25 F. average high on January 29. Averages are trending upward again, for the first time in 6 months.
34 F. high temperature in the Twin Cities on January 29, 2016.
January 30, 1994: Duluth has a record low of -35.
Why Does Traditional Media Pray For Big Storms?
A TV news consultant confirmed what I had suspected for 35 years. Bad weather drives ratings. Viewers (and readers) are more likely to tune in when the atmosphere is about to unload. No surprises there.
Social media has diluted this effect. More people are getting weather (and news in general) from their social media bubbles, which is both blessing and curse. A tweet rarely provides context; Facebook posts don't promote perspective.
We can make our voices heard more than ever, but the "fake news" epidemic is a reminder to rely on trusted sources; not gossip, rumor or conspiracy theories.
Today's Alberta Clipper brushes the MSP metro with a light snow/rain mix, but 4 inches of slushy snow may fall from Bemidji and Duluth to Rice Lake and Eau Claire. Metro roads stay wet as highs approach 40F. Hints of early March.
Another clipper next weekend may drop a light accumulation, but no ratings-worthy storms are imminent.
A cold front arrives Super Bowl Sunday, but nothing like 1977, when subzero chill caused the St. Paul Winter Carnival to be held indoors for the first time.
84-Hour Snowfall Forecast. Data from NOAA's 12 KM NAM model, showing a carpet of new snow from the next Alberta Clipper with plowable amounts of snow from Brainerd and Hayward to Eau Claire, Green Bay and portions of Michigan from today into Thursday morning. Loop: Tropicaltidbits.com.
Weather Map. The pattern is dominated by a clipper pushing across the Upper Mississippi Valley into the Great Lakes and new England, while the next storm pushes into California by Thursday with more heavy rain and mountain snows. Upslope winds squeeze out more accumulating snow for the northern Rockies. The southern USA is quiet - for now.
Winter Warming Trends in the U.S. A 5.4 F. warming during meteorologist winter since 1970 in the Twin Cities? That's not a climate model; that's based on observations from climate stations positioned well away from the "Urban Heat Island" effect. Climate Central has more details: "...Warmer winters may seem nice at first, but they have major ecological and economic consequences. While warmer weather extends the growing season, it also changes the growing zones while also allowing for the survival of agricultural pests and weeds that normally cannot endure the cold, putting crops more at risk for damage. Warmer winters could also cause some plants to flower earlier, so by the time bees and other pollinators emerge in the spring, their food sources may have already disappeared, causing both bee and plant species to suffer. Winter snowpack, already on the decline, insulates soils for trees, provides water for reservoirs later in the year, and reduces wildfire risk, could disappear if winters continue warming..."
Map credit: "January 21-23, 2017 | 73 confirmed tornadoes, 90 reports, 198 warnings, 14 watches."
Jan. 20 SPC event page | Jan. 21 SPC event page | Jan. 22 SPC event page
NOAA SPC tracks violent EF-4 and EF-5 tornadoes since 1875 here.
Photo credit: " " Credit Todd Heisler/The New York Times.
Photo credit: "Sun peers through onto Playa del Amor in Marieta Islands, Mexico." Photograph by Miguel Naranjo.
TUESDAY: Flurries, wet roads during the day. Winds: NW 10-20. High: 36
WEDNESDAY: More clouds than sun, chilly. Winds: NW 10-15. Wake-up: 17. High: 23
THURSDAY: More sun, cooler than average. Winds: NW 8-13. Wake-up: 7. High: 19
FRIDAY: Mix of clouds and sun, dry. Winds: W 8-13. Wake-up: 6. High: 25
SATURDAY: Period of light snow develops. Winds: S 5-10. Wake-up: 13. High: 29
SUNDAY: Flurries taper, risk of football on TV. Winds: NW 10-20+ Wake-up: 15. High: 27
Image credit: "The background image of Earth was obtained by NASA's Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera aboard NOAA's Deep Space Climate Observatory. (Credit: NASA. http://epic.gsfc.nasa.gov). The curves are the time series of the dissipation of the total kinetic energy, which is used to measure the efficiency of the global atmosphere as a heat engine during the modern satellite era (1979-2013)." University of Houston.
Photo credit: " Walter Michot.
Graphic credit: " Measurementsof sea-ice extent are collected daily. The gray curve in this time series indicates the average sea-ice extent for October through February from 1981 to 2010, with the two-standard-deviation uncertainty represented by the shaded area. The blue curve indicates measures for the current season through Jan. 10, while the dashed green curve representing 2011-2012 is shown for comparison." Credit: NSIDC.