April Recap (Through Saturday)

Monday is the last day of April, so it might be good to take a look back at April (at least through Saturday) here in the Twin Cities. Temperature-wise, we all know that it's been a cold April in the upper Midwest. Through Saturday, the average temperature was 11.1F below average for the month, on the back of 20 lows (tied for fourth most in April) and eight highs of 32 or below. We did see warmth finally make a return to the state by the end of the month, though, helping to raise that average temperature up a little bit.

With warmer end to the month, we have climbed out of first place for the coldest April on record in the Twin Cities. If the month had ended Saturday, we would be in second place. However, with another warm day expected Monday, our average temperature for the month will continue to climb, and so could the monthly ranking.

 
Even with all the snow this month (we'll get to that in a moment) we are actually below average in the preciptiation department this month, with only 2.17" of rain/melted snow. We could be able to make up some ground on that with the potential of some early morning storms Monday.
 

And we finally get to the snow. This is your sad reminder that 15.8" of snow fell between the 13th and the 16th, becoming the largest April snowstorm in Twin Cities history as well as the 12th largest all-time snowstorm. On the back of that heavy snow, we saw a grand total of 26.1" of snow this month, a whopping 23.8" above average. The greatest one day total was 11.1" on the 14th, and there was 11" of snow on the ground on the 16th.

The total of 26.1" of snow at MSP airport places this April as the snowiest on record for the Twin Cities, beating out the 21.8" in 1983 by 4.3".

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Severe Storm Risk This Week

Finally - it's about time for some thunderstorms here in Minnesota! Unfortunately, some of the storms this week will come along with the threat of severe weather as well. The first threat is Monday Night across parts of central and western Minnesota, where a Marginal Risk of severe weather is in place. A Slight Risk does nudge into far southwestern Minnesota as well during this time frame. Large hail and damaging winds would be possible.

As a cold front dives across the state Tuesday, another chance of some strong to severe thunderstorms will pop up across parts of southern and eastern Minnesota into western Wisconsin during the afternoon and evening hours. Again, large hail and damaging winds would be the main threats.

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A Few Welcome Showers Over The Next 72 Hours
By Paul Douglas


I predict there will be open water for the Governor's Fishing Opener on Green Lake, in Spicer on May 10. My semi-educated hunch: most lakes in southern & central Minnesota will be open for business in the next 2 weeks, with an extended run of 60s, a few 70s - and nighttime lows consistently above freezing. Northern Minnesota is a different story; watch for icebergs from Gull and Pelican to The Whitefish Chain and Leech Lake. I'm just the messenger.

20 percent of the USA is in moderate drought, as close to us as the Dakotas. Extreme to exceptional drought is gripping the central & southern Plains and southwest. We won't be complaining about rain anytime soon.

A most welcome warm front sparks showers, with a clap of thunder this morning - enough PM sun for highs near 80F. Hello summer! Showers and T-storms linger into midweek, but by Thursday this sloppy frontal boundary pushes just south of the state. Next weekend looks sunny and cooler as Canadian air leaks south once again. We've turned a big corner, spring has arrived.

The Delayed Green-up of 2018 kicks in this week.  Finally!

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Extended Twin Cities Forecast

MONDAY: Few T-showers, warmer! High 80. Low 60. Chance of precipitation 70%. Wind S 15-25 mph.
TUESDAY: Some sun, another shower or T-storm. High 73. Low 52. Chance of precipitation 60%. Wind SW 10-15 mph.
WEDNESDAY: Unsettled a few more showers. High 67. Low 51. Chance of precipitation 60%. Wind NE 7-12 mph.
THURSDAY: Mostly cloudy, showers may stay south. High 68. Low 50. Chance of precipitation 20%. Wind W 5-10 mph.
FRIDAY: Plenty of sun with a stiff breeze. High 69. Low 48. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind NW 10-20 mph.
SATURDAY: Sunny with a refreshing breeze. High 63. Low 47. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind NW 10-15 mph.
SUNDAY: Blue sky lingers, no complaints. High 69. Low 52. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind S 5-10 mph.

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This Day in Weather History
April 30th

2004: After a high temperature of 91 on the previous day in the Twin Cities, the mercury tumbles to 47 degrees by the morning. St. Cloud sheds 50 degrees over 12 hours.

1967: Tornadoes hit southern Minnesota. Some of the towns affected were Albert Lea, Waseca, Wells, and Owatonna.

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Average Temperatures & Precipitation for Minneapolis
April 30th

Average High: 65F (Record: 91F set in 1952)
Average Low: 44F (Record: 24F set in 1903)
Average Precipitation: 0.11" (Record: 1.53" set in 1954)
Average Snow: 0.0" (Record: 3.1" set in 1984)

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Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
April 30th

Sunrise: 6:03 AM
Sunset: 8:17 PM

*Length Of Day: 14 hours, 13 minutes and 32 seconds
*Daylight Gained Since Yesterday: ~2 minutes and 45 seconds

*Next Sunrise Before 6 AM: May 3rd (5:59 AM)
*Next Sunset Of 8:30 PM Or Later: May 11th (8:30 PM)
*When Do We Hit 15 Hours Of Daylight? May 19th (Daylight Length: 15:00:05)

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Minnesota Weather Outlook

First, a quick note that you could be woken up by a few rumbles of thunder through the overnight hours Sunday night into early Monday morning as storms form across southern and central Minnesota. Storms that form overnight will move northeast into early Monday morning.

Any early morning thunderstorms will quickly fade away to a mix of clouds and sun Monday in the Twin Cities. Temperatures willl climb into the 70s during the midday hours, reaching a high around 80 during the late afternoon hours. This warmth will be transported in by strong southerly winds, which will gust up to around 30 mph during the day.

Taking a look statewide, while you may wake up to a few storms tomorrow morning in parts of eastern Minnesota, sunnier skies will quickly take over by the midday hours with highs climbing into the 70s and 80s during the afternoon hours. The last time we hit 80 in the Twin Cities was back on September 24th, when the thermometer hit 90. Meanwhile, the average first 80 for the Twin Cities is May 3rd, so we will actually be close to when we typically hit 80 for the first time (unlike the first 60 and 70 on the season) - of course, that is if we do hit 80. The coolest weather will be found across parts of the Arrowhead and around Lake of the Woods, with highs only in the 50s and 60s.

Highs across most of the state Monday will be a good 10-20 degrees above average for this time of year.

Just like the Twin Cities, winds will be blustery Monday across the state, gusting over 30 mph in spots across central and southern Minnesota.

In the Twin Cities, after potentially touching 80 Monday, highs will be a bit cooler through the rest of the week. Temperatures will climb into the 70s ahead of the cold front Tuesday before dropping closer to average for the middle and end of the week.

Several chances for rain exist this week in the Twin Cities, with the best potential occurring through the first half of the week. Storms during that time period could bring a quarter inch to an inch of rain along with them according to the models. Another chance of rain could exist later in the week, but it all depends where the front that drives across the state early this week ends up.

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National Weather Forecast

Storms will be possible across the southern Rockies into the Plains and upper Midwest on Monday, with warmth quickly building across the region as well. Some rain and higher elevation snow is also expected into parts of the central and northern Rockies into the Intermountain West and Pacific Northwest. As of Saturday, Seattle was sitting at their third wettest April on record with 5.69" of rain so far this month - they'll have one more day to approach second place (5.89" in 2013), however they would need over 0.80" of an inch to take a run toward first place (6.53" in 1991). Meanwhile, a departing center of low pressure will bring rain and some early morning snow showers to parts of New England.

The heaviest rain through Friday morning will be across parts of the upper Midwest and Great Lakes, where rainfall totals could top 2-3" in spots, especially in eastern Nebraska and into Iowa. There will be the potential of flash flooding across the areas that recieve the heaviest rain, especially as we head into Tuesday and Wednesday.

The threat of severe weather will exist across the central United States this week. On Monday, a Slight Risk of severe weather extends from South Dakota and far southwestern Minnesoa all the way into Texas. Damaging winds and large hail will be the main threats.

The threat of severe storms in the central part of the nation ramps up Tuesday, with an Enhanced Risk of severe weather across parts of Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri and Kansas. Storms will form along a cold front by the late afternoon hours capable of mainly large hail and damging winds, however a tornado can't be ruled out in the initial development of the storms.

The severe storm potential continues into Wednesday, with a large area of Kansas and Oklahoma covered by a 30% probability of severe weather. This day will likely have the best potential of tornadoes - with some significant ones possible - as well as very large hail. Storms could start to form across this region as early as 1 or 2 PM.

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"New model could help build communities of climate change-defying trees"

More from Phys.org: "Researchers in Australia have developed a model to help build plant communities that are more resilient to climate change. Their research, published in the journal eLife, could lead to improved decisions around where seeds are sourced during reforestation efforts, to ensure that newly planted trees are strong enough to tolerate their future climate. "Many species are facing rapid changes in their environments due to global warming and other human disturbances. Increased variation in a species' genetic material, known as its genome, may allow a species to better adapt to these changes," says first author Megan Supple, who conducted this research while a postdoctoral researcher at The Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra."

"Hurricanes Bring Invasive Species"

More from the Earther: "Pollution isn’t the only thing the 2017 hurricane season spread far and wide. Plants and animals were sloshed around by the storms too, and some wound up far from home, setting the stage for new ecological invasions. That’s why the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has spent the past six months putting together a series of maps to help biologists track down unwelcome newcomers introduced by hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, and Nate. The maps allow users to see where more than 200 non-native aquatic species, from snails to crocodiles, might have wound up thanks to the storms."

"Can we stop the Arctic meltdown?"

More from The Guardian: "This week, The Upside has been focused on hopeful news about the environment, which will be a welcome reprieve for anyone who read Mayer Hillman’s interview in the Guardian in which he concluded that climate change meant “we’re doomed”. As part of the Arctic Dispatches series, reporting from Alaska, Oliver Milman asked whether the catastrophic melting of Arctic ice could be reversed using an unlikely substance – sand. It’s a compelling read that explores unusual ways technology and creative thinking could be employed to slow the effects of climate change."

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Thanks for checking in and have a great Monday! Don't forget to follow me on Twitter (@dkayserwx) and like me on Facebook (Meteorologist D.J. Kayser)!

 - D.J. Kayser

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