Paul Douglas is a nationally respected meteorologist with 33 years of television and radio experience. A serial entrepreneur, Douglas is Senior Meteorologist for WeatherNation TV, a new, national 24/7 weather channel with studios in Denver and Minneapolis. Founder of Media Logic Group, Douglas and a team of meteorologists provide weather services for media at Broadcast Weather, and high-tech alerting and briefing services for companies via Alerts Broadcaster. His speaking engagements take him around the Midwest with a message of continuous experimentation and reinvention, no matter what business you’re in. He is the public face of “SAVE”, Suicide Awareness, Voices of Education, based in Bloomington. | Send Paul a question.
I see my yard... Kind of
By Todd Nelson
I had to rub my eyes a couple of times. I couldn't believe that I could actually see parts of my yard this weekend! In one week, we lost nearly 10" of snow cover officially at the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport. Last Sunday, the snow depth was 15" and as of Saturday, we had 5". The snow cover took a big hit this last week as we had high temps in the 50s twice; that's the first time we've had a high in the 50s since before Thanksgiving! Interestingly, we've had at least 10" of snow on the ground now since January 15th; the peak was 24" on February 21st!
I'd like to say that our snow cover will continue to dwindle heading through the end of March, but I can't. A storm system looks to be brewing for early next week. Early indications suggest that there will be accumulating snow for parts of Minnesota on Tuesday. Warm air on the southeast side of the storm will keep snow amounts lower, but the track is still questionable at this point. Just note that Tuesday and early Wednesday's travel could be less than ideal.
In the meantime, a Leprechaun warning has been issued for tomorrow. Keep your eyes peeled for any "small, mischievous sprites."
SATURDAY NIGHT: Gradual clearing and colder. Low: 4. Winds: NE 5-15mph
SUNDAY: Cold start with sunshine. Clouds thicken late with a light wintry mix developing late across northern MN. High: 24. Winds: Becoming South 5-10.
SUNDAY NIGHT: Mostly cloudy with a light wintry mix across northern MN. Low: 17
MONDAY: Leprechaun warning. More clouds with a light wintry mix across northern MN. High: 36.
TUESDAY: Rain/snow early, then changing to all snow later. Best chance for accumulating snow in western and northern Minnesota. Wake-up: 27. High: 38
WEDNESDAY: Breezy and cooler with flurries. Wake-up: 26. High: 36
THURSDAY: Happy Spring! Partly sunny and warmer. Wake-up: 21. High: 40
FRIDAY: Clouds thicken, chance of rain/snow? Wake-up: 25. High: 42.
SATURDAY: AM flurry, gradual clearing. Wake-up: 26. High: 38.
Minneapolis Temperature Trend
Here's a look at the temperature trend over the next 15 days for Minneapolis. The dashed lines represent the average highs and lows for this time of the year. Note that the highs appear to stay below average for a majority of the time, while the lows by next week will be well below average.
Here's the future radar into early next week. Note that by Monday, a quick burst of snow looks to drift through the northern part of the state.
The snow potential through PM Monday, shows the best accumulating snow chances across far northern Minnesota.
I Can See My Yard... Kind of
We've lost quite a bit of snow over the last 7 days. Last Sunday, the official snow depth at the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport was 15". Thanks to a rather mild stretch of weather over the past week, that number dropped to 5" as of Saturday!
Slowly, but surely the snowpack is shrinking. This is a look at the snow cover as of Saturday.
Growing Snow Potential
Weather maps continue to suggests a storm system moving through the Upper Midwest by early next week. The storm will wrap warmer air in on it's southeastern side, so snow amounts there should be lighter. Snow accumulations on the western and northern side could be decent... stay tuned! The image below shows the storm position by PM Tuesday.
Picture of the Day
One of my good friends snapped this picture in a recent flight into La Guardia this week. Nice picture!
It's going to be pretty active through early next week. There are two storm systems that will push through the country. The first of which is sitting in the Lower Mississippi Valley and heading for the Eastern Seaboard through early next week. Heavy rain and strong thunderstorms will be found across the Gulf Coast States, while wintry precipitation will be found from the Middle Mississippi Valley to the Mid-Atlantic Region.
Sunday Severe Threat
The severe threat for Sunday doesn't look exceptionally significant, but there is a chance that some of the storms could be strong to severe.
Here's NOAA's HPC 3 day precipitation outlook through PM Tuesday. Note the two blobs of heavier moisture; one in the Southeastern part of the country, while the second is located in the Upper Midwest. The southern severe threat looks be fairly weak across the Gulf Coast states with storm system number one, but the wintry precipitation on the northern flank this system look to be pretty substantial.
National Radar Forecast
Here's a higher resolution look at the southern storm as it intensifies over the Gulf Coast States. Note the heavier snowfall potential on the northern flank of the storm.
Wintry Weather Ahead
The National Weather Service has issued several winter weather headlines from the Middle Mississippi Valley to the Mid-Atlantic region. Snowfall amount could potentially be as much as 6" to 12" along and just east of the Appalachians.
Probability of 4" of Snow
According to NOAA's WPC, the probability of at least 4" of snow or more is quite high from the Appalachians to the Eastern Seaboard.
Probability of 8" of Snow
Even the probability of at least 8" of snow or more is quite high near the Appalachians.
Thanks for checking in and have a great rest of your weekend! Don't forget to check me out on Twitter @TNelsonWNTV
Tug O' War
By Todd Nelson The month of March is always a month of change. The atmosphere responds to the increase in sun intensity by not only warming the atmosphere, but whipping up stronger storm systems responsible for heavy snow and severe weather.
Would it surprise you to know that the sun is about as strong now as it was in late September? The sun's most direct rays will cross the Equator this Thursday (Vernal Equinox), meaning it will officially be Spring in the Northern Hemisphere!
We've gained nearly 3 hours of daylight since the shortest days of the year in late December. It sure is nice having that extra hour of daylight when you get home from work or school, but I think I'm still adjusting to the time change. It's never easy losing that hour, especially with kids.
Even though the calendar says Spring, it's interesting to note that March is typically our 3rd snowiest month, averaging a little less than 11" over the past 30 years. So far this March, we've only seen 0.3", so that makes me think we're due for something.
Weather maps look more interesting as we head into early next week. It appears that there is some accumulating snow potential close to home, stay tuned!
FRIDAY NIGHT: Still breezy. Partly cloudy and colder. Low: 18. Winds: Turning NNE 10-15mph.
SATURDAY: Clipper potential. Coating of snow possible, mainly across extreme southern MN. High:30. Winds: NE 10-15mph
SATURDAY NIGHT: Gradual clearing and colder. Low: 8. Winds: NE 10-15mph
SUNDAY: Chilly start with sunshine. Clouds thicken late with a light wintry mix developing overnight, mainly across northern MN. High: 24.
MONDAY: More clouds. Light wintry mix possible. Wake-up: 15. High: 35
TUESDAY: Growing snow chance. Wake-up: 26. High: 37
WEDNESDAY: Lingering light snow early. Cooler. Wake-up: 25. High: 37
THURSDAY: Happy Spring! Feeling warmer. Wake-up: 22. High: 42
FRIDAY: Clouds thicken, chance of PM rain? Wake-up: 27. High: 45.
Minneapolis Temperature Trend
The image below shows the temperature trend for Minneapolis through midweek next week. This will actually take us through into the early part of astronomical spring as the Vernal Equinox is next Thursday, March 20th! Note that the temperature trend still looks to be on a bit of a bender over the next couple of weeks. Temperature could spike to above normal levels just after the Vernal Equinox next Thursday, but may yet again dip by the end of the month. Stay tuned!
I'm keeping an eye on this fast moving clipper that will be moving quickly across southern Minnesota on Saturday. This will have the potential to drop a quick coating to a few inches of snow across the extreme southern part of the state. If your travel plans take you near I-90 on Saturday, roads could become snow covered and slippery, travel with caution.
Saturday Snow Potential
It'll be a close call for folks in the Twin Cities, but it appears that the heaviest accumulations with this particular clipper will be south of the city.
Thanks to Aaron Weidner for the image below from the North Shore of Lake Superior. He managed to snap this picture from Grand Superior Lodge on Friday.
Lake Superior Ice Coverage
The picture above from near near Two Harbors, MN shows a little open water near the shore, but according to the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory suggests that Lake Superior was still 94.2% ice coverage as of Friday, March 14th.
Great Lakes Ice Coverage Update
According to the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, the Great Lakes Ice Coverage was was still at 85.6% as of Thursday, March 13th. this is down from it's peak of 92.2% last Saturday, March 8th. The record Great Lakes ice coverage occurred in 1979 at 94.7%.
March Temperature Anomaly
Meteorological Winter was one of the coldest winters on record for a number of states in the Midwest. Interestingly, temperatures through the first half of March have been trending cold for some of the same areas.
Stuck in a cold rut... UGH! Take a look at the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook. Note that the northern half of the U.S. looks to stay cooler than average for the last week of the Month.
Developing Storm System
A developing storm system across the southern portion of the country will intensify through early next week to bring thunderstorms and wintry precipitation from Texas into the Northeast. Keep in mind that some of the thunderstorms could be a little on the strong to severe side, while some of the wintry precipitation could be problematic for travelers.
Severe Threat Saturday
The Storm Prediction Center has issued a SLIGHT RISK of severe weather for parts of the Southern Plains, including the northeastern part of Texas for Saturday. The primary threat with an thunderstorm activity would be hail and high winds, but an isolated tornado can't be ruled out.
Here's a preview of what the radar could look like into Saturday evening/early Sunday morning as a line of thunderstorms develops over eastern Texas and pushes east into the Lower Mississippi Valley. Note also that heading into early Sunday morning, there appears to be some decent wintry precipitation developing along the northern periphery of the storm! This is going to be something to watch!
Severe Potential in Texas
Here's a 'Graphicast' from the National Weather Service out of Dallas/Ft. Worth.
A spring-like storm system will bring a round of rain and thunderstorms to North and Central Texas tomorrow, mainly during the afternoon and evening hours. Some storms will be strong to severe, especially for the red shaded area where the atmosphere will become more unstable. The main severe threats tomorrow are large hail and damaging winds, but there is some potential for an isolated tornado. Rain coverage will be highest across the northern and eastern areas where average rain amounts will be near a half inch to 1 inch. Rain amounts will be more spotty as you head southwest as the coverage of storms becomes more scattered, but again, the storms in this area will be more intense.
Here's the NOAA 3 day precipitation outlook through PM Monday. Note the heavier precipitation potential across the Gulf Coast States. This heavier precipitation potential will be aided by thunderstorm activity, which again could be strong to severe in spots.
According to NOAA's WPC, the probability of at least 2" of snow or more is quite high from the Middle Mississippi Valley to the Mid-Atlantic states through early next week.
Snow Storm Potential
According to NOAA's WPC, the probability of at least 8" of snow or more is still fairly high through early next week. Note the probability of at least 8" of snow or more is greatest near the D.C. area! Stay tuned for more!
Thanks for checking in and have a great weekend ahead! Don't forget to check me out on Twitter @TNelsonWNTV