Changing Colors
The leaves are slowly starting to change color across the state, helped along by the cool night or two that we had earlier this week. Already some yellow and red colored leaves are starting to dot some of the trails here in the Twin Cities, but as you can see from this picture Friday morning many are still green.
The Minnesota DNR is updating their Fall Color Finder just about daily as state parks continue to report in with the latest. Already some parks in parts of northwest and central Minnesota are reporting between 25-50% color, with a number of parks across northern Minnesota reporting at least 10-25% color. Make sure you check to find out how the color in your local state park is before you head out:
Typical fall color peak isn't until late September to mid-October here across the Twin Cities, with peak of course being earlier across northern portions of the state.
Spectacular Weekend Ahead - Fall Colors Starting To Pop
By D.J. Kayser, filling in for Paul Douglas
Have you noticed a change in your neighborhood in recent days? Fall colors are slowly starting to pop in the trees. It has even started to feel a bit more like fall in the temperature department, especially after a low of 47 Wednesday morning.
The Minnesota DNR reports that several state parks are reporting between 25-50% color across mainly northwest and central Minnesota. These numbers are expected to grow quickly with the average peak across northern Minnesota typically between mid-September to early October. Here in the Twin Cities, we have to normally wait until late September to mid-October for our peak colors.
After rounds of rain the past few days, the weather is clearing out in time for a spectacular weekend to get outside and view some of the changing colors. Sunnier skies can be expected this weekend behind the cold front with warming temperatures - low 70s today, upper 70s tomorrow. While an isolated storm is possible Sunday Night into Monday, our next best shot at rain doesn't appear until the middle of next week.
Extended Forecast for Minneapolis
SATURDAY: Gradually clearing skies. High 70. Low 54. Chance of precipitation 0%. Winds W 5-10 mph.
SUNDAY: Mainly sunny. Isolated storm late? High 79. Low 61. Chance of precipitation 20%. Winds S 5-10 mph.
MONDAY: Sunny and warm. High 76. Low 55. Chance of precipitation 10%. Winds SW 3-5 mph.
TUESDAY: Blue skies. Late night storm possible. High 74. Low 58. Chance of precipitation 20%. Winds SW 3-5 mph.
WEDNESDAY: Storm chances on the increase. High 76. Low 59. Chance of precipitation 30%. Winds SE 5-10 mph.
THURSDAY: Heavy rain possible. High 72. Low 51. Chance of precipitation 40%. Winds S 5-10 mph.
FRIDAY: Storm chances linger. High 68. Low 50. Chance of precipitation 30%. Winds E 10-15 mph.


This Day in Weather History
September 17th

1955: A late-season tornado hits Koochiching County. Most damage is confined to trees.

1911: Pipestone is hit with baseball-sized hail that smashes numerous windows at the Calumet Hotel and high school. The local observer measures hail three inches deep. People get their photos taken in automobiles surrounded by the icy white ground.


Average Temperatures & Precipitation for Minneapolis
September 17th

Average High: 71F (Record: 96F set in 1895)
Average Low: 52F (Record: 34F set in 1943)
Average Precipitation: 0.10" (Record: 2.37" set in 2015)

Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
September 17th

Sunrise: 6:55 AM
Sunset: 7:19 PM

*Length Of Day: 12 hours, 24 minutes and 15 seconds
*Daylight Lost Since Yesterday: ~3mins & 5secs

*Next Sunrise That Is At/After 7 AM: September 21st (7:00 am)
*Next Sunset That Is Before 7 PM: September 28th (6:58 pm)


Minnesota Weather Outlook

Expected Highs Saturday.

We'll see clearing skies throughout the day Saturday with temperatures warming into the 60s across northern Minnesota and the low 70s across southern Minnesota. A few showers will still be possible across parts of north central and northeast Minnesota, but those will slowly fade throughout the day.

Expected Highs Sunday.

Sunday will be a good 5-10 degrees warmer across most of the state, as highs climb into the mid to upper 70s. Some 80s are possible across southern Minnesota, meanwhile Grand Marais will be stuck in the mid 60s.

Temperatures will continue to stay warm for most of the next week across the area, with highs in the 70s (potentially approaching 80 at times). Looking long term, there are hints in the models of a cool down for the last week of the month.

Precipitation chances will be low throughout the next 3-4 days, mainly ramping up as we head toward mid and late next week as a slow system moves through that could bring some heavy rain with it. The Friday morning run of the GFS lingers the system through the weekend across the area, meanwhile the European is much faster, pushing the rain out next Friday.

National Weather Stories
On Saturday, storms will be possible from the Deep South through the lower and mid-Mississippi Valleys onward into the Northeast along a cold front. Some rain will also be possible in parts of the Northwest.
Highs on Saturday will range from the 60s in parts of the Great Lakes region and the Pacific Northwest to 90s across the Desert Southwest and parts of the South. A few locations in the Desert Southwest could top 100.
Highs across a good portion of the nation will be around average to above average Saturday. The only real pockets of cool air will be in parts of the Northwest as well as the Rockies and the central/southern High Plains.
Drought In Massachusetts
Extreme drought - the second highest category - expanded to cover over half the state of Massachusetts this week. Eric Fisher takes a look at what it would take to end the drought over at CBS Boston: "In an odd and frustrating twist, it has rained 9 out of the first 15 days in September over they city of Boston. But it’s been a sprinkle here and a couple hundredths there. Maddening. Now mired in one of the worst droughts in southern New England history, it’s going to take much more than scattered showers or even a tropical system to get us out of the hole."

Thanks for checking in and have a great Saturday! Don't forget you can follow me on Twitter (@dkayserwx) or on Facebook (Meteorologist D.J. Kayser)!

 - D.J. Kayser


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Soggy Friday gives way to more sun late weekend

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Highs Near 80 Sunday - Fall Begins This Week