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Showing posts from February, 2013

New Climate Outlook

New Climate Outlook NOAA's Climate Prediction Center issued new seasonal climate outlooks this week. For the period from March through May they favor somewhat above normal temperatures, especially in eastern MN, and above normal precipitation across the Great Lakes area, including Minnesota. You can read more about these outlooks and see image products here.

The CPC also sees good chances for some continued alleviation of drought across our state through the end of May. The hydrologic features (lake levels and stream flows) will benefit from above normal precipitation whether it comes as rain or snow. The soil will not benefit much until it thaws out later in the spring. Right now soil frost depths still range from 20-40 inches deep in many areas and will take some time to thaw out. On the NWS-Grand Forks Office web site there is a good discussion of the implications of the spring climate outlook for flood threats on the Red River between North Dakota and Minnes…

February snow and moisture

February snow and moisture Mother Nature continued to bring precipitation to the state this month, with an exclamation mark on Sunday and Monday (Feb 10-11). A slow moving weather system from the southwest moved across the state bringing a mixture of rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow to many areas. At times the winds were strong enough to produce blizzard conditions in some western and southern counties. Dew points soared into the low to mid 30s F with this system helping to fuel some record-setting snowfall and precipitation amounts for many observers. The maximum snowfall amount from this storm was 21 inches at Rothsay (Wilkin County) with a melted liquid precipitation of 2.21 inches. Many observers around the state reported 10 or more inches of snowfall with a liquid content of over 1 inch, a very large amount for February. The snowfall reported from Rothsay of 19 inches on Monday, February 11th broke the previous all-time state record amount for the date of 1…

Snowy start to February

Snowy start to February Many observers (including MSP and St Cloud) reported six consecutive days with measurable snowfall to start out the month. In the Twin Cities it was only the 3rd time historically (back to 1871) that 6 consecutive days in February have brought measurable snowfall, and the only time this occurred during the first 6 days. At St Cloud it was only the 2nd time in history that it has snowed measurably on six or more consecutive days in February, and the only time this has happened over the first six days as well. In some areas significant amounts (6 or more inches) have fallen, more than the total snowfall from last month (January 2013) for many. The increasing snow depth may help stabilize frost depths in the soil. Current frost depths around the state range from 18 to 30 inches.

Thursday night (Feb 7) brought freezing drizzle and freezing rain to southeastern Minnesota (from Rochester over to Winona), coating sidewalks and roads with a thin sheet …

Mixed precipitation this week with some records

Mixed precipitation this week with some records The last week of January brought a good deal of moisture to the state in the form of rain, freezing rain, drizzle, sleet, and snow, along with some dense fog as well. Starting Sunday, January 27th dewpoints climbed into the 20s and 30s F, and sleet and freezing rain began in southern parts of the state about midday. By Monday hundreds of accidents had been reported on slick roads. The Twin Cities reported a new record amount of precipitation for the date with 0.49 inches. In Monday (January 28) reports there were also several record setting amounts of precipitation received, including 0.53 inches at Fargo (ND), Moorhead, St Peter, and Jordan, along with 0.65 inches at Worthington. Moorhead also reported a record snowfall on the 28th with 5.8 inches. As the colder air moved over the state on Tuesday, another round of precipitation brought mostly snow, and some record-setting amounts. New snowfall records for January 29…