Posted at 9:02 AM on June 12, 2012
by Paul Huttner
Filed under: Wildfires
39 in Ely, Bemidji, Roseau & Grand Marais this morning
38 in Grand Forks
June 25th last "frost free" date (90% chance of last 32 degree temp) around Embarrass, Minnesota
41,000+ acres burned in massive, out of control Colorado wildfire
Smoke plume drifting into parts of Minnesota
Rising lake levels - Tonka up 1 foot + this spring
2" rainfall totals possible in some areas by late Sunday
Free AC Today:
It's been a remarkable change in air masses in Minnesota over the past 36 hours.
Temps have plunged nearly 50 degrees in Minnesota. Ely dived from 86 Sunday afternoon, to 39 this morning. That's a 47 degree drop!
Enjoy the free AC today. Temps will begin to climb again as winds turn into the south the rest of the week.
It's not that unusual to see 30s (and even frost) in northern Minnesota well into June. The average "frost free" date for places like Embarrass is at or after June 25th! Think about that for a minute....that's after the summer solstice. Scary stuff.
Thundery Pattern Returns:
We'll enjoy one last dry day today in most of Minnesota. The faucet will turn again on tomorrow, and we could see 3 or 4 waves of rain and thunder through the upcoming Father's Day weekend.
Models are indicating some areas may pick up a good 1" to 2" (and possibly up to 3") in some areas by Sunday & Monday. Watering optional this week/weekend.
Dramatic lake & river rises this spring!
The transition from severe drought to nearly normal (and in some cases above normal) water levels this spring is nothing short of amazing.
The level of Lake Minnetonka is up more than 1 foot this spring. Monday's measured lake level is 929.14', up exactly 1 foot since May 4th. That's not easy to do on the big lake.
The flow out of the Gray's Bay Dam increased a bit Monday, from 12CFS to 20CFS.
The rise in lake levels is mostly good news for boaters and swimmers who want to enjoy the lakes this summer, and keep the prop off rocks and reefs.
Massive western wildfires sending smoke to Minnesota:
High Park Fire, Colorado
NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the High Park Fire in Colorado on June 10, 2012 at 2030 UTC (4:30 p.m. EDT) and captured this visible image of the thick pall of smoke blowing east, just north of Fort Collins.
The fire is located about 15 miles west of Fort Collins, in the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and the Pawnee National Grassland. The light brown colored smoke and the heat signatures from the fires were detected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument that flies onboard Aqua. The image was created by the MODIS Rapid Response Team located at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.
The massive western forest fires are starting to have an effect on Minnesota. Take a look at today's smoke analysis from NOAA satellites. You can see some of the smoke for the massive fire near Fort Collins, Colorado has reached Minnesota.
You may see a whitish tint to the sky today, and more vivid colors at sunset.
These fires are going to burn for a while, and smoke plumes may frequent Minnesota and the Upper Midwest in the coming days.