40-45 F. highs possible New Year's Eve.
Rain Saturday evening may end as 1-3" slushy snow late Saturday night and early Sunday. We may wake up to some slushy, icy roads New Year's Day.
45-50 F. highs predicted for next Friday, January 6 (ECMWF model).
+6.9 F. December temperatures in the Twin Cities are running nearly 7 degrees warmer than average.
9th warmest December on record. Based on the first 28 days of this month, and the forecast through Saturday, there's a good chance this will be the 9th warmest Christmas since 1873. Source: MN State Climate Office.
2002. Last year we went through the month of December with no subzero temperatures. There have been 8 Decembers in the last 120 years where the mercury stayed above 0 for the entire month of December. Details below.
"Winter is nature's way of saying, "up yours." - Robert Byrne
“We’ve seen historic events of nearly every weather category," says Vaccaro. "So in terms of snow storms, and hurricanes and floods and droughts, all of these events this year ranked in the top three or even the highest ever recorded.” The extreme weather affected millions of people, claimed 1,000 lives, resulted in 8,000 injuries and totaled more than $52 billion in economic losses. The most costly, according to David Brown, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, was the year-long drought that continues to grip southern plains states." - from a Voice of America story below.
Breaking News: Accumulating Snow? No, it won't be a major, knock-down, drag-out snowstorm, but a clipper-like system may trigger a period of rain changing to snow Saturday night, conveniently timed for New Year's Eve festivities. It's still early to be throwing inch-amounts around, but I could see a couple inches of slushy snow after midnight Saturday night. Roads should be mainly wet getting to New Year's parties Saturday evening, but they may be snow-covered and icy for the trip home after midnight.
The last three months from October to December in the Twin Cities will finish the 3rd warmest on record back to 1873 with a preliminary average of 40.5 degrees, falling just behind 2001 with 40.8 degrees. 1931 claims the most mild spot with 41.6 degrees."
* Photo above courtesy of David Joles at the Star Tribune.
No Subzero Temperatures In December? Not As Unusual As You Might Think. We've had no nights below zero this month, which is unusual, but hardly unprecedented. Consulting meteorologist Dean DeHarpporte in Eden Prairie dropped me a line last night with some timely information. Thanks Dean!
"I was surprised to find so many zero-less Decembers. It turns out that there have been 8 Decembers in the past 120 years that stayed above zero for the whole month:"
1:42 minutes added in the Twin Cities.
1:29 minutes added in Chicago.
1:24 minutes added in New York City.
:55 minutes added in Houston.
1:06 minutes added in Los Angeles.
7:22 minutes added in Fairbanks, Alaska.
2.05" Meridian, MS. Old record: 1.74" in 1973.
2.20" Cape Hatteras, NC. Old record: 1.11" in 1991.
1.21" Newark, NJ. Old record: .73" in 1944.
1.17" Laguardia, NY. Old record: .81" in 1964.
1.10" Columbus, OH. Old record: .99" in 1958.
73.28" precipitation at Lancaster, PA. That's 32" more than average. Credit: Volker Kruhoeffer.
Maps Looking (A Little) Snowier By Mid January. The GFS 500mb wind forecast for January 13 shows the westerlies finally buckling into a trough of low pressure out west - enough cold air potentially in place for a snow event close to home by Jan. 14, give or take. It's a long way off, but I'm finally detecting some signals that might point to accumulating snow for the Upper Midwest by mid January. It's still more than 2 weeks away - no guarantees, but that dust-covered snowblower may finally see some action within 2-3 weeks.
U.S. Sets Extreme Weather Records In 2011. Those alarmists over at Voice of America have the story: "That tornado was among 1,600 that crisscrossed the nation in 2011. Twelve weather-related disasters accounted for $1 billion or more each in economic losses, a new record, according to Chris Vaccaro, spokesman for the National Weather Service. “We’ve seen historic events of nearly every weather category," says Vaccaro. "So in terms of snow storms, and hurricanes and floods and droughts, all of these events this year ranked in the top three or even the highest ever recorded.” The extreme weather affected millions of people, claimed 1,000 lives, resulted in 8,000 injuries and totaled more than $52 billion in economic losses. The most costly, according to David Brown, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, was the year-long drought that continues to grip southern plains states." Photo above courtesy of the AP.
"Promise only what you can deliver. Then deliver more than you promise." - author unknown.
• Hire a company that is bonded and insured and that has a certified arborist.
• Beware of door-knockers, whose low prices may ultimately prove costly. Take your time to select a reputable company, and avoid hiring anyone who will top a tree.
• Since arborists are in high demand after severe storms, it may pay to wait a while if your tree isn't an imminent hazard. "
* Photo above courtesy of The Oregonian.
"1. Big Company Bureaucracy. This is probably the #1 reason we hear after the fact from disenchanted employees. However, it’s usually a reason that masks the real reason. No one likes rules that make no sense. But, when top talent is complaining along these lines, it’s usually a sign that they didn’t feel as if they had a say in these rules. They were simply told to follow along and get with the program. No voice in the process and really talented people say “check please.”
2. Failing to Find a Project for the Talent that Ignites Their Passion. Big companies have many moving parts — by definition. Therefore, they usually don’t have people going around to their best and brightest asking them if they’re enjoying their current projects or if they want to work on something new that they’re really interested in which would help the company."
Eweek.com has some details on what features may be coming in the new iPad: "But Apple’s plans for the actual devices remain more opaque. Here are a few possibilities:
Siri: Apple’s “digital assistant” is a prime selling point of the new iPhone 4S, and rumors have circulated for some time that Apple plans to build it into a television set scheduled for launch either in late 2012 or early 2013. If Apple’s truly focused on making Siri a big part of its ecosystem, it stands to reason that the technology will find its way to the iPad sooner rather than later.
Retina Display: Various Apple-centric sources, including the blog 9to5Mac, have compiled rumors over the past few months indicating that Apple is planning on some sort of higher resolution display for the next iPad, possibly of the same quality as the Retina Display currently available in later-model iPhones.
Improved Camera: The iPhone 4S features an 8-megapixel camera, which could also find its way into the iPad 3."
Another Day - Another Thaw. Wednesday highs ranged from 31 at Eau Claire to 34 St. Cloud, a balmy 39 in the Twin Cities, 15 degrees above average, just 6 degrees shy of an all-time record high.
Paul's Conservation Minnesota Outlook for the Twin Cities and all of Minnesota:
TODAY: Any icy coating of snow up north early. More clouds than sun, but relatively mild. Winds: NW 8-13. High: 36
THURSDAY NIGHT: Patchy clouds, still unseasonably mild. Low: 31
SATURDAY NIGHT: Rain changes to wet snow, potential for a couple inches of accumulation. Low: 25
Recall: Punishing Drought Just Getting Started In Texas. From the San Antonio Current: "Natural weather cycles delivered the worst one-year drought in the historic record to Texas in 2011. Scientists examining tree rings had to go back as far as 1789 to find a worse one. It was global climate change, however, that supplied the added heat that further reduced precipitation and exacerbated an already ugly dryness into levels of record-breaking heat. When Texas state Rep. Doug Miller suggested that State Climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon had said climate change was not involved, the typically cautious, Bush-appointee offered the Current his correction: "Global warming contributed to the high temperatures, especially with this drought. So it enhanced evaporation and decreased water supply and therefore made the drought more intense then it would otherwise have been." Map above courtesy of NOAA's Drought Monitor.