Local Forecast

Friday, April 29, 2016 1:51 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


This Time It Will Get Better...I think
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Instead of zipping across Iowa, the slow moving Plains storm that has clogged up the atmosphere took its time drifting through northern Iowa yesterday (see infrared loop from College of DuPage Satellite and Radar Menu). This allowed more bands of light rain to develop and push into central and southern Minnesota during the day and through the evening. At SCSU, some of the precipitation around 6-7 AM briefly fell as sleet. The thicker clouds and the persistent wetness helped to hold high temperatures down to only 45 degrees in St. Cloud and near 40 across southern Minnesota. Plus, there was the biting northeast wind and another 0.15 inch of rain during the day. There are still a few spotty rain showers (see NWS Aviation Center Minnesota map) lingering around the Twin Cities in the early morning hours (see NWS Upper Mississippi Valley radar loop).

There is much drier air really close to us in northern Minnesota. Where the dry air held out, high temperatures climbed into the upper 50's in the northern half of Minnesota yesterday. So close and yet so far.

Early this morning, that weakening low finally made it into Wisconsin (see water vapor loop from College of DuPage Satellite and Radar Menu). As this has been happening, the northern edge of the clouds has been pushing from Manitoba and Ontario. This is a sign that the old low is finally giving way and the strong high over the Northwest Territories (see NWS WPC Latest North American zoom-in surface map) will finally be able to win out and sweep some of the moisture out. That should finally allow us to see some sunshine today. Our best chance of sun will be in the middle morning through early afternoon. All of the lingering wetness will allow some afternoon clouds to redevelop, but this time, I think we will stay dry. The return of sunshine should allow our high temperatures to be like Bemidji and have temperatures climb into the upper 50's to near 60. That's cooler than average for the end of April, but it will a lot better than the past couple of days.

As a new storm moves from the Southern Rockies across the Plains states, spreading the chance of more severe weather, and heavy rain where they don't need it, it looks like the Canadian high will hang in there a bit more strongly than earlier in the week. We may see some high clouds from this system as it pushes the northern fringe of its showers and thunderstorms across southern Minnesota, but it looks like we will miss out on the rain. So, temperatures will be able to climb back to near 60 tomorrow and into the 60's on Sunday. With more clear skies overnight, lows will drop each morning into the 30's.

Early next week, the high in Canada will push far enough to our east to allow air from west to northwest of us to move in. This air will be brought down the east slopes of the Rockies, so it will be warm and mainly dry. We have a chance of seeing highs in near 70 on Monday. However, a cooler air mass is slated to race out of Canada into the Northeast by Tuesday. Computer forecasts have put us near the fringe of the cool air push, but it looks like we will get some degree of cool down. The latest computer information does have one last really warm day on Tuesday ahead of this front with highs possibly in the 70's. There might be a late day shower or thunderstorm as the cold front pushes through, but this Canadian air won't have a lot of moisture in it.

Hopefully, the new air mass will be sufficiently dry to allow more sunshine in the middle to late portion of next week.

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Confidence Level: "I Will Still Have Dandruff Tomorrow"

Friday 4/29: Becoming sunny this morning, mixed sun and clouds in the afternoon, not nearly as windy or as chilly. High: between 57 and 62. Winds: NE 8-15 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Friday Night: Clearing, a bit of a breeze, and still chilly. Low: between 34 and 38. Winds: ENE 8-15 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Saturday 4/30: More sunshine, fewer afternoon clouds, and continued seasonably cool. High: between 57 and 62. Winds: NE 8-15 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Confidence Level: "A Squirrel Will Squawk At Me" (they really hate me...)

Saturday Night: Partly clear, light winds, and chilly. Low: between 32 and 36. Winds: NE 5-10 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Sunday 5/1: Sunny, lighter winds, and a shade more April-ish. High: between 60 and 65. Winds: NE 5-15 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Sunday Night: Partly clear and still cool. Low: between 35 and 40. Winds: W 5-10 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

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

Monday 5/2: Sunshine through high clouds, breezy, and warmer. High: between 68 and 72. Winds: W 10-20 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Monday Night: Partly clear, breezy, and much milder. Low: between 50 and 55. Winds: W 8-15 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 10%.

Tuesday 5/3: Sunny to partly cloudy, breezy, and warmer. A slight chance of a late day shower or thunderstorm. High: between 74 and 78. Winds: W-NW 10-25 MPH. Chance of measurable rainfall: 20%.

Extended: Turning colder, but drier the second half of next week.

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

Yesterday's High: 45F; Overnight Low (through 2 AM): 39F
St. Cloud Airport Precipitation (through 2 AM Friday): 0.15 inch; SCSU Precipitation (through 2 AM Friday): TBA

Normal Temperatures for April 29 - High: 63F; Low: 39F
Next Update: Monday, May 2, 2016 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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