26 F. average high on February 4.
27 F. high temperature in the Twin Cities on February 4, 2016.
February 5, 1834: Unseasonably mild temperatures are felt at Ft. Snelling with a high of 51.
Flashes of Winter - Then An Early March
Handicapping snowstorms now is like predicting how the Vikings will do next season. "Well, on paper they have a good team, but with injuries and unknown draft picks....who really knows?" So it goes with mythic snowstorms. "Well, on paper it's February in Minnesota. It SHOULD snow. But arctic air has retreated north, we're starting from a warmer baseline, a mild Pacific flow dominates..."
I feel like a weatherman in Louisville.
Warmer winters mean more rain and ice than we had in the 1970s and 80s. A generation ago it was consistently cold enough for mostly-snow, at least from December thru February. Until March, when we would star to see a sloppy mix.
March comes early now. ECMWF guidance predicts highs near 50 F. within 12 days. With bare ground more of the sun's energy can go into heating up the air, not melting snow. We're a lock for 40s and I wouldn't be surprised to see 50 degrees. By the way, 50 F. is the average high on April 1.
Expect cool sun today; 40 degrees Monday, then a mix changing to snow Tuesday PM with a few inches Tuesday night.
A bad impersonation of a snowstorm? Just enough to remind you it's still winter.
Parhelia file photo: AerisWeather meteorologist Todd Nelson.
More Active Pattern Brewing. After a relatively quiet couple of days brewing storms look a little more impressive, especially on the west coast of the USA; more heavy rain for northern California with slushy snow accumulation as far north as Seattle. Super Bowl snow showers are likely across New England; a Tuesday storm for the Upper Midwest may start as ice but a changeover to snow is likely with potentially plowable amounts. 84-hour 12 KM NAM solution: NOAA and Tropicaltidbits.com.
Plowable Snow Event Tuesday Minnesota to Michigan? I wouldn't get too excited yet. Precipitation may start as a mix of ice before changing over to all-snow Tuesday PM. Even so I could still see enough slushy snow to shovel and plow from the Twin Cities and Duluth to Green Bay and Marquette.
File photo from Fargo in 2009. Image courtesy of Brian Petersen, Star Tribune.
Photo credit: "
Photo credit: "They’re having fun!" Source: http://www.profootballhof.com/football-history/the-ice-bowl/
Photo credit: "The Preliminary Research Aerodynamic Design to Land on Mars, or Prandtl-M, flies during a test flight. A new proposal based on the aircraft recently won an agencywide technology grant." Credits: NASA Photo / Lauren Hughes.
Photo credit: Kevin Kunishi.
TODAY: Cool sunshine, dry. Risk of football. Winds: NW 5-10. High: 26
SUNDAY NIGHT: Partly cloudy. Low: 18
MONDAY: Mostly cloudy and milder. Good travel weather. Winds: SE 5-10. High: near 40
TUESDAY: Icy mix changes to snow. Few inches - possibly plowable? Winds: N 10-15. Wake-up: 29. High: 32
WEDNESDAY: Partly sunny, feels like -10F. Winds: NW 8-13. Wake-up: 5. High: 12
THURSDAY: Plenty of sunshine, still brisk. Winds: SW 7-12. Wake-up: -2. High: near 20
FRIDAY: Some sun, windy, milder. Rain shower late. Winds: SW 10-20. Wake-up: 15. High: 43
SATURDAY: Cloudy, turning a little cooler. Winds: N 7-12. Wake-up: 29. High: 38
Photo credit: "An Argo float being raised out of the Bellingshausen Sea is shown here. Argo floats are robotic instruments that measure ocean data and transmit it to satellites." Credit: fruchtzwerg's world/Flickr
Photo credit: "Not that long ago, the Republican Party had a presidential nominee who supported action to combat global warming. Above, candidate Sen. John McCain of Arizona talks about the issue in 2008 in North Bend, Wash., (flanked by former Washington Gov. Dan Evans). Polls show that many Republicans support climate action." Elaine Thompson/AP/File.
Photo credit: windonthewires.com.
Cold Getting Less Cold. Climate Central takes a look at the larger trends: "For many locations in the U.S., middle-to-late January is climatologically the coldest time of the year. But extreme cold is on the decline as the world warms from increasing greenhouse gases from the burning of fossil fuels. This week’s analysis examines the coldest night each year in these cities. Even though we will continue to see cold outbreaks in a warming world, the trend in the vast majority of the cities analyzed shows that these extreme cold nights are happening less often. Conversely, as cold extremes continue to become fewer and less intense, hot extremes become stronger and more frequent..."
Pentagon: Arctic Melt Requires Updated U.S. Strategy. Climate Home reports on the jaw-dropping changes in the arctic, and how the military is trying to respond: "...An updated US military strategy for the Arctic says “diminishing ice levels” due to warming temperatures pose a series of security risks to the country. Released this week at the request of Alaska senator Dan Sullivan, a Republican, the 16-page document says the US must boost investment in its military assets around the North Pole. “Diminishing sea ice will give rise to new economic opportunities in the region while simultaneously increasing concerns about human safety and protection of a unique ecosystem that many indigenous communities rely on for subsistence,” reads the Arctic Strategy. “The breaking up of sea ice also threatens existing detection and warning infrastructure by increasing the rate of coastal erosion...”
Photo credit: "US National Guard troops in Utiqiagvik, Alaska." (Pic: Staff Sgt. Balinda O’Neal Dresel/US Army National Guard).
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Image credit: "There have been extensive revisions made to the EPA's climate collaboration page, including removing language about carbon pollution." Credit: EDGI.
The March For Science Isn't Partisan or Anti-Trump - It's Pro-Facts. Quartz reports: "...First came the Women’s March. Now comes the March for Science. Given the ongoing protests sweeping the US, one might assume that scientists are organizing to voice their general disagreement with Donald Trump’s policies—or perhaps that they simply want to protect their grants and jobs from federal funding cuts. But what’s at stake is much bigger than funding. It’s true that the US spends more on science than any other country. This long-term commitment has led to the US being awarded more Nobel Prizes than any other nation, with the majority of the 365 prizes being awarded for physics. The US also publishes more scientific papers than any other nation—twice as many as China, which ranks second. But scientists in the US and around the world are not mobilizing to defend themselves. Rather, they are fighting to protect the fundamental role that science plays in society and government..."
Image credit: "When the government starts trying to stifle science, you know the stakes are high."(NASA/Public Domain).