Local Forecast

Sunday, July 5, 2015 9:41 AM
Prepared by Bob Weisman
Professor of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
Saint Cloud State University
Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department
Saint Cloud and Vicinity Forecast


Go Fifth and Worry Less About Smoke, More About Tonight's Storms

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Smokiest Air Has Pushed Out of Minnesota

We are waking up to more humid, but cleaner air. Note from the visible satellite loop from yesterday morning through today (see visible loop from College of DuPage Satellite and Radar Menu) that the area of haziness in the satellite has pushed southeastward. We have a gap between the weakening leftovers (see NWS Upper Mississippi Valley radar loop) from showers and thunderstorms that developed overnight in the Dakotas and Nebraska (see infrared loop from College of DuPage Satellite and Radar Menu) and the storms that developed in Montana and the Prairie Provinces overnight. Between those areas, the clear air has much less haze in it, meaning that this air has been brought down the mountains, not come from all the fires in northern Alberta, Saskatechewan, and the Northwest Territories (see Canadian current large wildfire events). So, this morning's Minnesota Air Pollution Index map from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency shows only moderate levels of pollution with the only areas higher than 100 AQI (orange) in north central Minnesota. That's considerably better than yesterday, when St. Cloud's AQI hit 151, unhealthy for all people, a level not usually seen, except in Los Angeles.

Hotter, Stickier Today

This will worsen a bit as we will get a chunk of the hot and humid air that has dominated the western third of the US for the past couple of weeks and produced a 102 high in Miles City and a record 99 in Kalispell, near Glacier National Park, in Montana and produced records throughout the west. Note that a southwest wind, however, is coming from where highs were 90-95 in South Dakota, not where the records were happening.

So, we have a real shot at 90 degrees today, especially with less smoke and after the leftover morning clouds clear out.

Threat of Storms Carrying Heavy Rain, Straight-Line Damaging Winds Tonight

The cold front now in southern Canada will push through Minnesota late tonight. There will be storms wandering across North Dakota into northern Minnesota through midday. However, that system will trigger another round of showers and thunderstorms late today in the Dakotas. We could also see some of the leftovers from this morning's storms refire over the eastern half of Minnesota. Some of those storms could produce large hail and perhaps even a tornado. As these storms work their way eastward overnight, they will likely merge into lines of storms. The main severe weather threat in Minnesota is for straight line wind damage from these storms overnight. Some storms could also produce locally heavy rainfall and perhaps even some flooding. There will be widespread rainfall on the order of half an inch with the chance of more to the southwest.

Cooler and Drier Beginning Tomorrow Afternoon

We are still on track to see cooler and drier air work its way into Minnesota tomorrow. Storms will wind down or push southeastward early tomorrow morning and conditions should improve as the day wears on. Highs will be in the upper 70's to near 80 with a brisk northwest wind. This cold front will once again beat back the hot air dominating the West (100's again yesterday throughout the Pacific Northwest, Idaho and even southeastern British Columbia), so it looks like drier and cooler air will push in. If we clear out the clouds early enough on Monday, we could still see highs around 80, but drier air will return. The Canadian air will be in full effect Tuesday with morning temperatures near 50 rising only to the middle to upper 70's. Right now, it looks like only high clouds on Wednesday with highs still in the 70's to near 80.

This is the last forecast I will issue until my return from vacation around July 23 or 24.

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Confidence Level: "I Will Still Have Dandruff Tomorrow"

Sunday 7/5: Lingering morning clouds, then becoming sunny, breezy, hot, and uncomfortably humid. A chance of a late day shower or thunderstorm. High: between 87 and 92. Winds: SW 10-20 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 30%.

Sunday Night: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Some storms could produce heavy downpours and straight-line damaging winds. Warm and still sticky. Low: between 68 and 73. Winds: S-SE 10-20 MPH, becoming NW late. Chance of measurable rainfall: 80%.

Monday 7/6: Lingering early showers giving way to afternoon sun, breezy, not quite as warm, and turning less humid as the day goes on. High: between 75 and 80. Winds: NW 10-25 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 30%.

Confidence Level: "The Twins Will Finish Above .500"

Monday Night: Partly to mostly clear, breezy, cooler, and drier. Low: between 48 and 52. Winds: NW 8-15 MPH. 5-10 MPH late. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Tuesday 7/7: Sunny through perhaps some smoke, not as windy, and a shade cooler with comfortable humidity. High: between 72 and 76. Winds: N-NE 5-10 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Tuesday Night: Partly clear, light winds, cool and dry. Low: between 50 and 55. Winds: light SE. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Wednesday 7/8: Sunny through high clouds and perhaps some smoke, continued seasonably cool. High: between 75 and 80. Winds: SW 5-15 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Confidence Level: "The Cat Will Not Sit on My Grading"

Extended: Warmer and more humid with a slight chance of storms Thursday??? Highs in the upper 70's to near 80. More humid air by next weekend????????

Forecast Confidence (10 - "Know what gas will cost next week, Bob?"; 0 - "Been a victim of road rage lately, Bob?"): 7 Sunday, 6 Sunday night and Monday, 5 Monday night through Wednesday, 3 Thursday, 2 Beyond

Yesterday's High: 85F; Overnight Low (through 8 AM): 61F
St. Cloud Airport 24-Hour Precipitation (through 8 AM Sunday): None; SCSU Precipitation (Through 8 AM Sunday): None

Normal Temperatures for July 5 - High: 82F; Low: 58F
Next Update: Thursday, July 23, 2015 8:00 AM (or as needed)

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Let me know what you think about this forecast and discussion by emailing SCSU meteorology professor Bob Weisman. Please note that I make the forecast, not the weather!

Are you interested in studying meteorology? If so, go to the Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department home page.

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