23 F. average high on January 16.
36 F. high on January 16, 2013.
.6" snow fell at MSP International yesterday.
5.8" snowfall so far in January.
11" snow on the ground at MSP.
Minnesota Weather History on January 16, courtesy of the MPX office of the National Weather Service:
1996: Severe ice storm over the western and northern Twin Cities with accumulations up to 1 inch. A foot of snow fell over central Minnesota.
1982: The citizens of Tower woke up to -52 degrees F.
A Canadian Punch
The term "blizzard" originally meant a "flurry of punches" during a boxing match. In 1870 the Vindacator Newspaper in Esterville, Iowa used the term to describe an especially fierce snowstorm. The term caught on. In 1876 the U.S. Signal Corp Weather Service adopted the word, and it's stuck ever since.
Alberta Clippers seem innocent enough - most are fairly harmless. But air accelerating into the core of these miniature atmospheric vacuum cleaners marking the leading edge of Canadian invasions can accelerate to 30-50 mph, whipping up snow already on the ground, producing white-outs, ground blizzards.
This is especially true when it's very cold, snow cover light and powdery, more prone to blowing & drifting, than when the mercury is closer to 32F.
Winds ease a bit today under a chilled blue sky; your commute a bit more tolerable. The next clipper arrives Saturday with a couple inches (heaviest amounts north/east of the Twin Cities metro).
An all-too-brief puff of Pacific air boosts the mercury well into the 30s Sunday; we'll all be serenaded by the sweet sound of dripping icicles for a few hours.
Canada goes on the offensive again next week, although not as cold as last week. No mega-storms, just dribs & drabs of snow.
* File photo above: Wikipedia.
Graphic credit above: Climate Extremes Index, 1910 to 2013 (NOAA).
Photo credit above: "A helicopter carrying water flies over the residential area as a man sprays water on his home on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014, in Azusa, Calif. A wildfire burned out of control near homes in the dangerously dry foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains early Thursday, fanned by gusty Santa Ana winds that spit embers into neighborhoods in the city below, igniting trees. Evacuations were ordered for houses at the edge of the fire." (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong).
Photo credit above: "Varvara Lepchenko of the U.S. receives treatment for heat related illness during her second round match against Simona Halep of Romania during her second round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014." (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)
Photo credit above: "The author, at "work". (Pete Souza/The White House).
TODAY: Blue sky, winds ease. Winds: NW 10. High: 12
FRIDAY NIGHT: Clouds increase, temperatures hold nearly steady. Low: 11
SATURDAY: Next clipper: 1-2" snow, more north/east of MSP. High: 26
SUNDAY: Fleeting thaw. Soak it up. Wake-up: 14. High: 33
MONDAY: Few flakes, colder wind returns. Wake-up: 18. High: 20 (falling during the day)
TUESDAY: A fine arctic breeze. Nippy. Wake-up: -8. High: 2
WEDNESDAY: Sunny start, light snow late? Wake-up: -4. High: 11
THURSDAY: Early flakes, then colder again. Wake-up: 6. High: 16
* Wacky, vaguely troubling snowman photo courtesy of WeatherNation TV meteorologist Todd Nelson.
Photo credit above: "A fire restriction sign is partially burnt by the Rim Fire near Buck Meadows, Calif., Aug. 22, 2013." Max Whittaker/Reuters.
* Joe Romm's take on the apparent decline in climate coverage at Think Progress.
* The has been an increase in the proportion of Americans who believe global warming is not happening (23%, up 7 percentage points since April 2013). But about two in three Americans (63%) believe global warming is happening, a number that has been consistent since spring 2013...."
Other highlights include:
- There has been an increase in the proportion of Americans who believe global warming is not happening (23%, up 7 percentage points since April 2013). But about two in three Americans (63%) believe global warming is happening, a number that has been consistent since spring 2013.
- The proportion of Americans who say they “don’t know” whether or not global warming is happening has dropped 6 points – from 20% to 14% – since spring of 2013.
Photo credit above: "A data collection site on the frozen Arctic Ocean with instruments to measure mercury and ozone." Credit: Alexandra Steffen.