Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Calmer Wednesday Before More Storms (And Severe Weather?) Thursday

Reports of Tornadoes and Damaging Winds Tuesday

Shelf cloud on the leading edge of the storms Tuesday evening. Image: Nikky Lehtola

Severe storms swept through the metro (as well as other parts of central and southern Minnesota) late Tuesday afternoon into the evening, leaving a swath of damage with them. Above was what was seen as the storms came in - a shelf cloud. Thanks to my friend (and fellow meteorologist) Nikky Lehtola for the photo. Numerous trees were reported down across the region and thousands were without power. There was even flash flooding within the Twin Cities metro. Here are some screenshots of photos posted on social media of damage:

Wind gust/damage reports over the past 24 hours ending 7:20 pm July 5th. Note: reports near Fargo are from Monday evening.

As you can see from the photos above, there were numerous downed trees due to the strong winds that came through with the storms, as well as some building destroyed and siding removed off houses. Here were some of the peak wind gusts that had come in as of 7:30 PM:
  • 3 SSW South Haven - 71 mph
  • Kimball - 70 mph
  • 1 E Zemple - 70 mph
  • 1 N Paynesville - 69 mph
  • 2 ESE St. Paul - 67 mph
  • 1 WNW Maple Grove - 64 mph
  • 1 S Eden Prairie - 61 mph
As of the time that this was posted Tuesday evening, severe storms were still ongoing across parts of the state, so more reports are likely to come in.

Tornado/funnel cloud reports over the past 24 hours ending 7:20 pm July 5th.

There were also a few reports of funnel clouds and tornadoes, mainly out in western Minnesota with the handful of tornado warnings that were issued across the region. There were two reports of a tornado on the ground north and northeast of Appleton around 3 PM Tuesday.

Heavy Rain Tuesday

The other big weather story across Minnesota Tuesday was the heavy rain that fell in spots. We'll start off in the morning hours, when storms brought the Morris area between 3-5"+ of rain. Officially at the Morris airport they picked up 3.91" of rain Monday Night/Tuesday Morning, but other areas in and around Morris received more:
  • Morris 1 SSE: 5.23"
  • Morris COOP: 4.51"
12 hour rainfall totals ending 7:30 PM Tuesday evening.More heavy rain fell across a wider area with the storms Tuesday evening. This was a snapshot of the 12 hour precipitation values as of 7:30 PM Tuesday evening (note: rain was still falling at the time this was taken). There were reports in the metro of over a half an inch in a short amount of time as the storms moved through - and even 2" at the Crystal airport. Due to this heavy rain, flooding was reported in parts of the metro Tuesday evening.

Rain over the past 14 days through Tuesday morning.As you can see, though, many areas of the state need the rain. Most of the Twin Cities has seen less than an inch of rain over the past 14 days, with some of the closest 2" amounts occurring in far southern Minnesota, north of Pine City or out where the rain fell near Morris Monday Night. The only areas that have seen above average rain in the 14 days ending Tuesday morning was out in west-central Minnesota and in far northern Minnesota.
Vacation Optional - Fewer Blobs on Doppler Today
By Paul Douglas

Vacation? I don't need no stinking vacation. "Honey, you said the sun would be out by 3 pm. What happened?" Shrug. "Wait, I thought the storms wouldn't arrive until after 7 pm. How did that happen?" my wife demanded. Deep sigh. "You promised a nice lake day! I can't have all these people in my cabin. I'm very disappointed." Stand in line. Hey, I'm OFF. Can't we just be surprised, like everyone else? Meteorologists are on, 24/7 - even when they don't want to be.

Yesterday's snarling swarm of storms is pushing east. We should salvage a drier, quieter day today with mid to upper 80s. Typical for early July. The next wrinkle of low pressure sparks showers and storms Thursday into part of Friday before skies clear in time for another better-than-average weekend.

Expect 70s for highs on Friday and Saturday; 80s make for a better lake-day on Sunday. Blast-furnace heat passes just south of Minnesota the next couple of weeks; sizzling near-misses capable of igniting a few more rounds of storms.

And to my dear wife: feel free to check the new Aeris Pulse app, created just for you!

Extended Forecast for Minneapolis
WEDNESDAY: Sunnier and drier. High 87. Low 69. Chance of precipitation 10%. Winds NE 5-10 mph.
THURSDAY: More showers and T-storms. High 83. Low 64. Chance of precipitation 70%. Winds E 8-13 mph.
FRIDAY: Breezy & cooler. Leftover showers. High 76. Low 58. Chance of precipitation 40%. Winds NW 15-25 mph.
SATURDAY: Bright sun, comfortable humidity. High 79. Low 64. Chance of precipitation 0%. Winds E 5-10 mph.
SUNDAY: Sunny and warmer. High 83. Low 70. Chance of precipitation 10%. Winds SE 10-20 mph.
MONDAY: Sticky sun, PM T-storms. High 88. Low 71. Chance of precipitation 50%. Winds S 10-20 mph.
TUESDAY: Few more storms, then slow clearing. High 84. Low 70. Chance of precipitation 40%. Wind SW 5-10 mph.
This Day in Weather History
July 6th

1936: A high of 104 degrees is recorded at Minneapolis.
Average Temperatures & Precipitation for Minneapolis
July 6th

Average High: 84F (Record: 104F set in 1936)
Average Low: 64F (Record: 49F set in 19472)
Average Precipitation: 0.12" (Record: 2.83" set in 2015)
Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
July 6th

Sunrise: 5:34 AM
Sunset: 9:02 PM
*Length Of Day: 15 hours, 27 minutes and 46 seconds
*Daylight Lost Since Yesterday: ~1 mins & 5 secs

*Next Sunrise That Is Before 6 AM: August 3rd (6:01 AM)
*Next Sunset That Is Before 9 PM: July 11th (8:59 PM)

Wednesday And Beyond Minnesota Weather Outlook

Highs Wednesday will be a touch cooler across the region, with mid 80s expected across southern Minnesota during the afternoon hours. Upper 70s are expected to be found across far northern Minnesota, and with fog and wind off the lake Grand Marais may not make it out of the 60s.

NAM forecast precipitation and clouds every three hours between 7 AM Wednesday and 7 AM Thursday.

We'll see a mix of clouds and sun across much of the state of Minnesota Wednesday, with chances of rain increasing Wednesday Night.

Severe risk Thursday. Dark green - marginal threat. Yellow - slight threat.

Skipping ahead to Thursday, severe weather will be possible over southern Minnesota where there is a slight severe risk in effect. Large hail and damaging winds would be the main concerns.

GFS rainfall forecast Tuesday through Saturday morning. Green = 1"+, yellow = 2"+, orange = 3"+, red = 4"+. Image: AerisWeather.

The storms Thursday will also bring the potential of another 1"+ to the region. Rainfall totals this week (through Saturday) could total over 3" in spots of Minnesota and the upper Midwest.

The Weather Prediction Center has highlighted an area across central Minnesota (including the Twin Cities) Thursday where rainfall amounts could exceed flash flood guidance with the incoming storms.

After the warm day we saw Tuesday, temperatures will dip back to near the average for much of the next week. Models don't really hint at a warm up (a return of the 90s) at the moment until the middle of the month.

National Forecast Outlook And Stories

NAM forecast precipitation and clouds every three hours between 7 AM Wednesday and 7 AM Thursday.
Some strong to severe storms are possible Wednesday across the Ohio Valley with a line of storms expected to form. Elsewhere, we'll be watching showers and storms across the northern Rockies into the North Central United States. A cool front will be working into the Northwest late Wednesday Night, bringing the chance of showers to places like Seattle by Thursday.

Severe risk Wednesday. Dark green - marginal threat. Yellow - slight threat. Orange - enhanced threat.
Large hail, damaging winds and a few tornadoes are possible Wednesday afternoon and evening across parts of southern/western South Dakota and northern Nebraska. Storms will be most likely after 4 PM MT in these regions and could pack a punch like the storms did in our region Tuesday.

GFS rainfall forecast through Sunday morning. Green = 1"+, yellow = 2"+, orange = 3"+, red = 4"+. Image: AerisWeather.

The heaviest rain from Tuesday through Sunday morning across the nation will be across parts of the North Central, Northeast and Ohio/Tennessee River Valleys, with at least 1-2" of rain expected in many of these areas.

Iowa Rainfall

Image: Iowa Environmental Mesonet.Taking a look at our friends to the south, in parts of the state the lack of rain is becoming an issue. In some areas, it's taken a whole month to accumulate an inch of rain, particularly northwest of the Ames area. More from the Iowa Environmental Mesonet: "Rainfall has been difficult to come by for parts of Iowa this summer. The featured map displays the number of days prior to Monday before an inch of precipitation is accumulated. This is computed for each pixel within the NOAA MRMS Q3 precipitation product. This map nicely highlights the very dry conditions that have persisted especially to the north and west of Ames. The orange color represents four to five weeks of time over which only an inch has accumulated. There is some hope for heavy rainfall this week, but the heat will be back in a big way as well."
Beautiful Thunderstorm Picture
Have you seen this picture floating around social media of a thunderstorm taken from the air? The photo was taken by pilot Santiago Borja, and the Capital Weather Gang has more on it: "This is by far one of the most striking thunderstorm photos we’ve seen. Taken from a plane at the moment of a lightning flash, it illustrates both the ferocity of a turbulent atmosphere and the beauty of Mother Nature. A strong, roiling updraft; a smooth, flat anvil; and the overshooting top — all features of intense developing thunderstorms."
Thanks for checking in and have a great Wednesday! Don't forget you can follow me on Twitter (@dkayserwx) or on Facebook (Meteorologist D.J. Kayser)!
-D.J. Kayser

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