springs, WI: 64 F
  • Ashland, WI: 64 F
  • Hayward, WI: 64 F
  • Cloquet, MN: 64 F
  • International Falls, MN: 63 F
  • Hibbing, MN: 62 F
  • Duluth Airport: 61 F

Note: High of 76 degrees at Brainerd today, March 29th, 2021, this is the first 70 degree or warmer temperature this year in Brainerd. Average date for first 70 degree temp in Brainerd is April 18th. The earliest first 70 degree or warmer temp on record in Brainerd was on March 7th (1987) A record high temperature was also set at Brainerd for today, March 29th with a high of 76 degrees, this breaks the old record high for March 29th of 72 degrees which was set in 2005.

Note: First 60 degree temp this year in Duluth today, March 29th with a high of 61 degrees. The average date for first 60 degree or warmer temp in Duluth is April 12th.


Strong, warm southerly winds across the Northland today.

…Wind Reports from Monday, March 29th, 2021…

Source: https://www.weather.gov/dlh/

  • Brainerd, MN: 46 mph
  • Hayward, WI: 45 mph
  • Pine River, MN: 40 mph
  • Ashland, WI: 39 mph
  • Bigfork, MN: 39 mph
  • Grand Rapids, MN: 38 mph
  • Chisholm-Hibbing Airport: 38 mph
  • International Falls, MN: 38 mph
  • Solon Springs, WI: 37 mph
  • Ely, MN: 36 mph
  • Danbury, WI: 36 mph
  • Hinckley, MN: 36 mph
  • Cook, MN: 36 mph
  • Walker, MN: 36 mph
  • Cotton, MN: 36 mph
  • Minong, WI: 36 mph
  • Hill City, MN: 35 mph
  • McGregor, MN: 35 mph
  • Duluth Airport: 32 mph

We’ve got snow showers and flurries in the forecast on Tuesday as much colder air moves into the Northland.

18z HRRR model simulated radar forecast valid from 7 AM to 7 PM Tuesday.

Snow in blue on the animation below.

Check out these temperatures from earlier Monday afternoon.

Look at those 80s in southwest Minnesota, crazy stuff for late March!

Temperatures across Minnesota this afternoon were running 15 to 25 degrees above normal in northeast Minnesota, to as much as 30 to 35 degrees above normal in western and southwestern Minnesota.

Extremely critical fire weather conditions and widespread wind headlines highlighted the weather for today, Monday, March 29th, 2021.

Red Flag Warning – Pink

High Wind Warning and Advisory – Orange/Brown colors


…Snowfall Reports from Saturday, March 27th, 2021…

Source: https://www.weather.gov/dlh/

  • 3 ESE Orr, MN: 5.5″
  • Mckinley, MN: 5.0″
  • Keewatin, MN: 5.0″
  • Bigfork, MN: 5.0″
  • Gile, WI: 4.8″
  • 1 SSW Ely, MN: 3.8″
  • Kelly Lake, MN: 3.3″
  • 1 SSE Oulu, WI: 3.1″
  • Blueberry, WI: 3.0″
  • Virginia, MN: 3.0″
  • Silver Bay, MN: 2.2″
  • 4 WSW Grand Marais, MN: 2.0″
  • International Falls, MN: 1.6″
  • Duluth Airport: 1.5″


A variety of weather ahead from snow (rain/mix) to highs in the 60s to lows in the single digits and teens

The weather pattern has certainly changed over the last few weeks from one that’s been very boring around here for a long, long time, to one that features quick changes/more variety, and this is what people who are interested in weather like to see.

Wet snow, rain and a wintry mix of precipitation is likely across northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin tonight and Saturday. This precipitation will begin in western portions of the area this evening, then will spread farther east/northeast early Saturday morning. Precipitation continues through much of the day Saturday, before coming to an end from west to east late Saturday afternoon or Saturday evening.

12z European model simulated radar forecast valid from 7 PM Friday to 1 AM Sunday.

Snow (blue)

Rain (green)

Wintry Mix (pink)

Note: Arrival time for when precipitation begins in Duluth and Superior varies quite a bit in model guidance this afternoon, ranging from as early as 2 AM Saturday to as late as 9 AM Saturday. Precipitation diminishes late Saturday afternoon ~5 to 7 PM.

Areas that see mostly snow could pick up about 1 to 3 inches of accumulation by late Saturday afternoon, while the areas that get more of a mix can expect snow accumulations up to an inch. Note: Should snow become the dominant precipitation type with this system, then it’s possible we could see higher snow amounts in both the 1-3″ and trace-1″ zones.

Patchy freezing rain is possible in parts of the Northland Saturday morning (before Noon) with ice accretion of a trace to around 0.05″ possible.

Another decent precipitation event on the way for the Northland, with amounts ranging from around a quarter to half inch by early Sunday morning.

A summer like ridge covers the southeast U.S. today while two troughs, one in the northern stream, the other in the southern stream move east into the Midwest and Great Lakes on Saturday.


March 2021 has been a warm one across the Northland, with all 5 climate locations (Ashland, Brainerd, Hibbing, International Falls and Duluth) likely having a top 10 warmest March on record when all is said and done.

Average temperature and departure from normal for March 2021 (thru the 25th)

  • Brainerd, MN: 35.8 F; +8.1 degrees above normal
  • Ashland, WI: 33.6 F; +7.4 degrees above normal
  • Duluth, MN: 33.5 F; +8.7 degrees above normal
  • International Falls, MN: 33.2 F; +11.1 degrees above normal
  • Hibbing, MN: 32.1 F; +9.1 degrees above normal

Precipitation so far for March 2021 has varied considerably across the Northland, with Duluth reporting 2.25″ of precipitation thru the 25th, while International Falls has only had 0.17″ of precipitation. Duluth is running >1″ above normal this month, while International Falls is running nearly 0.75″ below normal.

Note: The black outlined area on the map could really use some precipitation, and hopefully that area will get some with Saturday’s system.

Precipitation total so far for March 2021 at International Falls is just 18% of normal, while Duluth is running nearly 200% of normal (192%)


A brief but nice warmup looks likely on Monday with highs getting into the 60s in most of northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin, while 70s are possible in parts of western Minnesota, and I think there is even a slight chance that a few locations in the Northland make a run at 70 degrees Monday afternoon, but this warmth won’t last long as it looks like will see a return to colder temps for the middle of next week ~March 30-April 1, in fact we could see overnight temps drop to the single digits and teens in much of the Northland for the middle of next week, and although this wouldn’t be all that cold if it was January or February, it is pretty cold for late March/early April, in fact it would be a good 10-20 degrees below normal.


Rain and Snow ends tonight; some sun returns Thursday; rain/snow chances Saturday

Rain and snow continues to fall in much of northwest Wisconsin and most of northeast Minnesota late this afternoon, but this precipitation will be ending from west to east by later this evening. Note: Areas that are seeing snow could pick up a half inch to an inch of slushy accumulation this evening.

A large spring storm brought a widespread soaking rain or a rain/snow mix to much of northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin last night and today, but one area that could really use the precip missed out again, and that is the area around International Falls and Littlefork (black outlined area on map).

24-Hour Precipitation Reports Ending 3 PM Wednesday, March 24, 2021

  • Ashland, WI: 1.15″
  • Barnes, WI: 1.04″
  • Washburn, WI: 1.00″
  • Duluth Airport: 0.97″
  • Siren, WI: 0.94″
  • Superior Airport: 0.92″
  • Two Harbors, MN: 0.92″
  • Minong, WI: 0.76″
  • Glidden, WI: 0.64″
  • Solon Springs, WI: 0.63″
  • Moose Lake, MN: 0.61″
  • Ely, MN: 0.58″
  • Hill City, MN: 0.57″
  • Clam Lake, WI: 0.55″
  • Hayward, WI: 0.54″
  • Saginaw, MN: 0.52″
  • Brainerd, MN: 0.41″
  • Cloquet, MN: 0.40″
  • Grand Rapids, MN: 0.37″
  • Bigfork, MN: 0.37″
  • Chisholm-Hibbing Airport: 0.31″
  • Cass Lake, MN: 0.26″
  • Isabella, MN: 0.20″
  • Pine River, MN: 0.16″
  • Walker, MN: 0.15″
  • International Falls, MN: 0.05″

Quieter weather returns to the Northland for Thursday and Friday, with our next system arriving on Saturday with chances for some rain or wet snow. Some light snowfall accumulations are possible in parts of the Northland with this system on Saturday. Stay tuned.


It’s an active weather pattern with three systems impacting different parts of the U.S.

Yellow=An exiting system with rain and snow ending in the Northland tonight.

Magenta and Orange=Severe Weather Outbreak tonight and Thursday.

Black=A potential system impacting the Northland on Saturday.

The potential exists for another severe weather outbreak on Thursday, with several long-track strong tornadoes, scattered large hail and severe/destructive winds across a portion of the lower Mississippi Valley, Tennessee Valley and Southeast.

Strong mid to upper level winds, a change of wind direction with height, combined with a deepening surface low, plenty of warm, humid and unstable air sets the stage for a potentially big day for severe weather and tornadoes on Thursday from southern portions of the Ohio Valley south to Mississippi and Alabama.

SRH (Storm Relative Helicity) values of around 300 m2/s2 to 500 m2/s2 are forecast Thursday afternoon from Kentucky and Tennessee south to Mississippi and Alabama which indicates a potential for supercell thunderstorms capable of producing tornadoes.

Significant tornado parameters are very high Thursday afternoon across parts of Mississippi and Alabama, with values ranging from around 4 to as high as 16 (yellow, orange, red and magenta colors) Note: Significant tornadoes can occur when the STP is >1, so these values the 18z HRRR model is forecasting on Thursday is alarming!

18z HRRR model updraft helicity forecast shows a few waves of rotating thunderstorms, one tonight, and a few others Thursday/Thursday evening. The darker colors represent a higher chance for a rotating supercell/possible tornadic thunderstorm.

18z HRRR model simulated radar forecast thru 7 AM Friday.