Summery Sunrise
 
We are less than 2 weeks away from the Summer Solstice and we're enjoying some of the longest days of the entire year. In fact, the Twins Cities is enjoying more than 15 hours of daylight right now and will continue to have more than 15 hours of daylight for the next 1.5 months! If you're keeping track the sunrise is around 5:30am and the sunset is around 9pm.
 
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Tornado on WYDOT Traffic Cam
 
Take a close look at the WYDOT traffic cam below from Wednesday... can you spot the tornado? I know, right!? The apparent tornado touched down near Laramie, WY and lasted for nearly 1 hour! The tornado reportedly caused damage to structures north of Larmaie.
 
 
Photogenic Wyoming Tornado
 
The tornado near Laramie, WY on Wednesday was also very photogenic. Despite causing some damage, the majority of the life of this tornado was spent churning up fields. Take a look at the video below from @pondhockey93 WOW!!
 
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Aletta in the Eastern Pacific
 
Have you heard about Aletta in the Eastern Pacific? Aletta became the first named of the Eastern Pacific on Tuesday, June 5th and has quickly intensified since then. The good news is that Aletta will continue to drift west as it goes through it's tropical cycle and dies out next week. By the way, the Eastern Pacific Hurricane season officially started on May 15th and goes through November 30th. 
 
 
Tracking Aletta
 
The official NHC track for Aletta shows it reaching hurricane status and potentially reaching category 2 strength before dropping back to Tropical Storm and Tropical Depression status early next week. Again, the good news is that this storm will not impact any major land masses.
 
 
5 Day Tropical Outlook
 
On the heels of Aletta is another wave of energy that NOAA's NHC is saying has a high probablility of tropical formation within the next 5 days. If this intensifies to a tropical storm, it will be named Bud!
 
 
Atlantic Outlook
 
The Atlantic remains quiet in the wake of Substropical Storm Alberto that developed in the Gulf of Mexico last week. Interestingly, Alberto developed before the official start date of the Atlantic Hurricane Season, which is June 1st - November 30th and while it might seem a little early to see tropical systems develop at this time of the year, it isn’t unheard of. In fact, since 1950, NOAA says there have been 20 Atlantic based name storms that have formed prior to June 1st, 4 of which have occurred since 2012.
 
 
Tropical Climatology (June 1st - 10th)
 
This is neat map from NOAA's NHC, which shows where we typically see tropical cyclones develop in early June. Note that in the Atlantic, the points of origin correlate well with where Alberto developed last week and the points of origin correlate well with where Aletta has formed in the Eastern Pacific this week.
 
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 Pollen Count - MEDIUM

Alright, well it looks like the worst of the spring allergy season is behind us, but according to Pollen.com, we are still running at MEDIUM allergy levels around the Twin Cities. The forecast through the weekend keeps us in the Medium category through the weekend, so keep the Benedryl handy... ACHOO!!


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Weather Outlook Ahead
 
Here's the weather outlook as we head into the 2nd full weekend of June. It appears that somewhat unsettled weather will be near us, but at this point we're not looking at a complete washout. The best chance of a showers and storms looks like Friday into Saturday with most of the rain falling across the Dakotas and or western/southwestern Minnesota. Sunday is looking like the nicer, drier day of the weekend!
 
 

Rainfall Potential

Here's the precipitation potential through 7pm Sunday, which suggests fairly decent rainfall potential across parts of the Dakotas and far western and southern Minnesota. These bouts of showers and storms may impact the Twin Cities, but again at this point, the weekend doesn't look like a washout by any means.


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Minnesota Drought 
 
According to the latest US Drought Monitor that was released on Thursday, June 7th, drought conditions across the state have improved a little more since last week! Abnormally dry conditions have decreased from ~55% last week to ~35% this week and is confined to the northern half of the state. 
 
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Extended Temperature Forecast

The extended forecast through June 21st & 22nd shows fairly steady temperatures continuing over the next couple of weeks with highs generally in the upper 70s and lower 80s. The images below suggest the GFS (American model) and ECMWF (European model) temperature outlook. Note that the GFS forecast keeps temps a little warmer this week with highs in the 80s, while the ECMWF keeps us a little cooler with a few more 70s showing up over the next couple of weeks. 

 
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8 to 14 Day Temperature Oulook

According to NOAA's CPC, the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook from June 14 - 20 suggests that temperatures will be a little cooler than average across the Upper Midwest. Keep in mind that the average high for the Twin Cities around that time is around 80F.

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2018 Lightning Fatalities

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, 4 people have died from lightning; 2 in Florida, 1 in Texas, and now 1 in Tennesee. Interestingly, from 2008-2017, 222 males have died, while only 63 females have died.

See Lightning Safety Tips From NOAA HERE:

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2018 Tornadoes So Far...

According to NOAA's SPC, there have been 449 preliminary tornadoes so far this year (June 2nd), which is less than what we had at this time over the last couple of years. Interestingly, there were 1,432 tornadoes at this time in 2011; that year ended with 1,897 tornadoes, which is nearly 500 more than the short-term 2005-2015 average. 

Average Tornadoes in June By State

Here's the average number of tornadoes during the month of June by state. Texas sees the most with 24, but interestingly, Minnesota averages 15 tornado this month, which is the most out of any other month during the year. Comparitively, Minnesota averages 11 in July and 5 in August, so we are entering our typical severe weather season here over the several weeks.

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3-7 Day Hazard Forecast

1.) Heavy rain shifting south across the mid-Atlantic and central Appalachians, Sat-Mon, Jun 9-11.
2.) Periods of locally heavy rain for parts of the middle to upper Mississippi Valley, Sat-Mon, Jun 9-11.
Excessive heat for parts of the central and southern Plains along with the lower to middle Mississippi Valley, Sat-Mon, Jun 9-11.
3.) Much above-normal temperatures for parts of the Great Plains and central to northern Rockies, Sat-Sun, Jun 9-10.
4.) Much above-normal temperatures for parts of the western U.S., Tue-Wed, Jun 12-13.
5.) High winds and high significant wave heights for the Aleutians and Alaska Peninsula, Thu-Fri, Jun 14-15.
6.) A moderate risk of much above-normal temperatures for the desert Southwest, Great Basin, and parts of California, Thu-Fri, Jun 14-15.
7.) A moderate risk of much above-normal temperatures for the interior Pacific Northwest, Sat-Wed, Jun 16-20.
8.) A slight risk of much above-normal temperatures for parts of the western U.S., Thu-Wed, Jun 14-20.
9.) A slight risk of heavy precipitation across parts of the Southeast, Thu-Sat, Jun 14-16.
10.) Flooding occurring or imminent along the Potomac River and across the Missouri and Snake River basins.
11.) Severe Drought across parts of the Great Plains, Southwest, Great Basin, California, and Oregon.

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Temperature Anomaly on Sunday

The temperature anomaly across North America from Thursday, showed above average temperatures across much of the central and western part of the nation, while cooler than average temps were in place across the Ohio Valley and Northeast.

Temperature Trend

The 850mb temperature anomaly shows warmer than average temperatures continuing across much of the western half of the country as we head into the weekend. However, cooler than average temps will still be found in the Northeast, while another batch of cooler than average temps moves in along the West Coast.

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Weather Outlook Ahead

Weather conditions over the next few days will remain fairly active across the northern tier of the nation as a stalled frontal boundary keeps showers and storms in place there. Keep in mind that some of the storms could be strong to severe in the Plains as we head into the next several days along with locally heavy rain. Florida will also be a bit unsettled with more showers and storms there through the weekend. A bigger storms looks to impact the Pacific Northwest with areas of heavy rain and gusty winds over the next few days.

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7 Day Precipitation Outlook

According to NOAA's WPC, the 7-day precipitation outlook suggests areas of heavy precipitation across parts of the Central and Eastern US as scattered showers and storms continue there. Some of the heaviest could be found along a stalled frontal boundary that looks to set up from the Midwest to the Ohio Valley as stronger thunderstorms may be possible there over the next few days. Meanwhile, the Southwest looks to remain dry over the next several days.

US Drought Outlook

Here is the national drought map from Thursday, June 5th, which shows extreme and exceptional drought conditions across much of the Four-Corners region and into the Central and Southern Plains. Hopefully we'll be able to pick up some much needed precipitation in these areas as we head into summer, which starts in only 2 weeks! However, note the Southeast is drought free now thanks to a VERY wet month of May!

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Unsettled Into The Weekend, But Not A Washout
By Todd Nelson, filling in for Douglas.

YAWN! Boy this extra light is making me tired. How about you? I'm an early riser and it sure has been tough getting to bed at a decent time when the days are long and the nights are so beautiful. I guess I'm trying to squeeze every ounce out of our well-deserved summerlike weather.

The next 4 weeks will be the longest days of the entire year with the metro enjoying nearly 15.5 hours of daylight! On clear nights, a glimmer of light can be seen as early as 4am, while evening bonfires smolder in dusky twilights that can be seen until well after 10pm. By the way, the longest day of the year arrives June 21st; the Summer Solstice.

Milky sunshine gives way to a few spotty showers and storms Friday and Saturday. It won't be a washout, but a few growls of thunder could briefly chase you indoors over the next 48 hours. It appears that Sunday will be the drier and nicer day of the weekend with highs near 80 degrees and a few more peeks of sticky sunshine.

Tropical dewpoints arrive Monday along with a few strong PM storms. Stay tuned!
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Extended Forecast

FRIDAY: A few late day rumbles. Winds: SE 10-15. High: 78.

FRIDAY NIGHT: Mostly cloudy with a slight chance of thunder. Winds: ESE 5-10. Low: 62.

SATURDAY: Mostly cloudy. Isolated thunderstorms. Winds: E 5-10. Wake-up: 63. High: 81.

SUNDAY: More sun. Stray afternoon shower? Winds: SE 10-15. Wake-up: 65. High: 81.

MONDAY: Muggy. Strong PM storms. Winds: WSW 10-20. Wake-up: 66. High: 82.

TUESDAY: Bright sun returns. Not as sticky. Winds: WNW 5-10. High: 80.

WEDNESDAY: Pleasant. Late day shower up north. Winds: WNW 5-10. Wake-up: 61. High: 80.

THURSDAY: Quiet start. Spotty T-showers develop. Winds: S 5-10. Wake-up: 61. High: 81.
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This Day in Weather History
June 8th

1972: 8 inches of rain falls in 7 hours at Madelia Township in Wantonwan County.

1893: Violent winds occur at Maple Plain from 1:30 to 2:15pm. A large frame house was moved 8 feet from its foundation. Many barns and haysheds blown over by the wind. One barn was blown across Dutch Lake.
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Average High/Low for Minneapolis
June 8th

Average High: 77F (Record: 102F set in 1985)
Average Low: 56F (Record: 36F set in 1885)

Record Rainfall: 2.12" set in 1918
Record Snowfall: NONE
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Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
June 8th

Sunrise: 5:27am
Sunset: 8:57pm

Hours of Daylight: ~15 hours & 31 minutes

Daylight GAINED since yesterday: ~ 57 seconds
Daylight GAINED since winter solstice (December 21st): 6 Hour 44 Minutes
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Moon Phase for June at Midnight
2.5 Days After Last Quarter

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 Temp Outlook For Friday

Monday won't be quite as warm across the state due to additional cloud cover from showers and storms that look to be rolling through. Many locations will only warm into the 70s, which is close to average for this time of the year, but folks in far southwestern Minnesota will still warm into the 80s. 

 
Cabin Forecast
 
Here's a quick look at a few locations across central and northern Minnesota on Friday. Again, reading up north will be a little cooler on Friday thanks to a few showers and storms that will be rolling through during the day.
 
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8 to 14 Day Temperature Outlook

According to NOAA's CPC, June 14th - 20th will be cooler than average across the Upper Midwest, but for folks along the West Coast and across the Southern U.S., 

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"Can Farm Wetlands in Illinois Stop a Dead Zone in the Gulf of Mexico?"

"Winter isn’t the best time of year to visit a wetland. No fewer than three people offered me this advice, yet it’s 2 degrees Fahrenheit and I’m lost in snow-blanketed central Illinois. Two phone calls and a couple U-turns later, and I reach my destination: a small wetland on the edge of a 30-acre farm outside Princeton, Illinois. A year and a half ago this 50-foot-wide plot of matted grasses, no deeper than three feet, was productive cropland. Now it’s hard at work removing nitrates, byproducts of the ammonia-based fertilizers put on the farm fields, from the snowmelt runoff that flows through it.  The Wetlands Initiative constructed it through a federally funded land conservation program. Jill Kostel, an environmental engineer with the organization, worked with a retired, government-employed soil scientist to convince the landowner to pay $12,000 of his own money to convert this land to into a wetland."

See more from ChicagoMag HERE:

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"There's Way Too Little Ice Around Svalbard Right Now"

"If you came here looking for good Arctic sea ice news, I have some. Kidding, there’s no such thing as good Arctic sea ice news these days. When we last checked in with ice in the north, the picture was, uh, not good! The Bering Sea had lost all of its ice roughly a month ahead of schedule. Now there’s a meltdown taking place on the other side of the Arctic. Ice around Svalbard, a Norwegian island that sits between the Greenland Sea to the west and Barents Sea to the east, has receded rapidly over the past few weeks. Zack Labe, a PhD candidate at University of California, Irvine, told Earther the current ice coverage “is even less the average September minimum.” Arctic sea ice hit its second-lowest maximum on record this year after four years in a row of record lows. That left it in an already weakened state for the melt season, which usually sees icepack bottom out in September. But this melt season is already in exceptional territory around Svalbard with four more months to go."

See more from Earther HERE:

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"Mapped: Where lightning strikes the most"

"Every second on Earth, 100 lightning bolts strike the planet. That's about 8 million strikes per day, and 3 billion a year, on average. But as this map of nearly 9 billion lightning strikes shows, lightning is not evenly distributed around the world. The bottom line: Each continent, except for the frozen reaches of Antarctica, has lightning hotspots — usually the parts that have clashing air masses or mountains. Spin the map and see where you're at the greatest risk of getting zapped."

See more from Axios HERE:

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

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Disappearing Fireflies? Somewhat Unsettled weekend