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Showing posts from April, 2020

Snow Season Review

Snow Season Review: Given the outlook models for the rest of April and beginning of May, it appears there is likely little if any chance for snow across the state, except for a few flurries in far northern counties Sunday and Monday. In that context, I thought it would be time to summarize the 2019-2020 snow season (generally October 1 to April 30) on a statewide basis. At the top of the list is Isabella up above the north shore of Lake Superior in Lake County. They reported over 133 inches. The only other locations over 100 inches for the season were Two Harbors and Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center near Finland, both also in Lake County. But portions of the Red River Valley in northwestern Minnesota reported 50-60 inches, well above normal for them. On the low end was Wheaton (Traverse County) in far west-central Minnesota which reported less than 25 inches of snowfall. In fact many parts of west-central Minnesota had a fairly dry snow season. Some of the major cities

Snow and Cold Dominate the Week

Snow and Cold Dominate the Week: Easter Sunday (April 12) brought nasty weather, with sleet, rain, and snow, along with gusty winds. In southeastern Minnesota a number of observers reported up to 10 inches of snowfall (well below the statewide record for the date of 17.6 inches at Artichoke Lake in 2019). Nevertheless, a number of long- term climate stations in Minnesota reported new daily record snowfall amounts for the date, including: 6.6 inches at MSP (also the snowiest Easter Sunday in history) 7.5 inches at Rochester 10.0 inches at Elgin 7.8 inches at Wabasha 9.6 inches at Theilman 7.0 inches at Minnesota City 6.4 inches at Bricelyn 6.3 inches at Jordan Very cold air ushered in my two consecutive cold fronts kept the snowfall from melting for a few days, and the northerly winds held daytime maximum temperatures down to record or near-record cold levels. On the morning April 14th this week 11 long-term climate stations set new record cold minimum temperature readings, includi

Brief Visit of Spring Weather

Brief Visit of Spring Weather: Over April 6-7 this week, spring emerged briefly with temperatures reaching the 60s F across much of the southern half of Minnesota and over 20 climate stations, including the Twin Cities, reported an afternoon high temperature of 70°F or greater. For the Twin Cities April 7th brought the first 70°F day since last October 9th. Dew points climbed into the 50s F as well, with the Twin Cities tying the all-time high dewpoint record for April 7th of 54°F. The higher dew points and instability in the atmospheric triggered some thunderstorms from Duluth to Rochester. A few areas got some snow, but most observers reported rain, with amounts from a few tenths to over 1 inch. A cold front brought a dramatic drop in temperatures on April 8th, and some sleet, rain, and snow. Some areas of the northeast reported measurable snowfalls with 3 inches at Chisholm, and nearly 5 inches at Grand Marais. Daytime temperatures fell by 20 to 30 degrees F, and even felt

Mixed Start to the Month of April

Mixed Start to the Month of April: The first two days of April brought mixed weather to the state. Many parts of southern and eastern Minnesota enjoyed mild, warmer than normal temperatures (commonly highs in the 60s F). But in the west and northwest (Red River Valley) a winter storm brought a mixture of significant precipitation, including rain, ice, and snow, with colder than normal temperatures. Roads were snow covered in some areas, while other areas reported ice on the roads late on Thursday afternoon and into early Friday morning. Wind Chill values dropped into the teens and single digits and travel was difficult in some areas. Snowfall amounts in the western counties ranged from 1 inch to 4 inches in many spots, with Crookston reporting 9 inches and Karlstad reporting 11 inches. A Climate Scientist Blogs on the Coronavirus Pandemic and Our Response: Dr. Ben Santer is an esteemed climate scientist and Member of the National Academy of Science. He has lectured at the Uni