Paul Douglas on Weather Logo

Blog

Paul Douglas on Weather

Sticky Sunshine Sunday; Strong Storms & Heavy Rain Overnight

Stormy PM Sunday Expected

"An active afternoon and evening is ahead, with severe weather and heavy rainfall likely. Storms this afternoon will be most likely across central Minnesota, with a line of storms expected to work across Minnesota tonight and into western Wisconsin by Monday morning."

Saturday's Smoky Skies

Did you notice anything different about the sunrises and sunsets this weekend? Didn't the sun look more red/orange than normal? You can thank smoke from distant wildfires in Canada, Northwest Territories and Alaska! A thick plume drifted over the region Friday and Saturday and made for some pretty interesting looking skies. However, not sure if it was just me, but I sure felt like my throat was a little scratchy with all this hazy stuff floating around... Interestingly, the National Weather Service was getting reports of ash falling in the St. Cloud area on Friday!!

Note that even the sun's reflection in the water looks smoky! Neat picture Jackie!!

(Image below courtesy: Jackie Koch)

Poor Air Quality

This was the air quality loop from early Saturday morning, which showed particularly high levels of particulates over parts of central and northern Minnesota. Much of this can be attributed to the smoke across the area thanks to all the wildfires across Canada, Northwest Territories and Alaska. COUGH - HACK - UGH!

Smoke Via Visible Satellite

Thanks to the National Weather Service out of Central Illinois for the image below showing how widespread the smoke was on Saturday, the 4th of July:

The visible satellite image from Saturday morning showed much of the Midwest was still being affected (milky gray shades, contrasted by the bright-white appearance of the clouds). If the smoke gets thick enough, it can actually reduce high temperatures by a couple degrees, similar to thick high clouds. Sunrise and sunset will continue to appear redder than usual, and if the smoke starts to work its way more toward the surface, it can cause irritation for people with breathing difficulties.

See more HERE:

Smoke Analysis 7AM Saturday

Take a look at how thick the smoke was across the Upper Mississippi Valley on Saturday morning. No wonder why it was so hazy and air quality was so bad... YUCK!

Smoke Analysis 7AM Sunday

The good news is that skies should appear more clear on Sunday across much of Minnesota as the smoke looks to drift a little farther east across the Great Lakes.

Stormy Sunday Night
By Todd Nelson

COUGH! HACK! UGH. Not sure about you, but I had a nagging cough and sore throat from all the ambient smoke and haze that was hanging around Saturday. Thanks to several large wildfires in Canada, Northwest Territories and Alaska, air quality close to home was running a bit on the unhealthy side. Interestingly, the National Weather Service was actually getting reports of ash falling around the St. Cloud area on Friday!

The good news is that skies should appear a little more clear Sunday as upper level winds have become more westerly. Winds at the surface will favor a more southerly direction, which will keep the warm and muggy air streaming northward ahead of a storm system that will plow through Sunday night with scattered storms and heavy rain. I wouldn't cancel any outdoor plans as much of the day looks dry, but a few strong storms and heavy rains look to conclude our holiday weekend overnight. The morning rush Monday looks wet as scattered storms rumble toward Wisconsin. 1 to 2 inches may be possible in central MN by PM Monday.

Heads up; temps near 90 degrees by mid July could prompt many to mutter a familiar summer phrase, "It's too hot."
__________________________

SATURDAY NIGHT: Warm and sticky - still dry. Low: 67. Winds: SSW 5-10

SUNDAY: Breezy. Sticky sun, T-storms at night. High: 87. Winds: S 10-20.

SUNDAY NIGHT: Storms develop (a few strong) with heavy rainfall. Low: 69. Winds: S 10-15

MONDAY: AM T-showers, slow PM clearing. High: 78. Winds: Turning NW 10-15

TUESDAY: Sunny, just about perfect with lower humidity. Wake-up: 59. High: 77

WEDNESDAY: Comfortable. More PM clouds. Wake-up: 60. High: 78

THURSDAY: Warmer. Stray PM T-shower? Wake-up: 68. High: 80.

FRIDAY: Sticky. Scattered PM rumbles. Wake up: 64. High: 84.

SATURDAY: Feels like summer. Unsettled PM. Wake-up: 65. High: 86.
__________________________

This Day in Weather History
July 5th

1999: Flooding over the Arrowhead. The largest 24-hour rainfall total was 8.84 inches in central St. Louis County.
___________________________

Average High/Low for Minneapolis
July 5th

Average High: 83F (Record: 100F set in 1982)
Average Low: 64F (Record: 45F set in 1972)
____________________________

Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
July 5th

Sunrise: 5:33am
Sunset: 9:02pm
______________________________

Moon Phase for July 5th at Midnight
2.6 Days Before Last Quarter


______________________________

Minneapolis Temperature Trend

Mild and near average temperatures continue over the next several days with highs in the mid to upper 70s and low to mid 80s. Extended model runs are suggesting a bit of a warm up by mid July with highs approaching 90F.


___________________________________

Sunday Weather Outlook

Much of the day Sunday will be nice and dry with sunshine and mild temperatures. It certainly won't be as hazy as it was on Saturday, but it will be a little breezy and more sticky as the dewpoint climbs a bit.

Sunday Weather Outlook

Much of the day Sunday will be dry, but a front moving in from the northwest will be responsible for scattered showers and storms late in the day/overnight. The images below suggest weather conditions by 5pm Sunday with showers and storms across northwestern Minnesota and the eastern Dakotas. Some of these storms could be strong to possibly severe with heavy rainfall...

Rain Potential

Scattered thunderstorms look to develop late Sunday across the Dakotas and northern Minnesota. The trend will be to push east through Minnesota and Wisconsin Sunday night and Monday with potentially some strong storms, but also heavy rain. The forecast calls for as much as 1" to nearly 3" in spots through early week.

Sunday Severe Threat

A fairly vigorous storm system will push through the Midwest late Sunday afternoon/overnight with strong to possible severe storms across the region. The Storm Prediction Center has highlighted areas that have the best chance of severe storms through early Monday morning.

Simulated Radar 7pm Sunday

Simulated Radar 10pm Sunday

Simulated Radar 1am Monday

Simulated Radar 4am Monday

Simulated Radar 7am Monday


_____________________________________

National Weather Outlook

Scattered storms and heavy rainfall potential will round out the weekend across the southeastern part of the U.S., while another storm system develops across the Midwest. Note the storm system plowing south through the Midwest/Plains through into early next week. This will be responsible for scattered storms (some strong to severe) and heavy rainfall.

3 Day Precipitation Outlook

According to NOAA's WPC, the 3 day precipitation outlook shows pockets of heavy rainfall potential across parts of the Upper Midwest, the Central/Southern Plains and from the Lower Mississippi Valley to the Mid-Atlantic States. The heaviest amounts may be 1" to 3" or more possible through Tuesday.

5 Day Precipitation Outlook

If we extend the precipitation outlook another 2 days, rainfall tallies look even more impressive over the Central/Southern Plains with as much as 2" to nearly 5" through Thursday. This may even lead to localized flooding concerns.


________________________________________

Severe Threat Saturday

...SUMMARY... THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING WINDS ARE EXPECTED ESPECIALLY THIS AFTERNOON AND EVENING ACROSS PARTS OF THE NORTHERN PLAINS AND UPPER MIDWEST INCLUDING SOUTH DAKOTA AND FAR NORTHERN NEBRASKA INTO MINNESOTA AND FAR NORTHERN IOWA. ...SYNOPSIS... THE LARGE-SCALE PATTERN WILL BE HIGHLIGHTED BY AN AMPLIFYING UPPER TROUGH/STRENGTHENING POLAR JET OVER THE CENTRAL CANADIAN PRAIRIES AND THE ADJACENT DAKOTAS/UPPER MIDWEST...WITH A RELATED COLD FRONT EXPECTED TO GENERALLY ADVANCE SOUTHEASTWARD ACROSS THE DAKOTAS/NORTH-CENTRAL HIGH PLAINS AND UPPER MIDWEST THROUGH EARLY MONDAY. IN THE SOUTHERN STREAM OVER THE SOUTHERN CONUS...A SLOW-MOVING UPPER LOW WILL MOVE NORTHEASTWARD OVER THE TN VALLEY/SOUTHERN APPALACHIANS. ...NORTHERN PLAINS/UPPER MIDWEST... ONGOING STORMS ACROSS NORTHERN MT EARLY IN THE OVERNIGHT SHOULD PERSIST EAST-SOUTHEASTWARD TODAY INTO PARTS OF ND/NORTHERN SD...WITH SOME EARLY DAY SEVERE POTENTIAL REMAINING A POSSIBILITY. PENDING THEIR OVERNIGHT EVOLUTION...THE LINGERING STORM CLUSTERS/MCS AND RELATED COOL POOL/CLOUD COVER CAST SOME UNCERTAINTY ON THE EXTENT/MAGNITUDE OF NEAR-FRONTAL DESTABILIZATION WITH NORTHWARD EXTENT ACROSS ND/NORTHWEST MN. HOWEVER...ANY RESIDUAL COLD POOL/MCV MAY BE A PRE-FRONTAL IMPETUS FOR RENEWED CONVECTIVE DEVELOPMENT/INTENSIFICATION THIS AFTERNOON SOMEWHERE WITHIN A CORRIDOR FROM FAR EAST/SOUTHEAST ND INTO NORTHERN MN. REGARDLESS OF THE EVOLUTION DETAILS...AT LEAST SOME DAMAGING WINDS/SEVERE HAIL POTENTIAL WILL BE POSSIBLE ON THE PRESUMPTIONS OF MODERATE NEAR/PRE-FRONTAL DESTABILIZATION THIS AFTERNOON/EARLY EVENING. FARTHER SOUTH/SOUTHWEST...A SOMEWHAT MORE CONCENTRATED/CERTAIN SEVERE THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT SHOULD OCCUR NEAR/JUST BEHIND THE SOUTHEASTWARD-ADVANCING FRONT BY LATE AFTERNOON/EARLY EVENING PARTICULARLY IN A CORRIDOR SPANNING SOUTHWEST/CENTRAL/NORTHEAST SD. THIS REGION WILL BE INFLUENCED BY DPVA/HEIGHT FALLS AND STRENGTHENING MID/HIGHER-LEVEL CYCLONIC WESTERLIES. VERY STEEP MID-LEVEL LAPSE RATES/AMPLE BUOYANCY AND 40+ KT OF EFFECTIVE SHEAR /MAXIMIZED NEAR AND JUST BEHIND THE FRONT/ WILL SUPPORT INITIAL SUPERCELLS WITH THE POSSIBILITY OF VERY LARGE /2+ INCH DIAMETER/ HAIL. A TORNADO OR TWO COULD ALSO OCCUR EARLY THIS EVENING...BUT THE OVERALL TORNADO POTENTIAL WILL TEND TO BE LIMITED BY RELATIVELY HIGH CLOUD BASES. TOWARD/AFTER SUNSET...STORM MERGERS/PROBABLE COLD POOL DEVELOPMENT IN CONJUNCTION WITH A NOCTURNALLY STRENGTHENING SOUTHWESTERLY LOW-LEVEL JET SHOULD LEAD TO AN UPSCALE GROWING/FORWARD PROPAGATING MCS EAST-SOUTHEASTWARD INTO EASTERN SD AND SOUTHERN MN/NORTHERN IA. ACCORDINGLY...A CORRIDOR OF DAMAGING WIND POTENTIAL SHOULD INCREASE/CONTINUE THROUGH AT LEAST THE EVENING HOURS...AND POSSIBLY EVEN PERSIST OVERNIGHT ACROSS SOUTHERN MN/NORTHERN IA TOWARD THE UPPER MS RIVER VALLEY. ...ARKLATEX/LOWER MS VALLEY/SOUTHEAST STATES... RESIDUAL OUTFLOWS/DIFFERENTIAL HEATING SHOULD LEAD TO MULTIPLE CORRIDORS OF THUNDERSTORM INTENSIFICATION BY AFTERNOON SPANNING THE ARKLATEX/LOWER MS VALLEY...EAST-NORTHEASTWARD TO THE SOUTHEAST STATES/CAROLINAS ON THE EAST/SOUTHEAST PERIPHERY OF THE TN VALLEY UPPER LOW. WHILE MID-LEVEL LAPSE RATES AND VERTICAL SHEAR WILL BE RELATIVELY WEAK...STEEPENING LOW-LEVEL LAPSE RATES COINCIDENT WITH POCKETS OF STRONGER HEATING WILL ALLOW FOR STRONGER PULSE-TYPE STORMS AND THE EVOLUTION OF SOME LINE SEGMENTS. THE STRONGER STORMS WILL PRODUCE DOWNBURSTS CAPABLE OF LOCALIZED WIND DAMAGE THIS AFTERNOON/EARLY EVENING.

Severe Threat Sunday

...SUMMARY...
   WIDELY SCATTERED STRONG TO SEVERE STORM DEVELOPMENT IS POSSIBLE
   MONDAY IN A CORRIDOR FROM THE UPPER MIDWEST SOUTHWESTWARD INTO THE
   SOUTH CENTRAL PLAINS.

   ...SYNOPSIS...
   WITHIN A STRONGER BELT OF MID-LATITUDE WESTERLIES EXTENDING ACROSS
   SOUTHERN CANADA AND THE NORTHERN TIER OF THE U.S...A SIGNIFICANT
   EMBEDDED SHORT WAVE TROUGH IS FORECAST TO GRADUALLY TURN EASTWARD
   ALONG THE CENTRAL CANADIAN/U.S. BORDER AREA DURING THIS PERIOD.
   THIS FEATURE MAY SUPPORT SIGNIFICANT CYCLOGENESIS ALONG AN
   ASSOCIATED SURFACE FRONTAL ZONE...EITHER ACROSS OR NORTHEAST OF THE
   UPPER GREAT LAKES REGION.  CONSIDERABLE SPREAD HAS BEEN PRESENT
   AMONG THE MODELS AND WITHIN THEIR RESPECTIVE ENSEMBLE OUTPUT
   CONCERNING THESE DEVELOPMENTS...AND THIS IS ADDING TO UNCERTAINTY
   WITH REGARD TO CONVECTIVE POTENTIAL FOR THIS PERIOD.

   ...UPPER MIDWEST INTO SOUTH CENTRAL PLAINS...
   IN ADVANCE OF THE UPPER IMPULSE...MODELS DO APPEAR IN GENERAL
   AGREEMENT THAT A PLUME OF RELATIVELY STEEP MID-LEVEL LAPSE
   RATES...ASSOCIATED WITH VERY WARM ELEVATED MIXED LAYER AIR EMANATING
   FROM THE ROCKIES/PLATEAU REGION...WILL BEGIN TO STABILIZE BY EARLY
   MONDAY.  THIS IS EXPECTED TO RESULT FROM A COMBINATION OF
   CONSIDERABLE THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT LATE SUNDAY INTO SUNDAY
   NIGHT...ALONG AND AHEAD OF THE FRONT...FROM PORTIONS OF THE NORTH
   CENTRAL PLAINS INTO THE UPPER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY...AS WELL AS
   CONTINUED WARMING AT HIGHER LEVELS ABOVE THIS PLUME /WARMING ABOVE
   -6 C AT 500 MB/.  MODELS ALSO APPEAR TO GENERALLY INDICATE THAT THE
   SURFACE FRONTAL ZONE WILL CONTINUE TO CONSIDERABLY OUTRUN THE COOLER
   AIR ALOFT ASSOCIATED WITH THE UPPER IMPULSE.  STRONGER MID/UPPER
   WIND FIELDS MAY ALSO LAG TO THE COOL SIDE OF THE FRONT...EXCEPT
   PERHAPS PORTIONS OF WISCONSIN INTO UPPER MICHIGAN...WHERE EARLY
   PERIOD CONVECTIVE CLOUDS AND PRECIPITATION MAY LIMIT SURFACE
   HEATING.

   PERHAPS OFFSETTING THESE POTENTIAL LIMITING FACTORS...MODELS DO
   INDICATE CONTINUED MOISTENING WITHIN THE PRE-FRONTAL CORRIDOR FROM
   PARTS OF THE SOUTH CENTRAL PLAINS THROUGH THE UPPER MIDWEST...WHERE
   LOWER/MID 70S SURFACE DEW POINTS APPEAR POSSIBLE.  DESPITE THE LACK
   OF STEEPER MID-LEVEL LAPSE RATES...SEASONABLY HIGH BOUNDARY LAYER
   MOISTURE CONTENT MAY CONTRIBUTE TO MODERATELY LARGE CAPE /WITH
   LATENT INSTABILITY EXTENDING THROUGH A DEEP TROPOSPHERIC LAYER/.

   WHILE THIS ENVIRONMENT IS EXPECTED TO BE CONDUCIVE TO THE
   DEVELOPMENT OF CONSIDERABLE THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY ALONG THE LENGTH
   OF THE FRONT MONDAY AFTERNOON AND EVENING...THE EXTENT OF THE SEVERE
   WEATHER POTENTIAL REMAINS UNCLEAR.  IT MAY LARGELY HINGE OF THE
   STRENGTH OF THE PRE-FRONTAL SOUTHERLY 850 MB WIND FIELDS WHICH
   REMAINS UNCERTAIN AT THE PRESENT TIME...WITH HEAVY PRECIPITATION
   LOADING AND DOWNWARD MOMENTUM TRANSFER BOTH POSSIBLY CONTRIBUTING TO
   THE RISK FOR POTENTIAL DAMAGING WIND GUSTS.


___________________________________-

8 to 14 Day Temperature Outlook

According to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center, the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook suggests that areas in the Eastern U.S. and Alaska have a chance of warmer than average temperatures through mid July.

"How will El Niño affect 2015’s placement among the warmest years on record?"

Here's an interesting story from Climate.gov about how this year's El Nino could make for one of the warmest years on record:

"El Niño is characterized by, among other things, a large footprint of warmer-than-normal surface water across much of the tropical Pacific Ocean. This footprint contributes directly to warmer globally-averaged temperatures, in the same way that, if you leave one of your stovetop burners on “warm” the average temperature of the whole stovetop is warmer. But the warm footprint also adds heat to the atmosphere, just like the warm burner heats the air just above it. The atmosphere carries this along, reinforcing, over time, the direct heating from the “warm burner” in the tropical Pacific. Bringing it back to this year, this El Niño event, as it continues to take hold, will definitely increase 2015’s chances to place among the warmest years, if not the warmest, on record. We’ll touch base again towards the end of the year for a recap. Until then, I hope you’ve enjoyed going Beyond the Data."

See more from Climate.gov HERE:


______________________________________

"PGA meteorologist Brad Nelson keeps golfers safe"

Here's a neat story about my good friend and former classmate from St. Cloud State University, Brad Nelson, who works as a PGA meteorologist:

"A unique professional is in attendance at the Nova Scotia Open being held at Ashburn Golf Club. Not a golfer, caddie, or member of a television crew. No, Brad Nelson is a highly trained onsite meteorologist for Schneider Electric, contracted by the PGA Tour. It's his job to ensure that participants and spectators remain safe in the elements, and it can be challenging. Brad begins by telling me about the top weather hazard in golf. "The number one related hazard out here is definitely lightning." In order to aid him in lightning detection Brad brings a very specific instrument to the event. This is a CS-110 lightning detection system developed by Campbell Scientific.  The instrument measures the electric charge in the atmosphere. As a storm approaches, the voltage measured by the unit increases and at a certain threshold, an alarm is issued. At that point shelter should be sought indoors. Can the onsite meteorologist and his lightning detection system make for a safer experience? So far the results say yes."

See the full story from CBC.ca HERE:

(image courtesy: CBC)

Thanks for checking in and have a great rest of your weekend and week ahead! Don't forget to follow me on Twitter @TNelsonWX

Spectacular 4th of July Weekend Ahead; Stormy Sunday Night

(Image credit: U.S. Air Force)

"Nationwide study measures short-term spike in particulate matter due to Independence Day fireworks"

Here's an interesting study from NOAA that shows a particularly high spike in air pollution due to fireworks!

"The new research shows that hourly concentrations of fine particulate matter typically reach their highest levels, when compared to the days before and after July 4, on the evening of July 4. Levels drop back down by noon on July 5, according to the research. On average, the increases are largest from 9-10 p.m. on the holiday. Average concentrations over the 24-hour period starting at 8 p.m. on July 4 are 42 percent greater than on the days preceding and following the holiday."

See more from NOAA HERE:


____________________________

Happy 4th of July
By Todd Nelson

Somehow, the stars have aligned for what looks like a pretty spectacular 4th of July weekend! Don't be surprised if you find yourself 'sighing' with a meek smile at points Saturday or Sunday; it's OK, you deserve it!

Keep in mind that we're only 2 weeks removed from the Summer Solstice, so the sun is still very intense and UV index will be very high, meaning it will only take 15 minutes or less to get a burn.

Smoky sunrises and sunsets should be pretty neat this weekend too as several large wildfires continue across Canada, Northwest Territories and Alaska. Smoke plumes will drift south into the Upper Midwest with the heaviest concentration of smoke over Minnesota and Wisconsin Saturday and early Sunday.

It'll be a warm weekend, but it gets a little more humid on Sunday as a storm system approaches from Canada. Much of the region will start the day dry on Sunday, but the holiday weekend could conclude with some heavy downpours and strong thunderstorms, especially overnight.

Interestingly, a recent study from NOAA suggests a short-term spike in air pollution due to 4th of July fireworks; check the blog for more details.

Happy 4th!!
____________________________

FRIDAY NIGHT: Isolated rumbles ending early, otherwise partly cloudy. Low: 63. Winds: W 5

4TH OF JULY: Warm sunshine, dry. High: 84. Winds: S 10.

SATURDAY NIGHT: Warm and sticky - still dry. Low: 67

SUNDAY: Breezy. Sticky sun, T-storms at night. High: 86. Winds: S/SW 10-20.

MONDAY: AM T-showers, slow PM clearing. Wake-up: 67. High: 78

TUESDAY: Sunny, just about perfect with lower humidity. Wake-up: 60. High: 77

WEDNESDAY: Dry start, late day rumble. Wake-up: 62. High: 79

THURSDAY: Unsettled. Pockets of heavy rain. Wake-up: 63. High: 81.

FRIDAY: Feels like summer. Wake up: 65. High: 83.
___________________________

This Day in Weather History
July 4th

1999: Windstorm knocked down millions of trees in the BWCA, 19 people were injured.

1977: An intense squall line, or derecho, brought 115 mph winds to northern Wisconsin as the storms traveled from Minnesota to Lake Erie. A tremendous amount of forest was destroyed during the blowdown.

1962: Downpour at Jackson, where 7.5 inches of rain fell in two hours.
_____________________________

Average High/Low for Minneapolis
July 4th

Average High: 83F (Record: 101F set in 2012)
Average Low: 64F (Record: 43F set in 1972)
_____________________________

Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
July 4th

Sunrise: 5:32am
Sunset: 9:02pm
_____________________________

Moon Phase for July 4th at Midnight
3.6 Days Before Last Quarter


_______________________________

Minneapolis Temperature Trend

It really has been an incredible stretch of weather as of late. While temperatures for the first few days of July have been running cooler than average, it hasn't been anything to complain about. Temperatures for the month of June ended up only 0.8F above average and we've only seen one +90F temperature reading so far this year (92F on June 9th). Looking at the temperatures ahead, I still don't see any major heat waves brewing close to home. In fact, the forecast keeps us pretty seasonal through much of next week!


__________________________________

Saturday: 4th of July Weather Outlook

Saturday, July 4th will likely end up being one of warmest days for the first half of July. Temperatures across the state should warm into the 80s with cooler readings expected along the North Shore. I expect lots of boat traffic and picnics on Saturday with the weather being as nice as it's going to be! Enjoy

Saturday: 4th of July Weather Outlook

There may be a (spotty) afternoon rumble of thunder across parts of Wisconsin and far southeastern MN, but don't cancel any plans; It should only be brief if any develops. Sun


______________________________________

SUNDAY Severe Threat

The Storm Prediction Center has issued a SLIGHT RISK of severe weather across parts of the Midwest for late Sunday. A cool front will slide out of Canada late weekend and bring some late day showers and storms across the region. The end of your holiday weekend could end with a bang, stay tuned for further updates!

Rainfall Potential

As the front slides out of Canada late this weekend, showers and storms will develop and slide into the Upper Midwest. Rainfall tallies could be heavy in pockets with as much as 1" to nearly 2" possible in spots through PM Monday.


__________________________________________

National Weather Outlook

As we head through the holiday weekend, scattered showers and storms look to impact 4th of July celebrations across the the Gulf Coast States and perhaps across parts of the Four Corners and High Plains. Other than that, it looks like a pretty tame weekend ahead for most!

5 Day Precipitation Outlook

According to NOAA's HPC, the 5 day rainfall forecast suggests several pocket of heavy rain along and east of the Rockies through midweek next week. The heaviest looks possible over parts of the Plains with as much as 4" or more!

Severe Threat Saturday

...SUMMARY... SCATTERED STRONG STORMS WILL POSE A RISK FOR SEVERE WIND GUSTS AND HAIL ON SATURDAY...THE 4TH OF JULY...MAINLY DURING THE AFTERNOON AND EVENING HOURS ACROSS PARTS OF THE LOWER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY...THE NORTHERN AND CENTRAL HIGH PLAINS...AND THE GREAT BASIN. ...SYNOPSIS... SPLIT UPPER-LEVEL FLOW WILL PREVAIL OVER THE CONUS ON SATURDAY JULY 4TH. IN THE SOUTHERN STREAM...A MODERATE BELT OF WESTERLIES WILL ACCOMPANY A SLOW-EASTWARD-MOVING UPPER LOW OVER THE LOWER MS RIVER VALLEY/SOUTHEAST STATES...WHILE THE UPPER RIDGE ABATES OVER THE GREAT BASIN. A STRONGER NORTHERN STREAM WILL BE HIGHLIGHTED BY AN AMPLIFYING UPPER TROUGH OVER THE CANADIAN ROCKIES/PRAIRIES...WHICH WILL RELATE TO A SOUTHEASTWARD-MOVING FRONT INTO PORTIONS OF MT/DAKOTAS SATURDAY NIGHT. ...CENTRAL/SOUTHERN HIGH PLAINS... THE TIMING OF WEAK MID-LEVEL PERTURBATIONS ON THE PERIPHERY OF THE CENTRAL/SOUTHERN ROCKIES UPPER RIDGE STILL REMAINS UNCLEAR. HOWEVER...CURRENT THINKING IS THAT AT LEAST ISOLATED/WIDELY SCATTERED STRONGER THUNDERSTORMS SHOULD DEVELOP SATURDAY AFTERNOON/EARLY EVENING MAINLY IN VICINITY A NORTH-SOUTH SURFACE TROUGH. ALTHOUGH LOW/MID-TROPOSPHERIC WINDS WILL GENERALLY BE WEAK...AMPLE VEERING WITH HEIGHT AND STRONG HIGH-LEVEL NORTHWESTERLY WINDS WILL SUPPORT SOME SUPERCELLS SATURDAY LATE AFTERNOON/EVENING IN THE PRESENCE OF MODERATE /2000+ J PER KG/ MLCAPE. IT IS CONCEIVABLE THAT ONE OR MORE SOUTH-SOUTHEASTWARD-MOVING MCS/S COULD EVOLVE SATURDAY EVENING WITH AID OF A NOCTURNALLY STRENGTHENING LOW-LEVEL JET. ADDITIONAL PORTIONS OF THE REGION...POTENTIALLY INCLUDING MORE OF WESTERN KS AND PARTS OF THE TX PANHANDLE/WESTERN OK...COULD WARRANT A SLIGHT RISK UPGRADE IN THE DAY 1 TIME FRAME PENDING A GREATER CONFIDENCE IN STORM COVERAGE/SUSTENANCE IN AN ENVIRONMENT OTHERWISE RELATIVELY FAVORABLE FOR ORGANIZED STORM MODES. ...MT/ND... RELATED TO THE SYNOPSIS-DESCRIBED TROUGH AMPLIFICATION...UPPER HEIGHT FALLS WILL BEGIN TO SPREAD SOUTH OF THE INTERNATIONAL BORDER BY SATURDAY NIGHT. A SURFACE TRIPLE POINT WILL BECOME INCREASINGLY ESTABLISHED ACROSS THE NORTHERN HIGH PLAINS SATURDAY AFTERNOON/EVENING VIA AN EASTWARD-MOVING FRONTAL WAVE...SHARPENING PRE-FRONTAL TROUGH...AND SOUTHEASTWARD-MOVING FRONT ACROSS MT/WESTERN ND. AT LEAST ISOLATED STRONG/SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS COULD DEVELOP/MOVE SOUTHEASTWARD INTO THE REGION SATURDAY AFTERNOON/EVENING...WITH SEVERE HAIL/LOCALLY DAMAGING WINDS A POSSIBILITY. PARTS OF NORTHEAST MT INTO ND COULD WARRANT AN UPGRADE TO SLIGHT RISK IN THE DAY 1 PERIOD. ...LOWER MS RIVER VALLEY/SOUTHEAST STATES... WEAK HEIGHT FALLS AND A BELT OF MODERATELY STRONG/SEMI-COOL CYCLONIC FLOW ALOFT WILL LARGELY COINCIDE WITH AN EFFECTIVE FRONTAL ZONE REGULATED BY PRIOR CONVECTIVE OUTFLOWS/DIFFERENTIAL HEATING. A GRADUAL INCREASE/INTENSIFICATION OF EAST-SOUTHEASTWARD-MOVING THUNDERSTORMS SEEMS PROBABLE BY MIDDAY/EARLY AFTERNOON SATURDAY. SOME SEMI-ORGANIZED CLUSTERS MAY EVOLVE...WITH LOCALLY DAMAGING WINDS BEING THE PRIMARY CONCERN SATURDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH EARLY/MID-EVENING. ...GREAT BASIN... A BELT OF MODESTLY STRONGER SOUTHERLY MID/HIGH-LEVEL WINDS WILL OVERSPREAD THE REGION IN CONJUNCTION WITH A WEAKENING UPPER RIDGE. A DIURNALLY HEATED/WELL-MIXED BOUNDARY LAYER WILL CONTRIBUTE TO THE DEVELOPMENT/INTENSIFICATION OF THUNDERSTORMS SATURDAY AFTERNOON/EARLY EVENING MOSTLY ACROSS NV. DOWNBURSTS AND POSSIBLY SOME HAIL /MOSTLY SUB-SEVERE/ CAN BE EXPECTED WITH THE STRONGER STORMS.

Severe Threat Sunday

...SUMMARY... THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING SEVERE WIND AND HAIL ARE EXPECTED SUNDAY ACROSS PARTS OF NEBRASKA...SOUTH DAKOTA AND ADJACENT PORTIONS OF SOUTHWESTERN MINNESOTA. ...SYNOPSIS... LITTLE CHANGE TO THE GENERAL UPPER FLOW PATTERN APPEARS LIKELY FROM SATURDAY INTO SUNDAY. SUBTROPICAL RIDGING APPEARS LIKELY TO REMAIN SOMEWHAT SUPPRESSED...BUT THE STRONGER MID-LATITUDE WESTERLIES ARE EXPECTED TO REMAIN CONFINED TO THE NORTHERN TIER OF THE U.S...NORTHWARD. WITHIN THIS REGIME A POSITIVELY TILTED TROUGH IS FORECAST TO CONTINUE PROGRESSING EASTWARD ACROSS THE CENTRAL CANADIAN PROVINCES. ON ITS TRAILING SOUTHWESTERN FLANK...A SMALLER SCALE PERTURBATION MAY DIG ACROSS THE INTERNATIONAL BORDER INTO THE NORTHERN PLAINS BY THE END OF THE PERIOD. AN ASSOCIATED COLD FRONT LIKELY WILL ADVANCE SOUTHWARD TO THE LEE OF THE NORTHERN AND CENTRAL ROCKIES...AND EASTWARD ACROSS THE NORTHERN PLAINS...INTO PORTIONS OF THE UPPER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY AND MID MISSOURI VALLEY BY 12Z MONDAY. A CORRIDOR OF STRONG DESTABILIZATION AHEAD OF THIS FRONT IS EXPECTED TO PROVIDE THE FOCUS FOR THE PRIMARY CONVECTIVE POTENTIAL SUNDAY AFTERNOON INTO SUNDAY EVENING. THIS INCLUDES THE RISK FOR SEVERE STORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING LARGE HAIL AND POTENTIALLY DAMAGING WIND GUSTS. ...NORTH CENTRAL PLAINS INTO UPPER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY... DUE TO THE ORIENTATION OF THE UPPER TROUGH...MODELS ARE SUGGESTIVE THAT PRE-FRONTAL MID/UPPER FLOW AND DEEP LAYER SHEAR MAY NOT BECOME PARTICULARLY STRONG. HOWEVER...STEEPENING MID-LEVEL LAPSE RATES ASSOCIATED WITH THE NORTHEASTWARD ADVECTION OF VERY WARM ELEVATED MIXED LAYER AIR...COUPLED WITH PRE-FRONTAL BOUNDARY LAYER MOISTENING...ARE EXPECTED TO CONTRIBUTE TO STRONG DESTABILIZATION WITH DAYTIME HEATING. BY LATE AFTERNOON...MIXED LAYER CAPE OF 2000-3000+ J/KG APPEARS LIKELY...PARTICULARLY ACROSS CENTRAL AND NORTHERN NEBRASKA...AND SOUTHERN/EASTERN SOUTH DAKOTA INTO ADJACENT AREAS OF MINNESOTA. WITH THE ONSET OF MID-LEVEL HEIGHT FALLS AND COOLING...INHIBITION IS EXPECTED TO WEAKEN SUFFICIENTLY TO SUPPORT THE INITIATION OF VIGOROUS STORM DEVELOPMENT ACROSS PARTS OF THE NORTHERN NEBRASKA PANHANDLE INTO SOUTHWEST AND CENTRAL SOUTH DAKOTA. THERMODYNAMIC PROFILES ARE EXPECTED TO BE CONDUCIVE TO SEVERE WIND GUSTS AND HAIL IN STRONGER ACTIVITY AS IT SPREADS EASTWARD. STORMS MAY ALSO DEVELOP NORTHEASTWARD ALONG/AHEAD OF THE FRONT INTO WEST CENTRAL...PERHAPS NORTHERN...MINNESOTA...BY EARLY EVENING. HOWEVER...STRONGER LOW-LEVEL WARM ADVECTION MAY SUPPORT MORE PROMINENT CONVECTIVE DEVELOPMENT ACROSS THE REMAINDER OF SOUTHERN SOUTH DAKOTA AND NORTHERN NEBRASKA...WHERE A CONSOLIDATING/STRENGTHENING SURFACE COLD POOL MAY EMERGE WITH AN EVOLVING CLUSTER OF STORMS.


_____________________________________

Smoky Sun

Thanks to Jackie Koch for the picture below taken in northern Minnesota Thursday evening. Thanks to several Canadian wildfires, smoke continues to spill south into the Upper Midwest. This may make for some spectacular sunrises/sunsets through the weekend!

Smoke Analysis: 7am SATURDAY

The image below from NOAA suggests the smoke analysis for 7AM Saturday. Note how widespread the smoke appears to be across the Upper Midwest. Saturday's sunrise and sunset will appear a little more 'smoky' than what Sunday's sunrise/sunset will be.


__________________________________________

Canadian Fires and Smoke Analysis

Here's an interesting view of how widespread the wildfires (red dots) are across Canada and Alaska. The grey plumes are areas of smoke, which stretch all the way to the Northeast!

Visible Satellite of Smoke

Here's a visible satellite image of smoke across the Northwest Territories and Canada.

Canada is reeling from an early fire season this year as dozens of fires ravage at least three provinces of the country. This natural-color satellite image was collected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard the Terra satellite on July 1, 2015. Actively burning areas, detected by MODIS’s thermal bands, are outlined in red.  NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team. Caption: NASA/Goddard, Lynn Jenner

See the full report from NASA HERE:


_________________________________

Anchorage, AK Lowest Seasonal Snowfall on Record

Part of the reason for all the wildfires in Alaska is because of the lack of snow this season. Take a look at the new record in Anchorage, AK.

It's official! The 2014-2015 snow season came to a conclusion. Anchorage officially set a record for its lowest seasonal snowfall on record with 25.1" of snow, breaking the previous record of 30.4" in 1957-58.

See more from the National Weather Service HERE:

Thanks for checking in and have a great weekend! Don't forget to follow me on Twitter @TNelsonWX