Posted at 7:40 AM on March 11, 2013
by Paul Huttner
Filed under: Spring 2013
Searching for Spring
I feel a little like those cheesy internet ads these days.
"Try this one weird trick for warmer weather!"
Yes, like many Minnesotans I'm a searcher these days. I'm scanning the weather maps for any fleeting sign of milder temps, and there is hope.
It was (still is?) a "real winter" this year. Not our coldest, but with temps +1.0F vs. average for meteorological winter in Minnesota that's close enough for "cold weather" respect in most of the world.
Not a harsh winter? Tell that to the folks in Rochester and Albert Lea who woke up to a fresh 7" to 8" of snow today...on March 11th.
76.9" of snow at International Falls this winter? Almost bring backs memories of the "Die Hard" winters of the 1970s.
My weather ramblings today include counting inches from another (Monday morning) snow shot for southeast Minnesota that grazed the SE metro, and looking ahead to a hopeful forecast that may bring some much needed 40s to Minnesota late this week.
Another Snow Shot:
This time southeast Minnesota and Wisconsin hit the snow jackpot.
If you are planning travel south on I-35, Highway 52 or east on I-94 expect to run into remnant snows today.
Overnight a potent little storm dumped a band of up to 6"+ from Albert Lea through Rochester, Winona, Red Wing to Menomonie & Eau Claire & Black River Falls.
Here are some selected preliminary snowfall totals:
Minnesota Lake 6"
Albert Lea 8"
Looks like the La Crosse NWS pretty much nailed the forecast call, with the exception that the system just grazed the southeast Metro with 1" to 3" of snow...and not the downtown areas.
Stark reminder that March is our 3rd snowiest of the year in Minnesota.
It snowed even harder in northwest Iowa this weekend. Check out the map from the Des Moines NWS.
More snow to melt...and run into the Mississippi watershed this spring.
Snow gradually fades today from Eau Claire to Rochester as the system slides east into Wisconsin.
Skies should brighten a bit in the metro this afternoon, while northwest half of Minnesota should enjoy some cool March sunshine.
March so far: Cool & wet
March in Minnesota is running cool & wet.
Some numbers for MSP Airport:
-1.7F March temps vs. average so far
1.37" March precip so far (263% of average)
9.3" March snowfall so far
10.3" Average total March snowfall (3rd snowiest month of the year at MSP)
44.8" Season snowfall so far (-1.0" vs. average to date)
Rays of hope: Milder days ahead?
This time of year we can all use some good weather news. Here are some positive trends.
-We did not need to shovel Saturday's rain of .61" in the metro!
-Mild weekend temps & rain reduced snow cover at MSP by 5" (11" Friday to 6" Sunday)
-There is no major snow in the forecast for MSP
-Temps will moderate by Thursday, and should reach 40F by Friday & Saturday
-The average high reaches 40F at MSP Wednesday of this week
-Astronomical Spring begins next Wednesday! (March 20th at 6:02 am)
The weather pattern will mellow by Thursday & Friday of this week. The GFS is cranking out some low 40s starting on Friday. Lets hope it verifies.
I don't see any 70s ahead like last March...but noticeably milder days are on the way later this week. This time of year it's common for the models to suddenly shift into a much warmer patter on a dime.
Hang in there folks!