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Showing posts from February, 2016

Preliminary February Climate Summary for Minnesota

Preliminary climate summary for February 2016: Following the strong trend of the past several months and enhanced by a string of unusually warm days to end the month, February of 2016 will likely finish as a warmer than normal month for most places in the state. Mean monthly temperatures will range from 3 to 6 degrees F above normal around the state. Extreme values include high temperatures in the 50s F on February 19th and February 27th (this Sat) at such locations as Redwood Falls, Marshall, Browns Valley, Wheaton, MSP, and other communities; and minimum temperatures of -36°F at Embarrass and -35°F at Cotton on February 14th (Valentine's Day). Minnesota reported the coldest temperature in the nation on only six dates during the month, fewer than the 9 dates in January with the nation's lowest reading. Most observers around the state are reporting a wetter than normal February, with over 35 communities receiving an inch or more of precipitation. The precipitation for

New Seasonal Climate Outlooks

Seasonal Climate Outlooks: The NOAA Climate Prediction Center released new seasonal outlooks on Thursday of this week (Feb 18). The ensemble forecast of monthly anomalies favors a warmer than normal spring for Minnesota, March through May. The confidence or probability for this forecast is close to 70 percent. An early spring seems relatively assured. The outlook for precipitation anomalies over March through May is less certain for Minnesota with equal chances of above or below normal values for much of the state, and slightly favoring drier than normal conditions this spring in northern counties. Cold Valentine's Day: Many northern Minnesota observers reported sub-zero temperatures last Sunday on Valentine's Day (Feb 14). Embarrass, Minnesota reported a second consecutive morning low of -36°F tying Cotton, MN (January 12, 2016) for the coldest reading in the state this winter. Tower and Orr both reported -31°F on Valentine's Day, while Gunflint lake reported

Pattern of February Mimics January

February similar to January temperature pattern: Just like January, the month of February started with warmer than normal temperatures which prevailed over most of the first week of the month. Now the mid month period is bringing single digit and below zero F readings, colder than normal temperatures. But like January, this will be followed by warmer than normal temperatures during the second half of the month. Mid-week low temperatures around the state were sub-zero in many areas, including -25 to -35°F at a few northern locations (including -35°F at Cotton and -32°F at Embarrass). For January and February of 2016 so far the frequency of sub-zero F temperatures is less than average. Here are the average number of sub-zero nights per month for selected Minnesota climate stations with the number of nights measured so far in 2016 (through February 12) shown in parentheses...... January: Duluth 11 (1); International Falls 16 (14); Embarrass 18 (12); Saint Cloud 14 (9); MSP Ai

Record Snowfalls on Groundhog's Day

Record Snowfalls on Groundhog's Day: A strong low pressure system brought widespread heavy snow to parts of eastern Nebraska, northern Iowa, southern and central Minnesota, and western Wisconsin on Groundhog's Day (Feb 2nd). Blizzard conditions, road closures, and early school and business closings were common across much of the region. Overall it was the snowiest Groundhog's Day since 1983 when many climate observers reported record-setting amounts of snowfall, ranging from 6 to 12 inches. Snowfall reports for Tuesday, February 2, 2016 ranged from 4 to 12 inches in many areas, including the Twin Cities Metro Area. One report from Golden Valley was 13.2 inches. For some communities the storm delivered a new record amount of snow for the date. Some of these amounts included; 10.2" at Jordan 10.3" at Chanhassen and University of Minnesota St Paul Campus 9.9" at Gaylord 9.7" at Chaska 8.8" at MSP Airport 8.5" at Grand Meadow 7.0&