27 F. average high on February 9.
9 F. high on February 9, 2014, after waking up to -7.
Trace of snow on the ground at KMSP as of Monday evening at 7 PM.
February 9 in Minnesota Weather History. Source: Twin Cities National Weather Service:
1965: Snowstorm dumps 15 inches of snow at Duluth over two days.
1861: Ice storm near Elk River. Coatings of a 1/2 inch of ice reported. The ice broke off many large branches and saplings were bent to the ground.
1857: Extreme cold at Fort Ripley. E.J. Baily, Assistant Surgeon notes : "Spirit thermometer -50 at 6am. Mercury frozen in charcoal cup. Spirit thermometer at Little Falls 16 miles from the fort -56 at 6am. The lowest degree of cold on record in the territory.
Signs of spring are popping up, a bit prematurely I fear. My tax accountant is leaving me cryptic messages. A pale white light is now visible at breakfast and dinner! Progress. And yesterday a few cardinals were chirping a happy tune outside my bedroom window. They may be jumping the gun.
January was milder than normal, based on a rolling 30-year average at MSP. February is 2.4F colder than average, and it's about to get even colder.
Arctic air doesn't arrive all at once, it comes in waves, like breakers on the beach; each one larger than the one before. Temperatures slip below zero Thursday, over the weekend - with an even colder surge by the middle of next week. Expect 4 subzero nights in the next week. Numbing, but probably not school-closing cold. Unlike last winter I see no evidence of polar air stalling nearby, no perpetual blocking pattern capable of long-term polar pain.
The approach of cold front number one sparks a period of snow this afternoon; a quick inch or two possible with more north of MSP.
I have new respect for what a lousy inch of snow can do to our highways at 10-15F, but with highs today near 30F most freeways should be wet & slushy. In theory.
Photo credit above: "Taylor LaBrecque digs her car out of a snow pile on Beacon Hill Monday, Feb. 9, 2015, in Boston. A long duration winter storm that began Saturday night remains in effect for a large swath of southern New England until the early morning hours Tuesday." (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
A POTENT...BUT FAST WINTER STORM WILL SPREAD A BAND OF SNOW ACROSS THE ADVISORY AREA STARTING LATE TONIGHT IN WESTERN MINNESOTA...AND MOVE EASTWARD ACROSS CENTRAL AND EAST CENTRAL MINNESOTA BY 9 AM. THIS AREA OF SNOW WILL MOVE INTO WEST CENTRAL WISCONSIN BY LATE MORNING. THIS SYSTEM WILL QUICKLY DEPART THE AREA BY TUESDAY EVENING AS IT MOVES OFF INTO THE GREAT LAKES REGION. THE HEAVIEST SNOWFALL WILL OCCUR NORTH OF ST. CLOUD MINNESOTA TO CHIPPEWA FALLS WISCONSIN WHERE LOCALLY 3 TO 5 INCHES WILL FALL. ELSEWHERE IN THE ADVISORY AREA...A QUICK ONE TO THREE INCHES OF SNOWFALL WILL OCCUR BEFORE IT TAPERS OFF. SOME SLEET AND FREEZING RAIN IS ALSO POSSIBLE DURING THE ONSET ACROSS PORTIONS OF WEST CENTRAL MINNESOTA TUESDAY MORNING.
* graphic above courtesy of earth.nullschool.net shows Gulf Stream water temperature anomalies 11.5C warmer than average, roughly 14-15F warmer than average for early February.
But Wait, There's More! One of pet peeves watching reporters doing weather stories. Invariably they'll scream into the microphone "...and meteorologists say another storm is ON THE WAY!" Uh huh. That's a pretty safe forecast. It's the where, when and how much that's problematic. But in the case of Boston, it may be true. ECMWF guidance brushes coastal New England with blizzard conditions this weekend as polar air invades. Yes, it actually can get worse. Map: WSI Corporation.
Photo credit: "Manhattan Park in Cedar Rapids is inundated by floodwaters from the Cedar River on Sunday, July 6, 2014." (Cliff Jette/The Gazette-KCRG TV9)
Photo credit: "Photo of a dirty, milky substance that has fallen on cars outside the National Weather Service office in Spokane, Wash. on Feb. 6, 2015." Photo courtesy: National Weather Service, which has a good explanation of how a white rain may have formed.
* Yes, this does bear a striking similarity to some of the plot lines in George Orwell's 1984. God help us when the machines take over.
TODAY: Dry start. Snow develops. 1-3" by evening, only a coating far south metro. Winds: SE 15. High: near 30
TUESDAY NIGHT: Slick roads as snow tapers to flurries. Low: 20
WEDNESDAY: Windy, tumbling temps. Winds: NW 15-30+ High: 22
THURSDAY: Blue sky, light winds. Wake-up: -4. High: 13
FRIDAY: Mostly cloudy, colder surge late. Wake-up: 5. High: 22
SATURDAY: Hello January! Wind chill: -20. Wake-up: -2. High: 6
SUNDAY: Next clipper. Light accumulation? Wake-up: -3. High: 17
MONDAY: Gray, snow may stay south. Wake-up: 6. High: 25
Graphic credit above: "Average differences between severe weather in 1980-1990 and 2080-2090. Red means more severe storms, and blue means fewer storms." Victor Gensin.
- The annual number of record hot days across Australia has doubled since 1960. Over the past 10 years the number of record hot days has occurred three times more frequently than the number of record cold days.
- The annual occurrence of very hot days across Australia has increased strongly since 1950 and particularly sharply in the last 20 years..."