Very cold tonight and Thursday; Windy with a little snow Friday; More snow possible at times February 20-23

6:02 PM Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Arctic air returns to the Northland for tonight and Thursday, and more shots of arctic air look to impact our area through much of next week, but hey we’re just 31 days, 16 hours and 31 minutes away from the official start to spring (March 20th!), while the first day of meteorological spring is less than 2 weeks away (March 1st!)

Besides the arctic air, wind will also be a big issue at times through this weekend as we deal with different air masses going from arctic air to milder air then back to arctic air. Friday and Friday night look particularly windy this is when we may have wind gusts of 25 to 40 mph or stronger in the Northland with winds shifting from south to northwest. Windy weather may also occur later Saturday as southerly winds develop, and we get a shot of warm air advection before more cold air spreads from north to south on Sunday.

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Two storms through Friday, the first tracks from southern Oklahoma to southeast Ohio with a variety of impacts including heavy snow, sleet, freezing rain, wind, flooding and a risk for severe thunderstorms stretching from the Southern Plains to the Midwest, Ohio Valley and into the northeast U.S., while a clipper on Friday brings a little snow but a lot of wind to the Northern Plains and upper Midwest with a chance for blizzard conditions in parts of North Dakota into western Minnesota.

Here’s a look at the southern storm as it continues to develop early this evening per Goes-16 water vapor imagery.

Energy ejecting ENE (black) which will eventually meet up with a plume of moisture (green)

Many different weather alerts in effect tonight into Thursday.

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  • Wind Chill Advisory in effect from Midnight tonight to 10 AM Thursday including north-central, northeast and parts of east-central Minnesota and the cities of International Falls, Bigfork, Grand Rapids, Cass Lake, Walker, Pine River, Brainerd, Aitkin, Hill City, Moose Lake, Cloquet, Duluth, Hibbing, Virginia, Ely, Cook, Orr, Crane Lake, Two Harbors, Isabella, Silver Bay and Grand Marais. Wind chills as low as 30 to 35 below zero.

HRRR model wind chill forecast thru 9 AM Thursday.

Lows tonight will range from around 5 below to 25 below zero with highs on Thursday only in the single digits above zero, but sunshine should be abundant on Thursday and we’re getting to that time of the year where if it’s sunny it does feel slightly warmer than what the temperature may indicate.

There’s been a significant increase in ice coverage on Lake Superior the last few days with ~45% of Lake Superior covered by ice as of February 15, 2022, this is near to slightly above average ice coverage for mid-February.

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Friday’s clipper will bring some snow to northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin with a chance for brief heavy snow showers/squalls from about mid-morning to mid-afternoon on Friday as a strong cold front plows through the area.

For Duluth — Snow at times beginning after 4 AM Friday. Snow chances diminish mid to late afternoon Friday.

Here’s my snowfall forecast for Friday.

As I mentioned earlier in this post, Friday is looking quite windy in the Northland.

Wind gust forecast per 18z NAM 3km model for Friday.

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Chances for a few rounds of accumulating snow continue early next week, but computer models are in poor agreement on where this snow sets up, with the European model from today showing very little snow in the Northland with higher snow chances setting up farther south, while other computer models keep much of the Northland in the snow zone with a few rounds of snow from February 20-23. Stay tuned.

Odds for getting >6″ of snow in the Northland through February 24 have diminished significantly compared to 24 hours ago per Euro ensemble model, but this is just one model run, and we could easily see the odds increase once again going forward.

Thanks for reading!

Tim

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