According to the MN DNR, peak color typically arrives across the far northern part of the state in mid/late September, while folks in the Twin Cities have to wait until late September/mid October. It's hard to believe, but fall colors will be here before you know it!
Average First Frosts of the Season Nearing...
Looking back at the last 30 years of data at the MSP Airport, the average first frost (32F or colder) is October 12th, which is less than 1 month from now! The earliest was on September 20th back in 1991, but the latest was November 18th in 2016. Last year, our first frost was on October 11th.
Soggy September So Far...
Fall Ragweed Allergies
AACHOO!! Fall allergy sufferers have been having some issues lately, but the good news is that pollen levels have been a little lower as of late. According to Pollen.com, our pollen levels will be holding in the low-medium range over the next several days.
"What Is a Ragweed Allergy?"
"Ragweed pollen is one of the most common causes of seasonal allergies in the United States. Many people have an adverse immune response when they breathe in the pollen. Normally, the immune system defends the body against harmful invaders, such as viruses and bacteria, to ward off illnesses. In people with ragweed allergies, the immune system mistakes ragweed pollen as a dangerous substance. This causes the immune system to produce chemicals that fight against the pollen, even though it’s harmless. The reaction leads to a variety of irritating symptoms, such as sneezing, running nose, and itchy eyes. Approximately 26 percent of Americans have a ragweed allergy. The allergy is unlikely to go away once it has developed. However, symptoms can be treated with medications and allergy shots. Making certain lifestyle changes may also help relieve the symptoms associated with ragweed allergies."
"Climate Change Is Going to Make Ragweed Allergies Even Worse, Study Finds"
"There’s no shortage of horrible things that will become more common in the near future due to climate change, like coastal flooding, extreme weather, and disease-causing ticks, to name a few. But new research published Thursday in PLOS-One adds another annoyance to the list: Allergy-causing ragweed. The common ragweed, or Ambrosia artemisiifolia as it’s formally called, is a voracious plant known for quickly overtaking whatever environment it’s suited to inhabit. The plant grows annually through the warmer parts of the year in the U.S. Importantly for us, it’s also an abundant source of pollen, making it one of the leading triggers of hay fever and asthma. Though native to parts of North America, ragweed has invaded much of Europe, Asia, and other areas with relatively temperate weather, including some of the Southern United States. Given ragweed’s love of warmer temperatures, scientists have feared that climate change has and will continue to help it spread further. There’s already research suggesting that this is happening in Europe, but the authors of this latest study say theirs is the first to consider the future of ragweed in North America."
"Phenology: September 10th, 2019"
US Drought Monitor
According to the latest US Drought Monitor (updated on September 17th), 0.00% of the state of Minnesota was either in a drought or abnormally dry! The last time 0.00% of the state was drought free was earlier this year in mid May. This has been an extremely wet year, no question!
2019 Yearly Precipitation So Far...
2019 has been a pretty wet year across much of the Upper Midwest. In fact, many locations are several inches above average precipitation, some even in the double digits above average, including the Twin Cities, which is more than 10" above average so far this year and at its 2nd wettest start on record. Unbelieveably, Rochester is already at its wettest year on record and it's only mid September!
According to NOAA's CPC, the temperature outlook through the end of the month and early October suggests a pretty tight temperature contrast setting up across the Front Range of the Rockies. This could be a little concerning as several rounds of showers and storms maybe possible, some of which could be strong to severe along with areas of heavy rain. With that said, temps in the eastern half of the country will be warmer than average.
Here's the temperature outlook for the MSP Airport through the end of September and into the early part of October, which shows a pretty warm temp over the next few days. However, the extended outlook towards early October looks much cooler and more fall-like at that point with highs dipping into the 60s, so soak up the warmth while we have it!
Warmest September Temps on Record at MSP
Here are the warmest temps on record at MSP for the month of September. Note that there has only been (1) 100 degree day, which happened back in 1931. Highs in the 90s are certainly more common and have happened quite a few times. In fact, last year in 2018 we had a high of 92 in September and in 2017 there was a 94 degree high temp. Since 2000, there have been (9) 90 high temps during the month of September.
Last Weekend of Summer. Somewhat Stormy Saturday
By Todd Nelson, filling in for Douglas.
Note sure about you, but I feel like the summer went by way too fast. It seemed like we went from uncomfortably sweaty to pumpkin spice everything in just a matter of days, what gives?
Our last weekend of summer will feature sticky and somewhat unsettled weather today, followed by cooler and less humid weather tomorrow. If your plans take you fall color peeping, Sunday looks like the driest most comfortable day to do so.
Waterfowl hunters make a return to their favorite watering hole this weekend and according to the MN DNR, Minnesota duck numbers are up 14 percent from the long-term average. Thanks to a wet year, the wetland habitat increased 19 percent since last year, which has been favorable nesting. It's shaping up to be a great season!
In other news, Imelda became the 7th wettest tropical cyclone on record in the U.S., dumping more than 40 inches of rain across parts of Texas. 5 of the 10 wettest tropical cyclones have occurred since 2000. Good grief! Thankfully, rain chances diminish for flooded out Texans this weekend.
SATURDAY: Breezy & humid with a chance of storms. Winds: SSW 10-20. High: 79.
SATURDAY NIGHT: Chance of t-storms early, then partly cloudy. Winds: SSW 5-10. Low: 58.
SUNDAY: Cooler breeze. Passing shower up north. Winds: WNW 7-12. High: 70.
MONDAY: Fall arrives at 2:50am. Bright sun. Winds: SSW 7-12. Wake-up: 53 High: 73.
TUESDAY: Dry start. Isolated afternoon t-shower? Winds:WSW 5-10. Wake-up: 57. High: 78.
WEDNESDAY: Windy. Lingering shower or storm. Winds: WNW 10-20. Wake-up: 59. High: 73.
THURSDAY: Mostly sunny. Feels like October. Winds: SE 7-12. Wake-up: 50. High: 66.
FRIDAY: Breezy. Chance of showers and storms. Winds: SE 10-15. Wake-up: 52. High: 65.
This Day in Weather History
2005: An unusually intense late season severe weather event affects parts of central Minnesota and west central Wisconsin during the late afternoon and evening hours. Baseball-sized hail, damaging thunderstorm winds, and tornadoes result from several supercell thunderstorms. The most widespread damage occurs across the northern and eastern portions of the Twin Cities. Three tornadoes rake across parts of Anoka and northern Hennepin counties, including an F2, but the tornado damage is overshadowed by the widespread extreme wind damage associated with the rear flank downdraft of the supercell. In addition to the severe weather, many locations received substantial amounts of rain. Many streets and underpasses in the northern Twin Cities metro area were flooded Wednesday night, where radar precipitation estimates were in excess of 3 inches.
1994: 1/2 inch hail in Blue Earth County results in $6 million in crop damages.
1924: Very strong winds occur in Duluth, with a peak gust of 64 mph.
Average High/Low for Minneapolis
Average High: 70F (Record: 94F set in 1937)
Average Low: 50F (Record: 32F set in 1974)
Record Rainfall: 2.07" set in 1986
Record Snowfall: Trace set in 1995
Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
Hours of Daylight: ~12 hours & 14 minutes
Daylight LOST since yesterday: ~ 3 minutes & 6 seconds
Daylight LOST since summer solstice (June 21st): ~ 3 hours & 44 minutes
Moon Phase for September 21st at Midnight
0.2 Days After Last Quarter Moon
What's in the Night Sky?
"Tonight – at sunset – here’s a natural phenomenon you might never have imagined. That is, the sun actually sets faster around the time of an equinox. The fastest sunsets (and sunrises) occur at or near the equinoxes. And the slowest sunsets (and sunrises) occur at or near the solstices. This is true whether you live in the Northern or Southern Hemisphere. And, by the way, when we say sunset here, we’re talking about the actual number of minutes it takes for the body of the sun to sink below the western horizon."
2019 Preliminary Tornado Count