Friday, June 19, 2009

Nagging storms out west

Update: 3:45. Doppler radar shows strong T-storms popping near Glenwood and Starbuck, moving toward Sauk Centre and Melrose. Doppler estimates suggest hail anywhere from 1/2" to 3/4" in diameter, marble-size to dime-size. If the hail reaches 1" in diameter (quarter-size) the local Chanhassen NWS office will issue severe storm warnings for specific counties. The St. Cloud area may see significant rain and hail into the dinner hour, and in this kind of a pattern we can't even rule out an isolated tornado or funnel cloud. We don't have all the dynamics of yesterday, but there is still enough lingering instability and wind shear to whip up a rotating, "supercell" thunderstorm capable of damaging hail, violent winds, even a stray tornado.

Showers dissipate this evening as the sun sets and the airmass overhead becomes more stable. Saturday still appears to be the nicer day of the weekend with sunshine and mid 80s, even up north at the lake. Sunday won't be quite as lake-worthy, I fear, with a growing risk of showers and T-storms by midday. There's even a slight chance of more severe weather by Sunday afternoon. If you're planning to be out on the lake hunting for walleye (or a memorable sunburn) keep a radio handy, or sign up for weather warnings on your cell phone. Yes, I'm still a bit partial to My-Cast (up to version 7) from Digital Cyclone, a company I once owned, based in Minnetonka. I'm a little biased but it's still the best mobile app out there.

Get ready for (stinking hot!) weather by Monday and Tuesday. Low 90s seem likely both days, I wouldn't be surprised to see some mid 90s close to home both days. Air conditioners will be grinding away and neighbors will be nagging you about the humidity levels. "Yes ma'am, it IS hot enough for me, and thank you for asking!"

And to think, just 8 days ago there was frost up north. A few days from now, factoring in dew points near 70, it may feel like 100 degrees in the shade. That's a pretty significant change in the weather!

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