Visible Satellite on Monday

Here's the visible satellite from Monday, which shows a fairly stubborn batch of clouds that floated across the state through the day. This was in association with a cold front that will be responsible for cooler temperatures through midweek. 

UPDATE: Earliest Minnesota Tornado on Record
A new damage survey from the Twin Cities National Weather Service revealed another tornado touched down on March 6th, 2017 in Bricelyn, MN located in Faribault county. Interestingly, this tornado becomes the earliest Minnesota tornado on record as it touched down at 5:04PM whereas the other 2 tornadoes that day touched down a little after 5:30PM. Note that this tornado was also rated an EF-1 with winds up to 90MPH.
Radar Loop: March 6th, 2016
Here's a replay of the radar from March 6th, 2016 as severe thunderstorms with large hail, damaging winds and tornadoes blew through blew through the state. These thunderstorms produced 3 tornadoes that become the earliest Minnesota tornadoes on record, beating the previous earliest tornado on record set on March 18th, 1968.
Upcoming Severe Threats

According to NOAA's SPC, there is a risk for severe weather across the southern part of the country on Friday and Saturday. Stay tuned for more updates.

Stormy Friday in the Southern Plains

The extended forecast suggests a fairly stormy Friday and Saturday across the Southern Plains. Strong to severe thunderstorms will be possible along with locally heavy rain.

Southern Rainfall Potential

As our next storm system blows through the Southern US with strong to severe thunderstorms Friday & Saturday, heavy rainfall will also be possible. The extended forecast suggests 1" to nearly 3" of rain across parts of the region. 


2017 PRELIMINARY Tornado Count

According to NOAA's SPC, the PRELIMINARY tornado count for 2017 is at 369 (thru March 19). Note that this is the most (thru March 19th) since 2008 when nearly 500 tornadoes reported through that time frame. The 2005-2015 average through that time period is 175. 


World Meteorological Day - 23 March 2017
Understanding Clouds is the theme of World Meteorological Day 2017 to highlight the enormous importance of clouds for weather climate and water. Clouds are central to weather observations and forecasts. Clouds are one of the key uncertainties in the study of climate change:  we need to better understand how clouds affect the climate and how a changing climate will affect clouds. Clouds play a critical role in the water cycle and shaping the global distribution of water resources. 

Sunshine Fire in Boulder Colorado
Good news from Boulder Colorado where fire crews had the Sunshine Fire nearly completely contained as of midday Monday. Here's a excerpt from about the fire: Residents evacuated Sunday are being allowed to return home today after firefighters have made "great progress" today on fully containing the Sunshine Fire west of Boulder. The fire west of Boulder is at 80 percent containment as of noon, according to the Boulder Office of Emergency Management. The fire was last estimated at 74 acres Monday after being at 62 acres Sunday. Boulder County Cmdr. Mike Wagner said the high winds that fire crews were fearing overnight never materialized, and as a result firefighters are "comfortable" with where the fire is. Sunshine Canyon is still closed to non-residents, but residents with identification were being allowed back in as of 9:30 a.m. The fire prompted mandatory evacuations for 426 homes and pre-evacuation notices for another 836 homes. Wagner said crews hope to reach full containment on the fire by the end of the day but said that will depend on the weather.
(A slurry bomber drops on the Sunshine Fire west of Boulder on Sunday Paul Aiken Staff Photographer March 19 2017)

Precipitation Continues in the Western US This Week
Here's the weather outlook from Tuesday to Saturday, which shows several round of precipitation working into the Western US. Note that the higher elevations will be dealing with snow, while heavy rainfall will be possible at the lower eleavations. 
  Western Precipitation Potential
Here's a look at the precipitation potential through the early weekend, which shows as much 4" to 8"+ liquid! There certainly could be areas of flooding with snow melt and as much precipitation as there is expected to be.


High Temperatures From Average Tuesday

Here's a look at high temperatures from average on Tuesday. Note that while temperatures across the Midwest and High Plains look to chill to below average levels, temperatures across the southern US look to be as much as 15F to 20F+ above average! With that said, more record highs will be possible again Tuesday!

Record Warmth Continues...

With temperatures running nearly 20F+ above average across the Southern Plains, record high temperatures may be possible there. Take a look at the image below, which show the potential record highs (circled numbers) that could be set on Tuesday.

Chilly breeze Tuseday. Soggy storm system late week
By Todd Nelson, filling in for Douglas.

I've always been a fan of March weather. Growing up in Minnesota, high school tournament time always meant there was going to be a big wet sloppy snow storm. Note that a fairly large snow event unfolded across the southern part of the state a little more than a week ago, but the Twin Cities got missed by the heaviest once again. Seems par for the course as we are nearly 18 inches below normal snowfall for the season! A persistent storm track to our south has allowed Rochester to pick up almost 53 inches of snow this season, which is nearly 20 inches more than what the Twin Cities has seen. Unreal.

The extended forecast looks active, but the late week storm system will be more of a rain maker with some spots in southern MN seeing up to 1 inch of rain by Friday night. The last week of March may feature yet another storm system, but temperatures look mild enough for rain once again.

I officially put away the snow blower last weekend, so it's inevitable that we'll get dumped on in April, right? I think my NCAA bracket has better odds.

Extended Forecast:

TUESDAY: Cooler breeze. More PM sun. Winds: N 5-10. High: 39.

TUESDAY NIGHT: Mostly clear and chilly. Winds: N 5-10. Low: 18.

WEDNESDAY: Dry. Near average temperatures. Winds: SE 10-15. High: 44.

THURSDAY: Mostly cloudy. Rain showers late. Winds: SSE 10-20. Wake-up: 28. High: 48.

FRIDAY: Windy. Steady rain in southern Minnesota. Winds: N 15-25. Wake-up: 37. High: 50.

SATURDAY: Drier. Lingering clouds. Winds: ENE 10-15. Wake-up: 32. High: 47.

SUNDAY: Partly sunny. Nothing rough. Winds: SE 5-15. Wake-up: 29. High: 48.

MONDAY: Mostly cloudy. A few spotty showers. Winds: SE 5-15. Wake-up: 35. High: 50

This Day in Weather History
March 21st

1953: A tornado hits the northern St. Cloud area. High winds from thunderstorms are experienced from Martin to Stearns County.

Average High/Low for Minneapolis
March 21st

Average High: 44F (Record: 76F set in 1938)
Average: Low: 26F (Record: -8F set in 1965)

*Record Snowfall: 3.9" set in 2008

Sunrise Sunset Times For Minneapolis
March 21st

Sunrise: 7:14am
Sunset: 7:27pm

*Daylight Gained Since Yesterday: ~3 minutes & 9 seconds
*Daylight Gained Since Winter Solstice (December 21st): ~3 hours & 27 minutes


Moon Phase for March 21st at Midnight
1.6 Days After Last Quarter


Weather Outlook For Tuesday

High temperatures on Tuesday will be quite a bit cooler than they were over the past few days. Note that readings will be in the 20s and 30s across the state, which will be nearly 5F to 10F+ below average. With a wind out of the north, temperatures across the northern part of teh state could feel more like the 10s around midday. 

Weather Outlook For Tuesday

Winds won't be too terribly strong on Tuesday, but sustained winds of 10-15mph with gusts nearing 20mph will certainly make it feel a little chilly.

 Weather Outlook For Tuesday

Weather conditions look pretty quiet around the state on Tuesday in the wake of a cold front that will keep much of the precipitation south of us through midweek. Note that much of the state will see some sunshine on Tuesday!

Late Week Storm System
Weather conditions later this week will be somewhat active as a storm system blows through. Here's a quick glimpse of what weather conditions could be like Thursday through Saturday. Note that the primary precipitation type appears to be rain and it appears that the heaviest will be found across southern MN.
Precipitation Potential
Here's the precipitation potential through AM Sunday, which shows some fairly widespread 1"+ rainfall tallies across southern MN, including the Twin Cities.
Extended Temperature Outlook for Minneapolis

Here's the temperature outlook through April 5th, which shows temperatures leveling off a bit through the end of the week with temperatures in the low to mid 40s. However, note that the extended forecast through the end of the month suggests temperatures warming to near 60F once again!


8 to 14 Day Temperature Outlook

According to NOAA's CPC, the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook suggests equal chances of above and below normal temperatures from March 30th - April 3rd with warmer than average temperatures settling in across Midwest once again.


Temperature Outlook

Here's the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook, which takes us through early April. Note that warmer than average temperatures look to settle in from the Great Lakes to the Gulf Coast States. Lingering cooler than avg. temps hang on across the Northern New England States and in California.


 National Weather Outlook

Here's the national weather outlook through the middle part of the week and note how much more active things look to be getting across the Western half of the country. This next bigger surge of Pacific moisture will not only bring copious amounts of liquid to the Western US, but it will also bring thunderstorms and heavier rain chances to the Central US on Friday and Saturday.

5 Day Precipitation Forecast

According to NOAA's WPC, the 5 day precipitation forecast suggests widespread 3" to 6"+ precipitation amounts across parts of the Western US with some of the heaviest tallies in the higher elevations. Later this week, a storm system will move into the Central US with some 1" to 2"+ rainfall tallies.


Snowfall Potential

Here's the snowfall potential over the next several days, which shows some accumulations across parts of the Northeast and in the Western mountains, but there doesn't appear to be any major snow event unfolding across the Lower 48. The heaviest appears to be farther north in Canada.

"Climate Change As An Issue Of National Security"
"Defense Secretary James Mattis called climate change a national security threat. Retired Brig. Gen. Gerald Galloway talks about how the Pentagon will manage challenges presented by climate change. Last week, ProPublica published excerpts of a testimony by Defense Secretary James Mattis calling climate change a national security threat. In his written statements given in January to the Senate Armed Services Committee, Mattis says climate change is, quote, "impacting stability in areas of the world where our troops are operating today." Now questions are circulating about how the Pentagon will manage these challenges presented by climate change, especially as some members of the Trump administration and the president himself have denied its impact. With us to discuss this growing topic is Brigadier General Gerald Galloway from the Center for Climate and Security. He's also a professor of engineering at the University of Maryland. Welcome, sir."


"Half of U.S. doctors alarmed about health effects of climate change"

About half the nation’s physicians — more than 400,000 doctors — officially sounded the medical alarm on climate change Wednesday and the effect it’s having on their patients. Among the health care providers present for the launch of the Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health in Washington, D.C., were Hardin physicians Lori and Rob Byron. Rob Byron, an internist retired from the Indian Health Service who nowadays divides his time between St. Vincent Healthcare in Billings and Bighorn Valley Health Center in Hardin, spoke during the event as part of a six-member panel announcing the new movement. During his brief remarks, Byron — filling in for another presenter whose flight was cancelled by a snowstorm — said a “marked increase” in Montana wildfires has led him to urge his patients suffering such diseases as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) to spend more time indoors during summer and early fall months.

See more from BillingsGazette HERE:


"Doctors Warn Climate Change Threatens Public Health"

"Physicians are noticing an influx of patients whose illnesses are directly or indirectly related to global warming. Growing up in southwestern Pennsylvania, Patrice Tomcik had never heard of Lyme disease — an infectious, flu-like illness transmitted by ticks. But in the last few years, five of her friends have caught it, she's had to have her dog vaccinated and she regularly finds herself pulling ticks off her children. It can be disconcerting, she said, having to worry about an illness that she had never been exposed to in the past. "It's getting warmer, so the season for ticks is lasting longer," said Tomcik, a field consultant with Moms Clean Air Force. "There are so many more of them, and they just don't die off. It's a big issue here in Pennsylvania, because we have so much wood. Our family has 29 acres of land out in the woods, and I'm picking ticks off my dog and my kids like I've never seen before.""
(Credit: Santiago Urquijo Getty Images)

"SpaceX’s Dragon supply carrier wraps up 10th mission to space station"
SpaceX’s Dragon cargo craft ended a four-week mission Sunday with a parachute-assisted splashdown in the Pacific Ocean, returning from the International Space Station with more than 3,600 pounds of cargo, blood and urine samples, and specimens from a rodent research experiment aimed at helping patients with catastrophic bone injuries and osteoporosis. Flying northwest to southeast over the Pacific Ocean, the 12-foot-wide (3.7-meter) automated spaceship streaked through the upper atmosphere, its carbon ablative heat shield weathering temperatures up to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,650 degrees Celsius). Two drogue parachutes deployed to stabilize the descending ship, then three orange and white main parachutes, each stretching 116 feet (35 meters) in diameter, unfurled to slow the spacecraft to a gentle splashdown speed.
(File photo of a SpaceX Dragon supply ship splashing down in the Pacific Ocean at the end of a previous mission. Credit: SpaceX)
"Climate change is certainly causing more powerful storms"
Even blizzards show that climate change is a very serious problem. From the moment a powerful blizzard hit the northeastern United States — only a few weeks after comfortable, spring-like weather — the questions about climate change’s impact have been asked. According to leading scientists, we bear some responsibility for the storm, which covered much of the inland areas with up to two feet of snow. And President Donald Trump is definitely not helping matters. “There is a connection between global warming and the increased frequency of heavy snowstorms,” said James Hansen, a professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia University. “One factor is the increased amount of water vapor that the atmosphere holds in a warmer world.” In the late 1980s, Hansen testified that climate change — and the warming of the atmosphere — leads to “greater heat waves and stronger droughts” but more rain and floods in areas. “The ‘100-year flood’ now occurs more often than once a century,” Hansen said.
(People shovel a sidewalk on a Brooklyn street on March 14, 2017 (Credit: Getty/Spencer Platt))
"As glaciers melt, project seeks to preserve ice cores showing climate history"
"Glacier ice contains traces of gas, chemicals and dust. Analyzed in the lab, this is a treasure trove of data on past changes in the climate and environment, including rainfall trends, forest fires, atmospheric temperatures, levels of greenhouse gases and chemical pollutants. They provide a crucial benchmark for understanding how our climate is mutating. “The glaciers … hold the memory of former climates and help to predict future environmental changes,” said the Institute of Research for Development (IRD), another French mission member. But time is running out."

See more from HERE:

(The snow-covered summit of Mount Illimani is seen from La Paz Golf Club in the Bolivian capital, with indigenous Aymara women in the foreground, in November 2008. | AFP-JIJI)


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Happy Spring! Quiet start, steady rain late week

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Sun fades Wednesday. Last dry day for a while