Light Snow Potential Sunday

A storm system will pass south of the region on Sunday, but areas of light snow will be possible across the southern half of Minnesota into western Wisconsin. Some of the heaviest snow will fall south of the MN/IA border and into southern Wisconsin.

Light Snow Sunday

Here's the snowfall potential for Sunday, which shows about 1" snow possible across the Twin Cities metro with 2" to 3" possible across southeastern MN. Folks across the central and northern part of the state will generally see less than 1".

"February Cold in Historical Perspective"

"Last week I mentioned that February 6-15, 2021 brought the 5th coldest ever 10-day February period of weather (mean temperature -5.4°F) to the Twin Cities (back to 1873). Several people wanted to know how the first half of February (1-15) ranked historically. Some preliminary calculations show: Statewide mean temperature for February 1-15 was -2.4°F. This ranks 9th coldest in history for the first half of the month dating back to 1895. There have been 16 years when the first half of February brought a statewide mean temperature that was subzero, the most recent before this year was in 2014 when the first half of the month average -0.4°F. The coldest first half of February all time was in 1936 with a statewide mean temperature of -12.3°F. For the Twin Cities climate record (back to 1873) the first half of this February averaged 2.7°F, about 16 degrees colder than normal. This ranks as the 11th coldest first half of February. The coldest first half of February in the Twin Cities record is 1875 when the average temperature was -8.9°F. The MN-DNR State Climatology Office reports that from 4pm on February 11 to 11am February 16th, a period of 116 consecutive hours the Twin Cities was at or below 0°F. For historical perspective you can visit their web site which shows many longer periods at or below zero degrees have occurred in the past."

See more from Minnesota WeatherTalk HERE:

Warmer Air Returns!

I am happy to report that the worst of the cold is behind us! In fact, the forecast ahead calls for warmer than average temps on Monday and Tuesday, which will be a nice change from the Arctic air that we've been dealing with over the last couple of weeks.

Extended Temperature Outlook

Here's the extended weather outlook for Minneapolis over the next 5 to 7 days. Note that temps will warm into the 40s on Monday and Tuesday, which will be nearly +10F above average. A cooler breeze arrives once again on Thursday with temps running below by nearly -5F, but it certainly won't be as cold as it has been.

Sunday Weather Outlook

Here's the weather outlook for Minneapolis on Sunday, which shows light snow chances pushing through during the day. Folks across the southern half of the state could see 1" to 2". Note that if we warm into the 30s, it'll be the first time since February 4th.

Sunday Meteograms for Minneapolis

The meteograms for Minneapolis on Wednesday shows temps warming to the lower 30s by the afternoon. After dealing with the Arctic air over the last couple of weeks, Sunday will be very warm. Southeasterly winds will also be a bit on the breezy side with gusts approaching 15mph at times.

Sunday Weather Outlook

Here's the weather outlook across the region for Sunday. Many locations will warm into the lower 30s, which will be at or above average for the first time in nearly 2 weeks. We'll also have light snow pushing through the southern half of the state.

Extended Temperature Outlook

Here's the ECMWF & GFS extended temperature outlook for Minneapolis through the end of month and into early March. Temps will be much warmer than they have been with highs approaching 40F by Monday & Tuesday. The could be a brief cooldown by the end of next week, but the good news is that the extended forecast doesn't show anymore Arctic air anytime soon.

8-14 Day Temperature Outlook

According to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center, the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook suggests warmer than average temperatures across the Eastern third of the nation with colder than average temps lingering across the Western US.

Light Sunday Snow, Then First 40s Since December
By Todd Nelson, filling in for Douglas.

Breaking news! Humans have been sighted outdoors once again after 2 weeks of frigid February temps. During that stretch, the MSP Airport dropped to -19 degrees on the 14th, while Ely, MN bottomed out at an impressive -50 degrees on the 13th. Now that's cold!

According to Mark Seeley at the Minnesota State Climatology Office, the average temp across the state from February 1st to the 15th was -2.4 degrees and the 9th coldest first half of February on record since 1895. The coldest such period was back in 1936 when the average temp for Minnesota was -12.3 degrees!

I am happy to report that the coldest weather that Old Man Winter has to offer us this year is over. We may see a couple of dips here and there over the next few weeks, but it won't get as cold and certainly for not as long.

Today, many of us will see high temps warm into the lower 30s! With this warming comes a little snow, which could add up to an inch or two across the southern half of the state. Tomorrow, the metro could hit 40 degrees; the first time since December!

Extended Forecast

SUNDAY: 1" to 2" of snow across southern MN. Winds: SSW 5. High: 32.

SUNDAY NIGHT: Mostly cloudy and mild. Winds: W 5. Low: 20.

MONDAY: February heat wave. Breezy winds. Winds: WSW 10-15. High: 41.

TUESDAY: More drips. Isolated flake or sprinkle. Winds: WNW 5-10. Wake-up: 30. High: 41.

WEDNESDAY: Another PM thaw. Peeks of sun. Winds: NNW 5-10. Wake-up: 27. High: 36.

THURSDAY: Not as mild. More sunshine. Winds: SW 10-15. Wake-up: 16. High: 28.

FRIDAY: Increasing light snow chance late. Winds: S 10-20. Wake-up: 17. High: 31.

SATURDAY: Lingering snow. Colder PM wind. Winds: WNW 10-20. Wake-up: 18. High: 32.

This Day in Weather History

February 21st

1965: Strong winds occur, reaching speeds of up to 45 mph in the Twin Cities.

Average High/Low for Minneapolis

February 21st

Average High: 31F (Record: 62F set in 2017)

Average Low: 15F (Record: -21F set in 1873)

Record Rainfall: 0.82" set in 1882

Record Snowfall: 5.5" set in 1962

Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis

February 21st

Sunrise: 7:04am

Sunset: 5:50pm

Hours of Daylight: ~10 hours & 46 minutes

Daylight GAINED since yesterday: ~ 3 minutes & 1 seconds

Daylight GAINED since Winter Solstice (December 21st): ~ 2 hours

Moon Phase for February 21st at Midnight

2.5 Days Since First Quarter Moon

What's in the Night Sky?

"First quarter moon was February 19, 2021. On February 20, 21 and 22, you'll find the waxing gibbous moon shining inside a large asterism that we in the Northern Hemisphere call the Winter Circle (or Winter Hexagon). It's a very large star pattern made of six brilliant stars. Around the world on these nights, the moon shines inside the Circle. The pattern is more or less south to overhead in early evening (or north to overhead as viewed from the Southern Hemisphere). It'll drift westward throughout the night and into your western sky by midnight. Note that our chart is set for Northern Hemisphere viewers. From the Southern Hemisphere, the same stars appear near the moon, but the Circle is upside down with respect to our chart, with the star Sirius near the top. Try Stellarium Online for your precise view from your location. The Winter Circle isn't one of the 88 recognized constellations. It's an asterism, a pattern of stars that's fairly easy to recognize. Our sky chart can't adequately convey the Winter Circle's humongous size! It dwarfs the constellation Orion the Hunter, which is a rather large constellation, occupying the southwestern part of the Winter Circle pattern."

See more from Earth Sky HERE:

National High Temps Sunday

Here's a look at weather conditions across the nation on Saturday. Note that much of the nation will be dealing with slightly below average temps, but it won't be as cold as it was last week.

National Forecast Map For Sunday

The weather map on Sunday shows a fairly large system across the Central US with areas of rain and snow. There could be minor snow accumulations farther north.

National Weather Outlook

Here's the weather outlook through Thursday. A fairly quick moving storm system will slide through the Central US on Sunday and Monday with minor snow accumulations from the Midwest to the Great Lakes and Northeast, while locally heavy rainfall will be possible farther south.

7 Day Precipitation Outlook

The precipitation potential over the next 7 days shows heavier precipitation across the Pacific Northwest. There will also be a band of heavier rainfall across the Tennessee Valley.

7 Day Snowfall Potential

The extended GFS snowfall forecast shows heavy snowfall across the Rockies and Cascade range and also from the Midwest to the Great Lakes and into the Northeast.

Climate Stories

"Why thousands of turtles were paralyzed off the coast of Texas this week"

"This week, thousands of sea turtles were paralyzed in the frigid waters along the Texas coastline during the unprecedented winter storm that swept across the country. In response, a small army of volunteers, many of them without power and running water, sprang into action to rescue these endangered creatures. So what caused these sea turtles to freeze up? As temperatures plunged across much of the U. S., the typically warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico fell, too. For sea turtles, such drops can be very risky. As water temperatures fall below 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius), the turtles' heartbeats slow down, effectively paralyzing them. Cold-stunned turtles lose their ability to swim and float to the surface. Such cold-stunned sea turtles are at risk from predators, boat strikes and even drowning, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association."

See more from Live Science HERE:

"Disastrous Houston blackouts captured from space"

"New satellite photos captured the widespread and disastrous power outages that plunged the Houston area into darkness this week, when a powerful Arctic weather system swept through the state. Millions of Texas residents lost power when the polar air mass hit the state on Feb. 13, according to a NASA statement. More than 1 million people in the Houston area were still without power at 1 a.m. on Feb. 16, when the Suomi NPP satellite soared by and measured nighttime light emissions and reflections from the region. A team of scientists at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and Universities Space Research Association (USRA) processed the data to produce a snapshot of the power outages. Compared with an image captured before the cold snap, in the early morning on Feb. 7, sprawling patches of the Feb. 16 image appear pitch-black rather than brightly illuminated."

See more from HERE:

"Why wind turbines thrive in Antarctica and places way colder than Texas"

"At the main U.S. research station in Antarctica, annual temperatures average zero degrees Fahrenheit, but often drop much lower. There, near the United States' McMurdo Station, a few wind turbines can provide enough electricity to power 100 American homes, and avoid burning over 120,000 gallons of diesel fuel each year. This is no surprise. Wind turbines, cleverly designed from airplane wings, provide reliable, ever-cheaper energy that doesn't emit deadly air pollution and planet-warming greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Such lofty turbines were far from responsible for Texas' disastrous energy collapse following a well-predicted surge of Arctic air into the region (it was largely a failure of gas power plants and infrastructure along with an ill-equipped, vulnerable grid). Yet, grossly irresponsible reporting inaccurately blamed a "MASSIVE GREEN ENERGY FAILURE," specifically Texas' over 13,000 wind turbines, for the historic collapse."

See more from Mashable HERE:

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