Friday, September 9, 2011

Weather Headlines for September 10th - Tropical System Move Out, Cold Air Moves In, Weekend Northern Lights

Paul Sundberg Photography
Paul sent me a great picture of a black bear family that decided to check out Paul's wildlife pond. Paul must have built a pretty sturdy bridge across there to hold the weight of a mama bear and her 3 cubs. Those bears have be pretty active right now (early September) as they search for anything to eat to get ready for the cold season lurking in the not too distant future. Great shot Paul, must have been a neat experience!

High Falls at Grand Portage State Park, MN

Weather Setup
As the remnants of tropical storm Lee, finally dry out over the Ohio River Valley and as Hurricane Katia lifts into the Canadian Maritimes over the weekend, the stagnant weather pattern that we've had over the course of the last week will begin to break down.

Temps Aloft Tell A Story
Take a look at the image below - this shows the temperatures a few thousand feet of the ground and helps to show where certainly weather features are. Note, "ROTSL", Katia and Nate - ROTSL and Katia have been the roadblock for the last week or so keeping the heat and sunny weather across the western half of the nation.

Temps Aloft on Monday
Finally, "ROTSL" and Katia are gone by early next week and at that point, we'll have our first system dropping into the Lower 48. A cool front from Canada will touch of showers and thunderstorms and bring some very chilly air to the Great Lakes Region by the middle of next week.

Temps Aloft by Midweek
Take a look at the cold blast of air coming in on the backside of that storm system by the middle of the week. This could be some of the coldest air to move into the Upper Midwest or the Great Lakes Region in nearly 4 months
Snow?? Really??
The sick part about this next cold blast is that it could be cold enough a few thousand feet off the ground that light snow (nothing significant) could be falling along and north of the international border Tuesday Night and early Wednesday around the Arrowhead of MN and around the northern Great Lakes Region. The image below shows the precipitation type expected during that time period. Green is liquid and blue is snow. ISH!

Tropical Update
I don't want to focus on Katia because she is nearly out of the picture, but Maria and Nate are worth watching.

Update on Maria
Maria is still moving through the Atlantic Basin on a track through the northern Caribbean and nearly Puerto Rico through the weekend. I'm still a bit concerned with her track through the middle and end of next week and she could get very close the the Eastern Seaboard. Her track looks a little like Irene's did back in August.

Update on Nate
The problem with Nate is that he is moving so slowly, any slight shift in his track now will mean a big change in his track through the next 5 days. The latest forecast by the National Hurricane Center has Nate drifting into central Mexico through early next week, which is not good news, considering Texas is burning up and would welcome the sign of any tropical moisture. This could still change, but it's looking a little less likely now.

Northern Lights Forecast for the Weekend - Looking Great!!
Don't forget to keep an eye out for northern lights this weekend, especially if you live in the northern latitudes. Storms on the sun earlier this week sent charged particles towards Earth and now they have arrived. The forecast is quite impressive for the weekend, so get out and check it out
If you get any good shots, send them to me:
I'll feature them in the weather blog over the weekend!

Friday Night Forecast - EXTREME
Forecast: Auroral activity will be high. Weather permitting, highly active auroral displays will be visible overhead from Inuvik, Yellowknife, Rankin and Igaluit to Juneau, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Thunder Bay and Sept-Iles, and visible low on the horizon from Seattle, Des Moines, Chicago, Cleveland, Boston, and Halifax.

 Saturday Night Forecast
Forecast: Auroral activity will be moderate. Weather permitting, moderate displays will be visible overhead from Inuvik, Yellowknife, Rankin, and Igaluit to as far south as Whitehorse, Ft. McMurray, James Bay and visible low on the horizon as far south as Prince Rupert, Calgary, Minot, Bemidji, Stevens Point, Traverse City and Quebec City, Canada.

Sunday Night Forecast
Forecast: Auroral activity will be active. Weather permitting, active auroral displays will be visible overhead from Inuvik, Yellowknife, Rankin and Igaluit to Juneau, Edmonton, Winnipeg and Sept-Iles, and visible low on the horizon from Vancouver, Great Falls, Pierre, Madison, Lansing, Ottawa, Portland and St. Johns.

Thanks for checking in, have a good weekend!
Meteorologist Todd Nelson