Friday, June 26, 2009

Weekend Verdict: not a total wash-out

Do you realize that half the weekends since May 1 have been dry in the Twin Cities, no rain reported either Saturday or Sunday? The perception is that it's rained every single weekend, but that's just not the case. Most of May was too cool to really enjoy the cabin though. Last weekend was pretty close to perfect up north; the upcoming weekend won't be as spectacular - plan your outdoor events for Saturday afternoon/evening or Sunday and you should be fine. Most of the outdoor events, concerts/festivities for Sauk Rapids River Days and St. Cloud's Granite City Days should be ok, especially after lunchtime tomorrow. And don't worry about events this evening. I still think any T-storms should hold off until after sunset tonight.

Weekend Headlines

* 90 degree high Thursday in the Twin Cities. Today: a couple degrees hotter.

* Slight severe storm risk over western half of Minnesota: best chance of strong/severe T-storms comes tonight.

* Rainfall amounts range from .25 to .50" Friday night into Saturday morning.

* Drying out Saturday afternoon as skies clear from west to east.

* Light jacket/sweatshirt weather up north Saturday and Sunday night, lows dip close to 50.

* Sunday: better day with a sunny start, becoming partly sunny by afternoon - late day shower possible from Duluth south to the Twin Cities and the St. Croix River Valley. Sunday will feel more like mid/late September with highs holding in the 70s....even some 60s far northern MN.

4th of July Preview

* Information is still sketchy, the computer models a bit contradictory. Right now Friday looks like the warmest day: highs in the upper 70s to low 80s.

* Friday and Saturday (4th) appear to be the 2 nicest days for outdoor plans with plenty of sun both days, Saturday highs: 75-80 F. High pressure remains in control of our weather both days.

* Sunday: more 70s, growing chance of showers and T-storms, best chance mid/late afternoon. A storm approaching from the west pushes the heaviest showers/storms into northern/western MN, eastern MN/Wisconsin may stay dry much of the day.

Paul's Outlook

Today: Sunny, a little more humid, bordering on HOT by afternoon. Winds: SE 5-12. High: near 90

Tonight: Showers and thunderstorms likely, some strong to severe. Low: 66

Saturday: Wet start, showers taper during the morning. Some PM sun, breezy, turning cooler. Winds: W/NW 10-20. High: near 80

Saturday night: Clearing and cooler, light jacket weather late. Low: 56

Sunday: Sunny morning and midday hours. Clouds slowly increase PM hours. A better day for outdoor plans. Winds: NW 10-20, gusts close to 25. High: 75

Monday: Mostly sunny and comfortable - low humidity. High: 77

Tuesday: Sunny and warmer. High: 83

Wednesday: Showers and thunderstorms around. High: 78

Thursday: More sun, pleasantly mild. High: 82

Friday (July 3). Mostly sunny, a bit cooler. High: 78

Saturday (July 4). Lingering sun, low humidity, quite comfortable. Probably dry for fireworks Saturday evening. High: 75

Sunday (July 5): More clouds, growing risk of showers/T-storms. High: 74

SPC Outlook for 7 am today through 7 am Saturday, showing a slight risk of isolated severe storms over western and central Minnesota. Most of the storms should rumble in tonight, probably after dark; a very tiny percentage capable of large hail and damaging straight-line winds.

Latest Drought Monitor for Minnesota, showing drier than average conditions over the southern half of Minnesota. East central and southeastern counties are still in a moderate/severe drought, the worst conditions over the eastern suburbs of the Twin Cities.

WRF/NAM Forecast for 7 am Saturday morning, showing heavy showers/storms pushing across the state. The heaviest rains are forecast for central and northern counties. There is a VERY good chance we'll all wake up to puddles Saturday morning, but skies should brighten by midday, with some PM sun and a drier, less humid northwest breeze kicking in after lunch.

WRF/NAM Outlook for 7 am Sunday, showing dry weather statewide. The lines crossing Minnesota are predicted isobars, lines of constant atmospheric pressure, implying a northwest breeze. The closer isobars are spaced together, the stronger the winds blowing at the surface. Sunday winds will blow from the northwest at 10-20 mph with higher gusts. Lingering cold air aloft may spark patchy PM clouds, especially over the lakes district up north. A few instability showers are possible far eastern MN by late afternoon, from the MN Arrowhead south to Taylor's Falls, the Twin Cities and St. Croix river valley. Even so, the vast majority of the day should be dry.

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