April Precipitation Update:
Thunderstorms brought some record-setting rainfall values to southeastern Minnesota locations late on April 7th and early morning on April 8th, including the following reports for April 8th:
2.15" at Preston
1.79" at Caledonia
1.65" at Austin
1.64" at Spring Grove
1.46" at La Crescent
1.45" at Lanesboro
1.20" at Grand Meadow
Regional meetings to discuss climate change:The Will Steger Foundation, along with the Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships Program of the University of Minnesota will be hosting meetings next week to discuss climate change in our state. The meetings are called "Climate Minnesota: Local Stories, Community Solutions", more information at the web link. The first meeting will take place in Bemidji on April 14th where I will be speaking along with Mayor Rita Albrecht and others. The second meeting will be in Crookston on April 15th, where I will have the opportunity to speak along with Mayor Gary Wilhite. If you live in those areas, please consider attending.
Weekly Weather Potpourri:Earlier this week, the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory in Princeton, NJ published an interesting analysis of the variation and decline in Arctic sea ice based on satellite observations since 1979. Their findings indicate that Arctic sea ice fluctuations are significantly impacted by heat transport from the Atlantic Ocean.
The climate.gov web site features an interesting article on March tornadoes in the USA and the relatively quiet month that just passed. They note that peak tornado season runs from April through June, with expectations for more activity. This article is available online under the title "Quiet March in Tornado Alley."
In fact our own National Weather Service Office in Chanhassen will have special announcements next week during "Severe Weather Awareness Week" in Minnesota.
Tropical Cyclone Joalane was churning in the Southern Indian Ocean this week south of Diego Garcia. It packed winds of 95 mph with gusts up to 115 mph, producing sea wave heights up to 30 feet. It was expected to remain out to sea and dissipate by early next week.
MPR Listener Question:
Twin Cities Almanac for April 10th:
MSP Local Records for April 10th:
MSP weather records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 88 degrees F in 1977; lowest daily maximum temperature of 33 degrees F in 1997: lowest daily minimum temperature is 18 degrees F in 1962; highest daily minimum temperature of 57 F in 2005; record precipitation of 1.33 inches 1883; and record snowfall is 6.0 inches also in 1891.
Average dew point for April 10th is 29 degrees F, with a maximum of 61 degrees F in 2011 and a minimum of 3 degrees F in 1959.
All-time state records for April 10th:
Past Weather Features:
Following nearly a snowless March, southeastern Minnesota was hit with a late season blizzard over April 8-10, 1973. Winds gusted to 70 mph piling snow into huge drifts. Several observers reported record setting amounts of snow including over 16 inches at Spring Grove and La Crescent, 17 inches at Harmony, and 21 inches at Grand Meadow. Schools were closed and there were widespread power outages.
By far the warmest April 10th in state history was in 1977. Daytime temperatures in the 80s F prevailed across the state. It was 86F at Itasca State Park and 89F at Crane Lake. A temperature of 92F was reported from both Browns Valley (Traverse County) and Madison (Lac Qui Parle County). The warm spell lasted until the last week of the month.
A polar air mass brought winter-like temperatures to the state over April 9-10, 1989. With several inches of snow on the ground, overnight lows fell to single digits and sub-zero readings in many places. Seven northern cities reported sub-zero temperatures and even southern counties fell into single digits with Pipestone reporting 6F and Worthington 9F.
April 8-12, 2013 brought heavy rains to many parts of the state, especially southern counties where 2 to 3 inch amounts were common. In fact Harmony and Caledonia reported over 4 inches. For many observers April of 2013 ranked among the three wettest in history.