35 F. average high on March 4.
19 F. high on March 4, 2014.
2" snow on the ground at KMSP.
March 4, 1966: Blizzard finally ends in the upper midwest. Some wind gusts from the storm topped 100 mph.
Hockey Tournament Thaw
"It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade" wrote Mark Twain in Great Expectations.
The sun is now as high in the sky as it was on October 7. In spite of 12 lousy degrees yesterday there was standing water on area highways. That higher sun angle will make a noticeable dent in your thermometer by next week, when 50s will come sweeping into town. Like turning on a switch: instant spring.
National Weather Service data shows that Twin Cities temperatures during "meteorological winter" (December into February ) were half a degree F. colder than average, compared to 9F colder last winter.
Ronald Marks asks "I think people would be interested in the Nov. through Feb. temp departure for this long winter." Since November 1 temperatures have averaged 2.5F colder than normal. Chilly, but still not in the same league as last winter.
No storms are brewing - just a thaw. We top freezing by Friday; 40s give way to 50s next week. Most of the snow in your yard will be gone within 5 days with rain possible late next week. Bad news for outdoor ice skating rinks.
One silver lining to so little snow: a lower threat of spring river flooding.
A Serious Warming Trend. This is just about as cold as it's going to get, possibly until next November or December, at least on paper. All models continue to show a dramatic warming trend by late week with a streak of 40s and 50s next week. I'm not convinced MSP will experience 64 glorious degrees a week from tomorrow, but there's little doubt that many of us will feverish within a few days. Like snow? Get out and enjoy what's out there this weekend - most of it will be gone by the middle of next week.
Nice To Be Average Again. Long-range GFS guidance for 500 mb winds shows a strong zonal flow with freqent cold fronts the third week of March, but nothing polar. This looks like highs in the 30s and 40s. Above zero. Progress. Source: GrADS:COLA/IGES.
* Major winter storm creating problems with flooding rains, then changeover to ice and snow with plowable amounts likely from near Little Rock and Nashville to Louisville, Cincinnati, Harrisburg, Washington D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia to New York City from today into Thursday.
* 1-2"+ rains falling on frozen ground creating rapid run-off and a considerable flooding risk from Kentucky, southern Indiana to West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania.
* 4-8" snowfall amounts expected from Louisville and Cincinatti to Washington D.C, Philadelphia and New York City; heaviest snow comes tonight into Thursday with slowly improving travel conditions Friday.
* This will be a heavy, wet snow, capable of dropping tree limbs and power lines. Sporadic power outages are possible from the suburbs of Dallas into the Ohio Valley and Mid Atlantic region.
Timing The Storm: the maps below show the position of heavy snow (blue shades with dark blue representing heavy snow), ice (purple) and rain (green to yellow) between now and Thursday evening. Most of the snow and ice pushes out into the Atlantic by Thursday evening. Graphics: Ham Weather
Paul Douglas - Senior Meteorologist - Alerts Broadcaster
Photo credit above: "Runner Becca Pizzi, 34, uses a snowbank to stretch as she trains along Heartbreak Hill in Newton, Mass., Friday, Feb. 27, 2015. Running 26.2 miles requires endurance, but 8 feet of snow and lots of treacherous black ice are testing this year's participants in frustrating new ways. Though the worst of the winter now seems past, there are only 50 days left until April 20, the 119th running of the venerable race." (AP Photo/Elise Amendola).
Image credit above: "Forest cover loss from 2000 to 2005." Image Credit: NASA/USGS/UMD/SDSU.
Image credit: "Cruithne’s wacky orbit around the sun." YouTube, CC BY-SA.
Photo credit above: Seth Poppel/Yearbook Library. " "
Photo credit above: "
- Avoid overeating by unplugging your refrigerator, locking it up, and throwing it into a gorge between each meal
- Cut car accidents out of your routine as much as possible
- Pet owners have demonstrably longer lifespans than those who live without furry friends, so enslave as many small mammals as your schedule and budget allow..."
TODAY: Bright sun. Won't help much. Wind chill: -5. High: 16
THURSDAY NIGHT: Partly cloudy, not as cold. Low: 12
FRIDAY: Intervals of sun, feels like March. High: 37
SATURDAY: Early flurries, then clearing. Wake-up: 30. High: 36
SUNDAY: Clouds, period of flurries. Wake-up: 26. High: 37
MONDAY: Some sun, breezy and milder. Wake-up: 28. High: 46
TUESDAY: Partly sunny, hints of early April. Wake-up: 31. HIgh: 51
WEDNESDAY: Mix of clouds and sun, quiet. Wake-up: 33. High: near 50
* Image above courtesy of NASA.
What Science Says About the Senator Who Used a Snowball to "Disprove" Climate Change. Mic.com has the story - here's an excerpt: "...By the way, across the globe in Australia, where it actually is the end of summer right now, scientists are already estimating that the country experienced the second hottest February on record. "The main story is that the weather was very persistently warm, particularly in February, rather than notable hot — or cold — spells," Bureau of Meteorology climatologist Acacia Pepler told The Sydney Morning-Herald. "In particular, we had very warm nights in the city, which is not surprising considering the very warm sea surface temperatures." The senator is pandering, clueless, or both..."
Animation credit above: Source: NASA Center for Climate Simulation / NASA Scientific Visualization Studio
* The latest U.S. Drought Monitor map for California is here.
File photo above: "In this Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014 file photo, houseboats sit in the drought lowered waters of Oroville Lake, near Oroville, Calif. California voters overwhelmingly see the state's ongoing water shortage as a serious problem. A Field Poll released Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015 says 94 percent consider the shortage serious, and of those 68 percent find it extremely serious. California is entering its fourth year of drought with lower than normal rain and snow falling on the state that leads the nation in agriculture production." (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File).