Update: 1-2" Icy Slush Much of Metro, 3-6" Expected Northern/Western Suburbs (up to a foot parts of central Minnesota)
April 16, 2014 — 6:48pm
Amazing Snowfall Gradient Across Metro Area. Otsego reports 9" of snow on the ground, with 7" at Ham Lake, 5" Forest Lake, 4" Maple Plain and 5" at Delano. Expect a burst of moderate to heavy snow this evening, capable of a couple inches of slushy accumulation across most of the metro, but as much as 3-6" for portions of the northern and western suburbs before snow tapers around 10-11 PM.
Latest Snowfall Reports, Updated 6:30 PM. 10.5" of snow has already piled up near Big Lake with 10" at Annandale and 9" at St. Francis, in northern Anoka County. An icy mix of snow, freezing rain and sleet changes to mostly snow this evening with 1-2" for the immediate downtowns, less south of the airport, more north and west of Minneapolis. The far northern and northwestern suburbs will see a plowable snowfall; most of it cutting off after midnight. Latest snow reports from NOAA are here.
Latest WRF Model. The 18z HopWRF (3 km resolution - it's done a pretty good job this winter isolated snowfall amounts) shows a band of 5-8" from near Willmar and St. Cloud, as much as 10-12" from Sandstone and Hinkley to near Duluth and Superior by Thursday morning. Expect some 3-6" amounts for the far northern and western suburbs. The farther north and west you drive up I-94 or I-35 the more treacherous travel conditions will be overnight. Pretend it's still February.
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A faint puff of Canadian air drops temperatures and humidity levels Sunday and Monday. Better sleeping weather. We warm up later in the week but dangerous heat, extended days or weeks above 90 or 100F, stays south of Minnesota into early August. Check the blog for more details. -Todd Nelson
Friday was volatile, waking up to heavy showers and T-storms passing just south of the MSP metro. After a few hours of warm sunshine another band of severe storms mushroomed up north. The pattern is still ripe for a few more T-storms today, but Sunday should be drier with more clouds than sun and temperatures holding in the 70s across much of the state. We warm up a little next week, but the worst of the blast-furnace heat stays south of Minnesota.
Yes, today is going to be pockmarked with puddles, a few storms may turn severe and flash flooding can't be ruled out. I'll still take that over days or weeks in a row with a heat index above 100F. Dangerous heat will spread from the central USA to the east coast by the weekend; it may feel like 110F in Washington D.C. No wonder politicians want to get out of town...
Yesterday seemed to confirm my theory that most of Minnesota probably won't have to worry about drought this summer (in stark contrast to severe drought gripping much of the Dakotas). We've seen our fair share of hot days, but our heat spikes pale in comparison to what is on tap from the Midwest to the Mid Atlantic, where the heat index may exceed 110F this weekend. It's muggy out there, but at least we see a few dribbles of Canadian air in the coming days...
Low 80s felt pretty good yesterday, about 10F cooler than Monday as a weak frontal boundary pushed just south of Minnesota, allowing slightly cooler, drier air to dribble south. Much of today looks dry, but watch for a squall line of strong to severe T-storms reaching the metro by the dinner hour. A few more waves of storms push across Minnesota into Saturday, when a cooler front of Canadian ancestry rides to the rescue. The rest of the USA should be so lucky...