Dew Point: 82-84 (shattering old record of 81) Heat index: 118; all-time record is 119
July 20, 2011 — 2:37pm
Unbelievable. The heat index at MSP reached 118 at 4 pm Tuesday, just one degree away from the all-time heat index record of 119, set in 1966. It felt like 120 at Eden Prairie, 121 at Moorhead.
* Dew Point hit 82 on the hour (which may be the official reading at MSP). But in-between hours the DP rose as high as 84 F. According to a contact at MSP International, "MN Climate Office will have to review and determine if 84 F. stands. In the meantime it's 82F, since it was on an hourly METAR."
Most Humid Day On Record In The Twin Cities. It's official: the dew point hit an astounding 84 at 3:21 and 3:27 pm, to set an all-time record for the most water ever observed in the skies over MSP. We'll have to see if the 84 number stands (it took place between hours), on the hour the dew point was 82. The MN Climate Office will have to verify, as early as Wednesday, whether the new record is 82 or 84. We've had 3 days/row with dew points at or above 80. Some meteorologists theorize that standing water on the Missouri (and "sweaty corn) over southern Minnesota) may be injecting more water into the air. Dew point values are 10 degrees higher at MSP than along the Gulf Coast! Take a bow, you are living through historic heat (and humidity). Wednesday may bring a high of 100 degrees in the Twin Cities. Factor in a dew point of 76-80 and it could easily feel like 115. Mercifully a cooler front knocks the dew point to near 60 by Thursday, meaning HALF as much water in the air as today. Relief is about 36 hours away.
* Heat index reaches 118. All-time record for heat index at MSP is 119, set in 1966!
82 Dew Point at MSP at 2:29 Tuesday Afternoon. A friend of mine, who is an official weather observer at MSP International - forwarded this screen shot to me - proof that the dew point really did hit 82 in the Twin Cities. Whew...
* Severe storm reports from the local NWS office for the storm that rumbled through around midday can be found here.
Nagging Severe Risk. SPC has much of Minnesota and Wisconsin in a "slight risk" today. The immediate threat has passed - but strong/severe storms may redevelop later today, especially north and east of the metro area.
Doppler Rainfall Estimates. Some 3"+ rainfall reports were calculated, using Doppler radar algorithms - the supercell storm that dived southeast into the metro dropped some 1-1.5" rainfall amounts locally.
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Oh brother. The entire weather blog should be a series of apologetic disclaimers today. We still don't know what we don't know, but models continue to suggest accumulating slush late in the weekend, especially Sunday night when we lose the sun's infrared radiation. No problems today; the sun may even peek through. Saturday looks tolerable, but Sunday will be a good Netflix-day with a cold rain mixing with or even changing to wet snow late. Monday, the 1st day of May, could bring plowable amounts of snow to portions of Minnesota. Where those heavy snow bands will set up is anyone's guess right now. Stay tuned.
Well, at least you won't be distracted by blue sky and chirping birds anytime soon - easier to focus on work, school and errands. Flurries may provide a mild jolt today; models still hinting at accumulating slush by Monday (but it's wildly premature to speculate about amounts). Spring fever returns in roughly one week. That's the thing about spring - across most of the USA it's taken as a foregone conclusion. Here in Minnesota, not so much. Minnesotans earn their springs.
We're paying a steep price for last weekend. I grant you it was very nice, especially Saturday, but I would have taken 10 degrees off the afternoon high temperature just to avoid saying the s-word again. Then again, July is the only month where snow hasn't been reported somewhere in Minnesota. Share that with a friend if you're hoping for shocked silence.
Monday turned out a little nicer than expected: low 70s with glimmers of sun. I think it sprinkled for 3 minutes or so. Not bad at all. We got all that "nice weather" out of the way, now it's time for a little payback, served runny and cold. Just rain today into much of Wednesday, but enough cold air may mix down for a slushy mix Wednesday PM, even an inch of snow close to the MSP metro by Thursday morning. Spring in Minnesota is a cool, cruel mistress. You'll see.
OK, so it will be tough topping this past weekend for beauty and splendor. Highs near 70s with generous sunshine, at least from the Twin Cities on south. North of MSP it got gray and chilly in a hurry. A few showers pop today with more 60s, and then a relapse arrives with jacket-worthy 40s, maybe even a few inches of slushy snow by Wednesday across parts of central and northern Minnesota. Isn't April fun?