Saturday, September 10, 2011

Weather Headlines For September 11th - Northern Lights, Cold Air Moves In, Tropical Update

Other Fun Happenings This Weekend
Northern Lights were very active last night and will likely be that way through the weekend. Take a look at the picture below snapped by Spencer Hilgers from Waconia on Friday night. Spencer said that he was able to capture the Big Dipper as well as the northern lights. Unfortunately, the near full moon is having an impact on our view. It is casting more ambient light on the landscape, which may be washing out the subtle colors. Also note that in Spencer's picture that the northern lights are quite low on the horizon. MAKE SURE you have a good, non obstructed view to the north. At our latitude, those northern lights generally appear very low on the horizon, so looking straight up won't do the trick.
If you happen to get a good shot of the northern lights send them to me and I will feature them in the blog!

Saturday Forecast - Aurora 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 Forecast - Aurora 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.

 Big Changes Ahead
The image below shows "ROTSL" or the Remnants of Tropical Storm Lee still hanging out in the Ohio River Valley - keep in mind "ROTSL" and Katia have been the reason why our weather has been so stagnant as of late.
Monday's Storm System
As "ROTSL" and Katia finally move out, our first storm system drops into the lower 48. This will be our first blast of cold air from Canada... likely to move in by Monday night/Tuesday

Midweek Storm System
The 2nd blast of cold air comes in Tuesday Night/Wednesday and settles in through midweek across the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes Region. This will likely be some of the coldest air we've seen drop into the lower 48 since May, nearly 4 months ago.

Tropical Update - Maria
Maria continues to churn towards the U.S. - the good news is that the latest forecast from the National Hurricane Center has Maria steering east of the U.S. but not before tearing through the same locations that Irene did nearly 3 weeks ago Tropical Storm or even Hurricane strength conditions can be expected through these areas through the weekend/early next week.

Tropical Update - Nate
 As Texans deal with more drought and wildfires, they only hope for widespread rainfall in the near term appears to be fading rapidly with the updated forecast track of Nate who seems to be drifting west into Mexico.

Thanks for checking in, have a good rest of your weekend
Meteorologist Todd Nelson