Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Quietness Of Local Weather (For Once)

Today marks the fourth consecutive dry day around here -- we haven't had four straight days without a shower around since our foray into the 90's at the end of May and beginning of June.  It's been a wondrous balance of puffy clouds some afternoons, plenty of sunshine most every other afternoon, and temperatures that have been incredibly tolerable by summer standards.

We're the lucky ones after two weeks of tropical torrent...payback and reward for eight inches of rain in a week's time couldn't be sweeter.

Such luck can't be shared nationally or beyond, however.

Minneapolis has had several rounds of severe weather in the last 24 hours, producing not just high winds (there was a wind gust to over 80 mph in Central Minnesota early Friday morning) but also very heavy rain.  Doppler radar estimates (below) suggest some parts of Western and Southern Minnesota (along Interstate 90) picked up over six inches of rain since yesterday.

The culprit for this is a warm frontal boundary stretching across the state, tied to a low pressure disturbance that's centered in Manitoba.  The system will gradually push east (it will stay north of us but the trailing cool front could trigger a thunderstorm in our area on Tuesday) and the rain threat should ease for a while, but not before at least one more day of craptastic weather out in the Upper Midwest later today as the threat for severe weather would continue.

Canada's also having its share of pretty bad weather -- three people were killed in the Calgary area and 75,000 were forced from their homes in the wake of significant flooding through the city's downtown as upwards of two to three inches of rain fell in Calgary and communities to their west on Thursday and early Friday.  This was tied to an upper level disturbance that moved through the Rockies on Thursday, the same disturbance that will nudge Minnesota's nasty weather out of the area.

Our run of crappy weather earlier this month has ended, at least briefly, although we will be looking at an increased risk of thunderstorms next week.  First, daytime heating from a warm airmass around our region will provide a small but scattered risk for thunder each afternoon from atmospheric instability. Second, the front tied to Minnesota's bad weather will cross us on Tuesday with an increased chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon.