Image credt: Aaron Weidner

PM Puddles
By Todd Nelson

I am a father of a 5 and a 3 year old and feel like I've been roped into singing "Rain, rain, go away" far too many times over the past couple of weeks. It can be far more interesting around the house when your kids can't get outside to blow off some steam. While the rain is helping with the current drought situation, it's also threatening my sanity. Any parents with little ones may feel my pain. Deep breaths!

Expect lots of PM puddles as a weak storm system slides through the region today. It'll be a soggy start to your Friday, but we should clear out a bit to at least see a little sunshine by the end of the day. Our next storm system moves in this weekend with a better chance of strong to possibly even severe thunderstorms late Saturday into Sunday. The Storm Prediction Center has already highlighted parts of the state as a potential risk for stronger storms, so keep up to date with latest forecasts as we approach the weekend.

Extended forecasts suggest that with today's rain coupled with that over the weekend, we could be looking at nearly 1 to 2 inches of

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WEDNESDAY NIGHT: Breezy. Increasing clouds. Low: 50. Winds: SE 10-15.

THURSDAY: Rain. Lots of PM puddles. High: 57. Winds: SE 15.

THURSDAY NIGHT: Rain early, then mostly cloudy. Low: 51. Winds: SE 5-10 turning NNE

FRIDAY: Soggy start. Warme and drier afternoon. High: 72.

SATURDAY: Breezy and mild. Strong PM storms. Wake-up: 54. High: 76.

SUNDAY: Scattered showers and storms. A few heavy downpours. Wake-up: 63. High: 75.

MONDAY: Quickly drying. Cooler temps. Wake-up: 50. High: 64.

TUESDAY: Still dry, nothing rough. Wake-up: 42. High: 66.

WEDNESDAY: Spotty PM shower or storm. Wake-up: 50. High: 67.
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This Day in Weather History
May 14th

1935: Minneapolis sets a record high temperature of 95 degrees.
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Average High/Low for Minneapolis
May 14th

Average High: 69F (Record: 98F set in 2013)
Average Low: 48F (Record: 32F set in 1907)
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Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
May 14th

Sunrise: 5:47am
Sunset: 8:34pm
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Moon Phase for May 14th
2.9 Days Before New Moon


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Minneapolis Temperature Trend

Cloudy, wet weather on Thursday will make for another cooler than average day. In fact, temperatures will be nearly 10° below average for some as most of us struggle to get to 60°. The good news is that we look to warm up to near or above average levels this weekend. Unfortunately, it appears that we will also have some unsettled weather as well. Shower and thunderstorm chances look to be on the rise with a few strong/severe storms possible close to home. Stay tuned!


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Thursday Weather Outlook

Thursday will be a cool and somewhat breezy day across the region as an area of low pressure slides through the region. Most Minnesota locations will only warm into the 50s. 


Thursday Weather Outlook

Outdoor plans for Thursday? You might want to have a plan B. It's going to be quite soggy across the entire region as an area of low pressure slides north through the region. It doesn't appear that we'll have any significant heavy downpours, but a steady light to moderate rain could give way to several PM puddles.

Simulated Radar

Here's the simulated radar from early Wednesday through the end of the week and note the more widespread are of rain moving through the region on Thursday. While it looks like a fairly soggy day, we're not expecting any severe weather!

Rainfall Potential

We've certainly been getting some much needed rainfall as of late and it appears that more heavy rainfall will be on the way Thursday and again this weekend. The image below suggests the rainfall potential through midday Saturday. Note that a few areas may see as much as 0.50" to 1".


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California Snow Potential

Snow will be falling across parts of the Sierra Nevada Range later this week with as much as 6" to 12" possible through PM Thursday. Interestingly, the storm system responsible for the California snow will also be the same storm system responsible for our weekend rain and thunder chances close to home.

* HAZARD TYPE...SNOW.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS...4 TO 6 INCHES AT 6000 FEET WITH LOCAL AMOUNTS UP TO 12 INCHES NEAR THE CREST.

* TIMING...SNOW SHOWERS BEGINNING LATE TONIGHT. HEAVY SNOW SHOWERS ARE POSSIBLE THURSDAY AFTERNOON AND EARLY THURSDAY EVENING.

* IMPACTS...BIGGEST CONCERN WILL BE FOR HIGHWAY 120 OVER TIOGA PASS AND TRAVELERS USING THIS HIGHWAY. ALSO FOR HIGHWAYS 140 AND 41 IN YOSEMITE PARK...AND HIGHWAY 168 NEAR HUNTINGTON LAKE. BACK COUNTRY CAMPERS AND HIKERS WILL LIKELY SEE RAPID CHANGES IN THE WEATHER.

* TEMPERATURES...IN THE UPPER 20S TO LOWER 30S.

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7 Day Precipitation Outlook

When it rains, it pours. According to NOAA's HPC, the 7 day precipitation forecast suggests an additional 3" to nearly 6" of rain possible for parts of the Central U.S.. The heaviest moisture looks to be across parts of Texas and Oklahoma, where as much as 6" to 10" of rain has already fallen over the last 7 days!


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Rainfall Past 7 Days

Radar estimates suggest that parts of Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas have seen nearly 6" to 10" over the last 7 days. With more heavy rain in the forecast over the next 5 to 7 days, more flooding will be likely in some of these areas.

Southern Drought

The image below from the U.S. Drought Monitor from May 5th showed several locations across parts of Texas and Oklahoma under severe and exceptional drought concerns. It'll be interesting to see the latest drought update when that gets released later this week.

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National Weather Outlook

The somewhat soggy and unsettled weather pattern will continue across the western half of the country through the end of the week. The first area of concern will be a weaker area of low pressure moving north through the middle part of the country through Thursday, while the second area of concern takes shape over the Western U.S. through the second half of the week. The first area of low pressure will be responsible for mainly just pockets of heavier rain, while the threats from the second storm will range from snow across the western mountains to late week/weekend severe storms and heavy rain across the Central U.S.

Severe Threat Ramping Up

We’re keeping an eye on the severe weather potential later this week/weekend as a fairly vigorous area of low pressure looks to develop in the Western U.S.. The image below shows the current area of energy/interest just west of the Pacific Northwest.

Increasing Instability

As the storm system develops over the next several days, it appears weather conditions on the eastern side of the storm will begin to become increasingly more unstable. The images below show the available energy (CAPE) for Friday and Saturday afternoon. Note that the more intense oranges and reds, which indicates a fairly substantial amount of energy available for storms to develop and feed from.

CAPE Friday 1pm CT

Severe Threat Friday

...SUMMARY... SEVERE STORMS ARE EXPECTED TO DEVELOP FRIDAY AFTERNOON AND EVENING OVER THE CENTRAL PLAINS WITH MORE ISOLATED DEVELOPMENT POSSIBLE FARTHER SOUTH ACROSS WESTERN PORTIONS OF THE SOUTHERN PLAINS. ...SYNOPSIS... MODEL CONSENSUS IS THAT A LEAD SHORTWAVE TROUGH WILL EJECT NEWD THROUGH THE CNTRL PLAINS FRIDAY IN ADVANCE OF A SYNOPTIC TROUGH THAT WILL MOVE SLOWLY EWD THROUGH THE GREAT BASIN AND CNTRL/SRN ROCKIES. AT THE SFC A LEE LOW WILL PERSIST OVER ERN CO AND SHIFT SLOWLY EWD DURING THE DAY WHILE A DRYLINE SHARPENS FROM WRN KS AND WILL EXTEND SWD THROUGH WRN TX. A WARM FRONT WILL EXTEND EWD FROM THE LOW THROUGH SRN NEB AND SRN IA EARLY FRIDAY AND LIFT SLOWLY NWD DURING THE DAY. ...NRN KS THROUGH NEB AND SRN SD... AREAS OF ELEVATED CONVECTION MAY BE ONGOING OVER NEB EARLY FRIDAY WITHIN ZONE OF ISENTROPIC ASCENT NORTH OF WARM FRONT. THIS ACTIVITY SHOULD SHIFT NWD WITH ADVANCING WARM FRONT DURING THE COURSE OF THE DAY. ATMOSPHERE SHOULD DESTABILIZE EAST OF SHARPENING DRYLINE AND NEAR/SOUTH OF WARM FRONT WHERE LOW 60 F DEWPOINTS WILL ADVECT NWD BENEATH PLUME OF STEEPER LAPSE RATES AND WHERE DIABATIC WARMING OF THE SFC LAYER IS MOST LIKELY TO OCCUR. MLCAPE FROM 1500-2500 J/KG APPEARS LIKELY FROM SRN NEB INTO NRN KS WARM SECTOR BY AFTERNOON. STORMS ARE EXPECTED TO REDEVELOP ALONG ARCING DRYLINE AS IT MIXES NEWD AS WELL AS IN VICINITY OF WARM FRONT FROM SRN/CNTRL NEB INTO NRN KS AND SPREAD NEWD DURING THE DAY. IF SUFFICIENT INSTABILITY CAN BE REALIZED NEAR THE WARM FRONT...IMPRESSIVE 0-1 KM HODOGRAPHS WILL SUPPORT LOW-LEVEL MESOCYCLONES AND A FEW TORNADOES. OTHERWISE SUPERCELLS WITH LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING WIND WILL BE LIKELY FROM FRIDAY AFTERNOON INTO EARLY EVENING. ...WRN TX THROUGH WRN OK AND SRN KS... ATMOSPHERE EAST OF THE DRYLINE WILL BECOME MODERATELY TO STRONGLY UNSTABLE WHERE MID-UPPER 60S DEWPOINTS WILL RESIDE IN WARM SECTOR. PRIMARY UNCERTAINTY IS EXTENT OF THUNDERSTORM INITIATION GIVEN LIKELIHOOD OF AT LEAST A MODEST CAP AND TENDENCY FOR DEEPER FORCING WITH LEAD WAVE TO REMAIN WELL NORTH OF THIS REGION. NEVERTHELESS...AT LEAST MODEST DRYLINE CONVERGENCE SHOULD PROMOTE THE DEVELOPMENT OF AT LEAST ISOLATED STORMS WITHIN AN ENVIRONMENT SUPPORTIVE OF SUPERCELLS. OVERNIGHT ADDITIONAL STORMS ARE EXPECTED TO DEVELOP AND SPREAD INTO WRN OK AS PACIFIC FRONT MERGERS WITH RETREATING DRYLINE.


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CAPE Saturday 1pm CT

Weekend Severe Threat

...DISCUSSION... MODELS REMAIN IN REASONABLY GOOD AGREEMENT REGARDING THE TIMING AND AMPLITUDE OF AN UPPER TROUGH THAT IS FORECAST TO MOVE THROUGH THE CNTRL PLAINS SATURDAY AND UPPER MS VALLEY AND GREAT LAKES REGION SUNDAY

SATURDAY: A MOIST WARM SECTOR WILL RESIDE EAST OF A PACIFIC FRONT THAT WILL ACCOMPANY AN UPPER TROUGH THROUGH THE PLAINS. THE PRIMARY COMPLICATING FACTOR THIS FORECAST WILL BE THE POTENTIAL FOR EARLY CONVECTION OVER PORTIONS OF THE WARM SECTOR WITH GREATEST COVERAGE CURRENTLY FORECAST FROM PARTS OF NRN TX INTO PARTS OF OK AND KS. GIVEN THE MOIST BOUNDARY LAYER IN PLACE...POTENTIAL WILL EXIST FOR ATMOSPHERE TO BECOME AT LEAST MODERATELY UNSTABLE DURING THE AFTERNOON. STORMS WILL LIKELY REDEVELOP ALONG AND AHEAD OF THE FRONT WITHIN DIFLUENT UPPER FLOW REGIME. DEEP-LAYER WIND PROFILES WILL REMAIN LARGELY MERIDIONAL BUT WILL STRENGTHEN WITH APPROACH OF THE UPPER TROUGH AND BECOME SUPPORTIVE OF ORGANIZED SEVERE STORMS.

SUNDAY: SEVERE THREAT WILL SHIFT INTO THE UPPER MS VALLEY AND GREAT LAKES REGION IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE PROGRESSIVE UPPER TROUGH AND ATTENDANT STRONG DEEP-LAYER WIND PROFILES. AS IN DAY 4...EARLY CONVECTION WILL ALSO COMPLICATE FORECAST AND INCREASE UNCERTAINTY REGARDING WHERE GREATEST SEVERE POTENTIAL WILL EVOLVE.

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

Older Post

More Drought Denting Rains on the Way Thursday

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Warmer and Drier Friday Afternoon; Severe Threat This Weekend