Last Month of Meteorological Summer
Wednesday marks the first day of August and the start of the last full month of meteorological summer. Puffy clouds may give way to a few showers and storms as a cool front slides through. Thursday will feel a touch like September as temperatures dip into the 70s. 

High Temps Wednesday

A cool front will scoot through the state on Wednesday, which will bring scattered showers and storms to the region. Note that temps won't be all that warm across the northern part of the state with highs not even making it into the 70s. Highs will struggle to get to 80F even in the Twin Cities, which will be nearly 5F below average for the first day of August.
Typical Late July Weather
Thanks to the National Weather Service out of the Twin Cities for the graphic below, which precipitation chances and timing as we head through the day Wednesday. Note that precipitation chances will be greatest across the northern and northeastern part of the state early in the morning, while decrease quite a bit later in the day and should be confined to the southern/southeastern part of the state.
Weather Outlook
Here's a look at the weather as we head through the 2nd half of the week. Wednesday look to bring our best statewide rain chance this week as a cool front pushes through the region. Note that rain chances look greater across the northern part of the state early Wednesday, but diminish a bit through the day as it moves south. Thursday looks dry, but rain/thunder chances look to increase a bit as we head into the weekend.
Rainfall Potential
The NWS NDFD rainfall potential through PM Thursday suggests a fairly insignificant rain chance across the state as our cool front moves through the region on Wednesday. The heaviest rain looks to fall across the Arrowhead with some 0.25" to 0.50" tallies, while the rest of the state may be lucky to see anything more substantial than that.
MARGINAL Severe Risk on Wednesday
According to NOAA's SPC, there is a MARGINAL severe risk on Wednesday across portions of southern Minnesota and into central Wisconsin as our cool front slides through. Some of the storms later in the day could get a little vigorous. Keep that in mind if you have any plans midweek. 
Extended Temperature Outlook
The extended forecast through mid August suggests much warmer weather moving in with highs approaching 90F several days by the first weekend of the month and beyond. The GEFS forecast (top image) seems a little warmer than the ECMWF (bottom image), but both show warmer into August... get the ACs ready.

Is a Warming Climate Creating More Home Runs?
By Paul Douglas

Is a warming climate resulting in more home runs? Warmer, wetter air is less dense - meaning a ball can (in theory) travel farther than in cooler, drier air.

MLB stats show a record 6,105 home runs in 2017, smashing the previous record of 5,693 home runs set in 2000, at the height of the steroid era. Several minor league teams are already storing baseballs in humidors to combat the effects of higher dew points. This spring Major League Baseball officials told teams to store their baseballs in enclosed, air-conditioned rooms. Frankly, that's where I'd like to hang out too.

After a run of relatively comfortable weather the past few weeks we're heading into a hotter, stickier pattern again. We should hit 90F Friday; a possible run of 90-degree days next week. Great news, if you like your weather hot & sweaty.

A passing T-shower is possible today; more widespread storms Saturday and Saturday night. Sunday appears to be the sunnier, drier day of the weekend right now.

Meanwhile an apocalyptic fire burns near Redding, California, with resources from Wisconsin and South Dakota.

Extended Forecast

WEDNESDAY: Passing shower, T-storm. Winds: W 7-12. High: 78.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT: Chance of storms early, then partly cloudy. Winds: SW 5-10. Low: 56.

THURSDAY: Touch of September, comfortably sunny. Winds: E 5-10. High: 77.

FRIDAY: Heat spike. Hot and sweaty again. Winds: S 10-15. Wake-up: 62. High: 90.

SATURDAY: Sweaty, showers and T-storms likely. Winds: S 8-13. Wake-up: 71. High: 88.

SUNDAY: Wet start, then warm sunshine. Winds: SW 8-13. Wake-up: 69. High: 89.

MONDAY: Another round of heavy T-storms. Winds: NW 5-10. Wake-up: 68. High: 84.

TUESDAY: Sunny and less humid. Winds: NW 7-12. Wake-up: 65. High: 86.

This Day in Weather History
August 1st

1955: A thunderstorm in Becker County dumps a foot of rain at Callaway.

Average High/Low for Minneapolis
August 1st

Average High: 83F (Record: 101F set in 1988)
Average Low: 64F (Record: 49F set in 1962)

Record Rainfall: 2.03" set in 1975
Record Snowfall: NONE

Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
August 1st

Sunrise: 5:59am
Sunset: 8:39pm

Hours of Daylight: ~14 hours & 41 minutes

Daylight LOST since yesterday: ~2 minutes & 23 seconds
Daylight LOST since summer solstice (June 21st): 56 Minutes

Moon Phase for August 1st at Midnight
2.5 Days Before Last Quarter


National Weather Outlook: Wednesday
High temps on Wednesday won't be too bad across the eastern two-thirds of the nation with highs at or slightly below normal. However, warmer than average temps will continue in the Western US, but it won't be as hot as it was earlier this week for places like Seattle and Portland.
Large Wildfires
According to Inciweb, there are a number of large wildfires ongoing across the Western US. Unfortunately, the Carr Fire near Redding, CA has led to at least 6 fatalities and has consumed nearly 104,000 acres - larger than the size of Denver, CO. Unfortunately, the fire is only 23% contained and has destroyed nearly 1,100 structures. This is now the 7th most devastating fire in California history and is still threatening nearly 4,000 structures.  

Praedictix Briefing: Tuesday, July 31st, 2018

  • Hot, dry and windy weather continues to fuel several Deadly wildfires across the state of California.
  • The Carr Fire near Redding, California has burned nearly 104,000 acres - bigger than Denver, Colorado - and is only 23% contained. It becomes the 7th most destructive in the state's history burning more than 1,100 structures and has killed 6 people. More than 4,000 structures remain threatened with numerous evacuations and road closures still in progress.
  • The Mendocino Complex Fire near Ukiah, California, consist of 2 separate fires - Ranch Fire and River Fire - and have burned a combined total of nearly 70,000 acres and are only 5% contained. The 2 fires are threatening a total more than 10,000 structures and could to merge into 1 even larger mega-blaze.
  • The Ferguson Fire near Yosemite National Park has now consumed more than 57,000 acres and is 30% contained.
  • The Cranston Fire near Idyllwild, California has grown to more than 13,000 acres and is 82% contained.

California Wildfires. Hot, dry and windy weather continues to fuel several wildfires across the state, making firefighting efforts extremely difficult. At least 8 people have died in these fires, including fire fighters as they've battled the flames. The most destructive fire is the Carr Fire near Redding, CA, which has become the 7th most destructive wildfire in the state's history. Thousands of fire fighters are working on multiple different blazes across the state and are working in extremely difficult conditions, including steep and rugged terrain. Little progress is being made on some of the bigger fires and the Mendocino Complex Fire near Ukiah, consisting of 2 separate fires, is threatening more than 10,000 structures and could potentially merge into 1 mega-blaze later this week.

Carr Fire. The Carr Fire burning near Redding, California has become the 7th most destructive wildfire in the state's history burning more than 1,100 acres and has killed 6 people, including 2 firefighter fatalities. The fire has burned nearly 110,000 acres - an area larger than the size of Denver, Colorado - and is only 27% contained. Nearly 3,600 fire personnel are working on the blaze, but more than 2,400 structures still remain threatened. CalFire has more on the incident, including the latest on mandatory evacuation orders and road closures. 

Mendocino Complex. The Mendocino Complex consists of 2 separate fires - the River Fire and the Ranch Fire east of Ukiah, CA. Combined, these 2 fires have consumed more nearly 70,000 and are still growing, threatening more than 10,000 structures. Both fires are only 5% contained and there is concern that they could merge into 1 even larger mega-blaze. Nearly 2,000 fire personnel are working on these fires, but weather conditions are unfavorable for swift and significant containment. CalFire has more on the Ranch Fire and River Fire, including more on the mandatory evacuations and road closures.

Ferguson Fire. According to Inciweb, the Ferguson Fire burning near Yosemite National Park has consumed more than 57,000 acres and is 33% contained. Little improvement was made since yesterday, but steep and rugged terrain is making it very difficult for the more than 3,600 fire personnel to work effectively. An Arrowhead hotshot - firefighter - was killed in the Ferguson Fire Sunday morning battling the massive blaze raising the death toll to 8 in fire related deaths as more than a dozen wildfires rage across the state. Inciweb has more on the incident, including mandatory evacuations and road closures.

Cranston Fire. The Cranston fire - burning nearly Idyllwild - has consumed more than 13,000 acres and is now 82% contained. The good news is that firefighters are making good progress on this fire and estimated containment date is expected by August 9th. With that said, there are still a number of mandatory evacuations and road closures still in place. Inciweb has more on the fire.

Air Quality Concern. A recent NOAA satellite image shows California shrouded in smoke, which is causing dangerous air quality concerns across a wide area. Exposure to particle pollution can burning eyes, runny nose and other serious health problems, including aggravated lung disease, asthma attacks, acute bronchitis and an increase risk of respiratory infections. Limit outdoor activities and keep children indoors if it is smoky. Please follow medical advice if you have a heart or lung condition.

Critical Fire Weather Concerns. Critical fire weather concerns are in place across the Washington and Oregon state line, where hot, dry and windy weather could create dangerous conditions for rapid fire growth if fires develop in these areas today. 

Red Flag Warning. Fire weather concerns remain and critical and elevated levels in many areas across the Western US. For that reason, the National Weather Service has issued Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches as weather conditions will remain favorable for dangerous and rapid fire growth if wildfires start in these areas.

Todd Nelson, Meteorologist, Praedictix

"Carr Fire in California becomes 7th most destructive fire in state history"
"The catastrophic Carr fire blazed a path of devastation, becoming the 7th most destructive fire in California history as it burned more than 1,100 structures and left six people dead. The fire, which started more than a week ago, has burned 103,772 acres -- scorching an area bigger than the size of Denver. The Carr fire is burning so large and intensely that it created its own localized weather system, making it difficult for experts to predict which way the blaze will spread. Wildfires like this can get so hot they make pyrocumulus clouds, formations that look like mushroom clouds and can be seen for miles.Smoke from the massive blaze and another California fire burning near Yosemite National Park, called the Ferguson Fire, could be seen in satellite images."
"#CarrFire – Satellite Shows California Shrouded in Smoke"
NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this natural color image of the fires in California and the resultant smoke that has shrouded the state and swept eastward as far as Salt Lake City and still moving. Dangerous and deadly fires have broken out across the state including the Carr fire inferno and the long-standing Ferguson fire near Yosemite National Park as well as the Mendocino Complex north of Santa Rosa. The Carr fire located near Redding, California has exploded over the week from its inception.  Now at 98,724 acres and is 20% contained.  Six people have died as a result of this deadly fire and the Carr fire has also destroyed 723 residences, 3 commercial buildings, and 240 outbuildings with over 5,000 more structures in danger. There are a staggering number of mandatory evacuations that can be found at the Shasta County Sheriff’s website.  Over 3,300 firefighters are engaged in this effort. Weather forecasts are not favorable for fighting this or any of the other fires in California. The hot, dry weather that contributed to the deadly California firestorm shows no sign of letting up into the first part of August.

Atlantic Outlook

According to NOAA's National Hurricane Center, weather conditions in the Atlantic basin remain rather quiet with no tropical cyclones expected over the next 5 days.
Eastern Pacific Outlook
The NHC is watching 2 different waves of energy in the Eastern Pacific. One has a High chance of tropical formation, while the other has a low chance of tropical formation over the next 5 days.
Tropical Climatology
This is neat map from NOAA's NHC, which shows where we typically see tropical cyclones develop in the early part of August. Note that in the Atlantic, we start seeing more activity in the Central Atlantic and near the Cape Verge Islands off the western tip of Africa.
Average Peak of Atlantic Hurricane Season

According to NOAA, the average peak of the Atlantic Hurricane Season is on September 10th. Note that activity (on average) in late June and early July remains pretty tame. Things really start to heat up in August and September though!

2018 Lightning Fatalities - FIFTEEN

Did you know that lightning ranks as one of the top weather related killers in the U.S.? An average of nearly 50 people are killed each year in the United States and so far this year, 15 people have died from lightning; 12 have been males and only 3 have been females. Interestingly, from 2008-2017, 232 males have died, while only 64 females have died.

See Lightning Safety Tips From NOAA HERE:

Average Tornadoes in August By State

Here's the average number of tornadoes during the month of August by state. Florida sees the most with 7, while Minnesota averages 5 tornadoes. During the dog days of Summer, the tornado count typically fades across the nation.

3-7 Day Hazard Forecast

1.) Heavy rain across portions of the Great Lakes, the Upper Mississippi Valley, and the Northern Plains, Sat-Mon, Aug 4-Aug 6.
2.) Heavy rain across portions of the Mid-Atlantic, the Northeast, and the Central Appalachians, Fri-Sat, Aug 3-Aug 4.
3.) Heavy rain across portions of the Alaska Panhandle and mainland Alaska, Sun-Mon, Aug 5-Aug 6.
Flooding possible across portions of the Northeast, the Central Appalachians, the Mid-Atlantic, the Southeast, the Great Lakes, and the Ohio Valley.
4.) Excessive heat across portions of the Plains, the Mississippi Valley, the Tennessee Valley, and the Ohio Valley, Mon-Tue, Aug 6-Aug 7.
5.) Enhanced wildfire risk across northern portions of the interior West, Fri, Aug 3.
Slight risk of heavy precipitation for portions of the Pacific Northwest and the Northern Great Basin, Wed-Thu, Aug 8-Aug 9.
6.) Slight risk of heavy precipitation for portions of the Central and Southern Plains, the Central and Southern Rockies, the Central Great Basin, and the Southwest, Wed-Mon, Aug 8-Aug 13.
7.) Slight risk of heavy precipitation for portions of the Great Lakes, the Mid-Atlantic, the Northeast, the Central Appalachians, and the Ohio Valley, Wed-Fri, Aug 8-Aug 10.
8.) Slight risk of excessive heat for portions of the Plains, the Mississippi Valley, the Tennessee Valley, the Great Lakes, and the Ohio Valley, Wed-Sat, Aug 8-Aug 11.
9.) Moderate risk of excessive heat for portions of the Plains, the Mississippi Valley, the Tennessee Valley, and the Ohio Valley, Wed-Thu, Aug 8-Aug 9.
10.) Severe Drought across the Central and Southern Plains, the Central and Southern Rockies, the Lower and Middle Mississippi Valley, the Great Basin, California, the Pacific Northwest, and the Southwest.


 Temperature Anomaly on Tuesday

The temperature anomaly across North America on Tuesday showed temperatures well above average across the Western US and Western Canada. while, much of the Central US was dealing with cooler than average temps, which at this time of the year is pretty comfortable.

Temperature Trend

Here's the temperature anomaly as we head into the first part of August. Note the blue colors or cooler than average temperatures will continue across much of the Central US. These cooler than average temperatures will be fairly comfortable weather across those areas. However, warmer than average temperatures look to return to the Upper Midwest as we head closer to the first weekend of August.

Weather Outlook Ahead

The weather loop below shows active weather continuing in the Eastern US with areas of locally heavy rain and possibly a few strong to severe storms. Spotty storms will be possible across the Intermountain West and in the Southwest due to monsoon storms.


7 Day Precipitation Outlook

According to NOAA's WPC, the 7-day precipitation outlook suggests areas of heavy rain across the Eastern US with several inches of rain possible as we head into the first part of August. In fact, Flash Flood Watches have been posted across parts of the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic States through Thursday for the potential of 2" to 4" of rain. There also appears to be another blob of heavier rain across the Southwest due to monsoon storms and the Upper Midwest with some passing cooler fronts.

US Drought Outlook

Here is the national drought map from July 24th, which shows extreme and exceptional drought conditions across much of the Four-Corners region and for a few areas in the Central and Southern Plains. The good news is that the Monsoon season continues in the Southwest, so some locations should continue to see improvement there. 


8 to 14 Day Temperature Outlook

According to NOAA's CPC, August 7th - 13th will be warmer than average across much of the central US once again, while cooler temps will linger across the Southeast and across much of Alaska.


"2018 is on pace to be the 4th-hottest year on record"

Sunburned? You're not the only one. According to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), 2018 is on pace to be the fourth hottest year on record. Only three other years have been hotter: 2015, 2016 and 2017. The upward trend is not lost on experts, who say the rising temperature is a clear indicator of global warming. "The impacts of climate change are no longer subtle," said Michael Mann, a climate scientist and director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University."We are seeing them play out in real time in the form of unprecedented heat waves, floods, droughts and wildfires. And we've seen them all this summer," he said.

See more from CNN HERE:


"Heatwave Turns Europe Brown"

"A persistent heatwave has been lingering over parts of Europe, setting record high temperatures and turning typically green landscapes to brown. The images above show browning in north-central Europe on July 24, 2018. For comparison, the second image shows the same area one year ago. Both images were acquired by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the Suomi NPPsatellite. According to the European Space Agency, these regions turned brown in just a month, during which several countries experienced record high temperatures and low precipitation. Much of Germany has experienced drought conditions since May. The United Kingdom experienced its driest first half of summer (June 1 to July 16) on record. The image pair below shows the burned landscape of the United Kingdom and northwestern Europe as of July 15, 2018, compared with July 17, 2017. Both images were acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite."

See more from Earth Observatory HERE:


"Wildfires Raging in Greece and California Prove Climate Change Is Here"

"First there was Sweden. Then Greece. California. It’s the summer of heat and wildfires, and extremely weird, violent ones at that. But how do we know it’s climate change? On Friday, the World Weather Attribution Project released a damning report that argued the sizzling heat and wildfires burning the planet are anthropogenic—human caused, no doubt about it. The pressure systems have a hand, sure, but the heat waves in Europe, a continent that has rarely seen temperatures climb into the hundreds, are about to become a norm. There’s no way to sugarcoat it: Climate change is here, and we are living in its burning embers."

See more from The Daily Beast HERE:


"Climate experts now cite global warming during extreme weather disasters"

"There is a developing consensus that scientists can be more precise and forceful in connecting some extreme weather events to a warming planet“You never want a serious crisis to go to waste,” Rahm Emanuel, former President Barack Obama’s first chief of staff, once said. The spirit of the now-mayor of Chicago's words live today among climate change researchers and activists, who are using a string of emergencies around the globe to draw attention to human-driven global warming. With deadly wildfires scorching Greece and California, drought throwing Capetown, South Africa, into a water crisis and deadly heat searing Japan, just days after flooding killed 150, the signs of an over-stressed planet seem everywhere. For many who study such calamities, the moment cries out for an explanation and offers an opportunity."

See more from NBC News HERE:


"When The Weather Is Extreme, Is Climate Change To Blame?"

"Dramatic weather events happened this past week in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere. There were wildfires in Greece, Scandinavia, and the Western U.S.Flooding followed record rainfalls in the Northeast. And dangerous heat waves settled over the Southwest, Japan, and the U.K. If it continues like this, 2018 could end up being one of the hottest years on record. When the news is full of stories on extreme weather, it's hard not to wonder: Is this what climate change looks like? Climate scientists say yes — though it's complicated. Take wildfires, for example. "We see five times more large fires today than we did in the 1970s," says Jennifer Balch, professor in geography and director of Earth Lab at the University of Colorado Boulder."

See more from NPR HERE:


"Carbon taxes a mixed blessing for the climate"

"The costs of human changes to the climate are becoming clearer by the day, from flooding and storm surges driven by sea level rise to temperatures in India so extreme that they cause illness and death to humans, animals and crops. So it is encouraging to see members of both political parties in the United States now taking climate change seriously enough that they are willing to break with party to propose a carbon tax. While such a tax has many merits, including focusing attention on the need to replace fossil fuels with alternative energy sources, unless it is levied at a rate far in excess of current proposals it won’t reduce carbon emissions enough to make an impact on climate change. There are much better ways of accomplishing this. The economics of oil and gas in the Middle East illustrates the problems with using a carbon tax to reduce emissions. For example, Saudi Arabia can extract oil at around $5 per barrel, which will sell today for around $70. That’s a profit of $65 on a $5 investment. If a carbon tax was imposed — in the ballpark of $30 per ton of carbon dioxide emitted — it would add about $12 to the cost of a barrel of oil, reducing profits to about $53 on a $5 investment. Still a very attractive deal and not enough to discourage sales."

See more from The Hill HERE:


"Man-made climate change makes heatwaves twice more likely"

"As large swaths of the northern hemisphere are dealing with some of the worst heatwaves in history, researchers have just published a study showing that climate change resulting from human activities makes such events twice as likely. Summers are supposed to be hot — but in many parts of the world, it’s unnaturally and unbearably hot. The UK has witnessed its driest summer in modern history, Japan reported the hottest local temperatures in recorded history, and Scandinavia, known for its frigid temperatures, has been sizzling in temperatures over 30°C (86°F). It’s hard to draw a direct cause-effect relationship between a complex, global phenomenon and singular heatwaves — but there’s a very good chance the two are connected. In the new study, renowned climatologist Michael Mann and colleagues address this issue, looking at data from seven weather stations in Finland, Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden. They chose these stations because they all had digitized records dating back to the early 1900s, unlike most other stations."

See more from ZMEScience HERE:


"Ravenous for Meat, China Faces a Climate Quandary"

"China is already the world’s largest emitter of carbon emissions, accounting for 27 percent of global carbon emissions. Its livestock industry is responsible for producing half the world’s pork, one-fourth of the world’s poultry and 10 percent of the world’s beef. No one knows exactly how much livestock contributes to the country’s mammoth carbon emissions. The last time Beijing produced official figures in 2005, it said that the national livestock sector accounted for more than half of the emissions from its overall agricultural activities. But one thing is for sure: how China will deal with soaring demand for meat is of paramount importance to both the nation and the rest of the world. A 2014 study published in Nature by researchers at the University of Cambridge and the University of Aberdeen stated that to keep up with the demand for meat, agricultural emissions worldwide will likely need to increase by up to 80 percent by 2050 — a figure that alone could jeopardize the ambitious plan to keep planetary warming below the 2-degrees Celsius benchmark set under the Paris climate accord."

See more from Undark HERE:


"Climate Change Strengthens Earth's 'Heartbeat' — and That's Bad News"

"It's no secret that human activity is changing the climate, and one new study shows how our influence is seriously affecting Earth's seasons and atmosphere. Climate change is much more than rising temperatures and melting ice. In a new study, scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and five otherorganizations show that human action significantly affects the seasonal temperature cycle in the troposphere, or lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere — the layer that we live in where weather occurs. These researchers used what is known as a "fingerprint" technique, in which they separated human influence from natural influence on climate. This allowed them to isolate human contributions and assess the specific effects of our species. And, while many fingerprint studies explore climate patterns over years and decades, this work shows how humans influence the changing seasons."

See more from Space HERE:


Thanks for checking in and don't forget to follow me on Twitter @TNelsonWX

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