Saturday, September 6, 2014

Nearly Perfect Sunday; October Arrives Later This Week

An Early October?
By Paul Douglas

Piercing cold with normal snowfall." That's the 2014 Farmer's Almanac forecast for Minnesota's upcoming winter. I treat my copy as a guilty pleasure, a curiosity, the weather equivalent of junk food. The Almanac has never published their secret formula. They claim an 80 percent accuracy rate but I'm not convinced.

They nailed last winter's record chill, but the severity of next winter will depend on a multitude of factors, most of them unknowable. Will El Nino finally develop? Will the same high amplitude jet stream pattern that favored record heat/drought in the west and polar chill in the east return? Like a trick knee that keeps buckling under pressure - steering winds aloft still show echoes of last winter's amazingly persistent rut.

My official winter outlook: "changeable". I suspect it won't be quite as cold as last winter, the worst in a generation.

A stunningly nice Sunday gives way to soaking rain Wednesday, followed by an early outbreak of jackets. Highs may hold in the 50s with a rare mid-September frost up north Saturday morning.

An omen of the winter to come? Not necessarily. A sign of more instability and volatility in the weather system? It looks that way.


SATURDAY NIGHT: Mostly clear, cool and comfortable. Low: 56

SUNDAY: Sunny, still postcard-worthy. Dewpoint: 50. High: 77. Winds: SSW 5-10.

SUNDAY NIGHT: Mostly clear and quiet. Low: 57.

MONDAY: More clouds, isolated T-shower possible late. High: 76

TUESDAY: Partly sunny, hints of summer. Wake-up: 61. High: 79

WEDNESDAY: Cooling down, periods of rain. Wake-up: 65. High: 67

THURSDAY: Mostly cloudy, chilling wind. Wake-up: 49. High: 56

FRIDAY: Feels like late October. Raw. Wake- up: 42. High: 53.

SATURDAY: Frost up north? Cool sunshine. Wake-up: 37. High: 55


This Day in Weather History
September 7th

1990: Strong winds and Hail up to 2 inches was reported in Swift, Douglas, Stevens, Kandiyohi, Meeker, Stearns, and Waseca Counties.

1986: A touch of winter over the north, with 20 degrees at Embarrass and 30 at Duluth.

1922: The fifth consecutive day of 90 degrees or above in the Minneapolis area.


Average High/Low for Minneapolis
September 7th

Average High: 75F (Record 98F set in 1976)
Average Low: 56F (Record 40F set in 1956)


Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
September 7th

Sunrise: 6:42am
Sunset: 7:39pm


Moon Phase for September 7th at Midnight
1.8 Days Before Full (Harvest) Moon


Minneapolis Temperature Trend
YIKES!! I certainly don't like the looks of the temperature trend below. The bottom falls out by the 2nd half of next week with temperatures running nearly 20F below average... it'll feel more like October around here in a few days. Grab your jackets and sweatshirts, you'll won't be sorry you dug them out of the back of the closet!

Sunday Weather Outlook
If you liked Saturday's weather, you'll certainly enjoy Sunday's weather. It'll be another day with sunshine and low humidity. This is about as good as it gets! Temperatures will be a bit on the chilly side early in the morning, but readings should have no problem reaching the mid to upper 70s by the afternoon.

Simulated Radar
The simulated radar from AM Saturday through PM Monday suggests a few showers possible by late Monday. Despite that, the weekend weather looks to stay nearly perfect.

Simulated Rainfall Potential
Looking ahead through early next week. The only chance of any accumulating rain potential looks to move back in by late Monday.

Not So Sweaty Summer?
Yes, it was hot a few times this summer, but not exceptionally so. In fact, according to the MN State Climatology Office, in 142 years of record keeping in the Twin Cities, there were only 9 other years that saw 2 or fewer 90F days in a single year! In 1902, 1915 and 1993, there were NO 90F days or warmer! Here's a nice graphic from the NWS Twin Cities depicting the somewhat rare event.

See more from the NWS HERE:

Yearly Temperature Anomaly
The graphic below shows the year-to-date temperature anomaly or how much above or below normal we've been so far this year. Note the blues and greens across much of North America and especially the eastern two-thirds of the continent. This represents much below average temperatures for these areas. This cooler than normal weather pattern can largely be attributed to a high amplitude weather pattern. A near constant ridge in the western U.S. has kept much areas west of the Rockies above average, while a near constant trough of low pressure in the eastern two-thirds has kept those areas cooler than normal.

October Arrives Late Week
Here's the strong storm that we could be dealing with late next week. The forecast for AM Thursday shows a significant cold front moving through the Midwest with temperatures nearly 20F colder than normal behind it moving in by the end of the week.

Dreaded '540' Line
Here's a different look at the same storm for AM Thursday. Note the blue '540' line that noses into the Dakotas and western MN during this time. This '540' line is significant because this is the freezing line and can often be an indicator of snowfall potential if given the right circumstances.

Snow in the Forecast??
With the graphic above in mind, here is the forecast for Crosby, ND - which is located in the far northwestern part of the state. Temperatures in that location by PM Wednesday/AM Thursday are forecast to be even colder than the '540' (freezing) line. The official NWS Bismarck forecast for Crosby, ND is calling for a rain/snow mix by Wednesday night! YIKES!!

Late October-Like Friday
BRR!! Now these are colors that I was hoping to avoid for a while, but here we are. These graphics suggest Friday's temperature outlook from the morning lows to the afternoon highs. Note the widespread 30s across the state with possible frost for some of the prone locations to highs only in the 50s (perhaps even 40s across the northeastern part of the state.

Weather Outlook
The national weather outlook through PM Monday continues to show mostly quiet weather in the central U.S. until the end of the time frame. Some of the heaviest rainfall looks to develop in the southwestern U.S. as remnants from Hurricane Norbert move in.

3 Day Rainfall Forecast
According to NOAA's HPC, the 3 day rainfall forecast suggests some significant rainfall along the extreme eastern part of the East Coast, while additional heavy moisture will continue to move into the Southwestern U.S.

Flood Concerns Continue
The National Weather Service has issued a number of flood watches in the Southwestern U.S.. An increase in moisture from the remnants of Hurricane Norbert will be responsible for flash flood potential across the Southwest.

Norbert was a major hurricane earlier this weekend as it moved northwest along the Baja California Peninsula. The strongest winds stayed offshore, but heavy rainfall drenched areas along the coast.

Tracking Norbert
Some of the models take the remnants of Norbert inland across the Southwest. It's no doubt that this increase in moisture across the Southwest will help drought conditions, but flash flood potential will be high.

More Asteroid News
Here's the latest on yet another fairly close encounter with an asteroid within the next few days from

"While 2014 RC grabs headlines this weekend by flying under Earth's belt of geosynchronous satellites (see the news item below), astronomers are training their telescopes on another, weirder asteroid also in Earth's neighborhood. 2002 CE26 is a binary asteroid consisiting of a primary space rock 3.5 km in diameter and a secondary approximately one-tenth as wide. What's weird is, radar data suggest that the secondary space rock might have a moon of its own. Alberto Quijano Vodniza of the University of Narino Observatory in Colombia photographed the triple system streaking through the constellation Pegasus on Sept. 2nd.

At closest approach on Sept. 9th, 2002 CE26 will be 18.4 million km (0.123 AU) from Earth. That is relatively far away, but because of the asteroid's large size, it is still possible to obtain meaningful data from the flyby. NASA astronomers will be pinging the system using the Goldstone radar in the Mojave desert. The Goldstone team says "we should be able to get coarse-resolution images of the primary. Echoes from the secondary will be weak and on the edge of detectability."

They also encourage experienced amateur astronomers to monitor the flyby: "This object should reach 14th magnitude while at favorable solar elongations, so it should be an excellent target for lightcurves.  Lightcurves might detect the signature of at least one satellite and could help refine the orbital period."

The First Billboard to Make Water ? !!
Now this is COOL! The first billboard to make water for the ambient atmospheric moisture... WOW!! There really are some smart people out there!

"What would a great ad for a university of technology be? An ad, that itself, solves a problem through technology. This is exactly what the University of Engineering and Technology of Peru and their ad agency Mayo DraftFCB have done - the first billboard in the world to make drinking water out of thin air and alleviate the lives of Peru's people."

See the full storm from HERE:

Watch the video HERE:

Thanks for checking in and have a great rest of your weekend! Don't forget to follow me on Twitter @TNelsonWX

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