Last Day to eat yourself into a food coma out at the Minnesota State Fair. The only one staying cool yesterday was Princess Kay of the Milky Way in the Dairy Building. It was hot and dusty out at the State Fairgrounds yesterday. Yes, we need rain, preferably at night, preferably tomorrow. There's a very slight chance of thunder today, a better chance closer to the Iowa border. The next chance of (widespread) showers and T-storms comes Tuesday night ahead of a cool front.
Labor Day Severe Threat. A ripple of low pressure tracking along the leading edge of drier air may set off a few severe storms with large hail from Omaha to Des Moines later today. Map: SPC.
“We don’t have much skill in forecasting drought development,” he said. One reason for this, scientists say, is that the computer models forecasters use don’t accurately capture the ways that land surface conditions interact with the atmosphere. The models tend to have more skill in predicting drought development or tendency out to a few weeks in advance, but beyond that, they have major limitations." - from a story at Climate Central; details below. Photo: AP.
"Leslie". The latest tropical storm northeast of Puerto Rico is forecast to become a hurricane, possibly threatening Bermuda by the end of the week. Odds favor a turn out to sea, but a few models are pulling Leslie closer to the east coast of the USA. Map: NHC and Ham Weather.
* the latest U.S. Drought Monitor is here.
Photo credit above:
Photo credit above: "High winds from hurricane Isaac toppled signs and caused flooding and power outages in New Orleans Wednesday." Ann Hermes/The Christian Science Monitor.
"...The fact is, many people lack the resources to escape. Having no money, no mode of transportation and no friends or family in safe places means no choice but to weather the storm." - from an NBC News story on why some people won't (or can't) evacuate to a safe spot before a hurricane.
Photo credit above: "A man makes his way down a flooded street in a boat in the aftermath of Isaac Friday, Aug. 31, 2012, in Ironton, La. Isaac is now a tropical depression, with the center on track to cross Arkansas on Friday and southern Missouri on Friday night, spreading rain through the regions." (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Photo credit above: "Two sailboats, the Sweet Dreams, foreground and the Caribe, were swept from their docks by Hurricane Isaac to the parking lot in front and beside Shaggy's at Pass Christian, Mississipi, on Friday, August 31, 2012." (Tim Isbell/Biloxi Sun Herald/MCT)
New England Flood Potential. NOAA HPC prints out some 3-5"+ rainfall amounts from New England into New York City and the Delaware Valley, another area of 2-4" rains over the next 5 days across Georgia and Alabama.
Photo credit above: Vincent Laforet, Pool, File - Associated Press). "In this Aug. 30, 2005 photo, floodwaters from Hurricane Katrina pour through a levee along Innter Harbor Navigational Canal near downtown New Orleans, LA, a day after Katrina passed through the city."
Photo credit above: "Tony Miranda takes a break from clearing out his home after it was flooded by Hurricane Isaac in LaPlace, La., Friday Aug. 31, 2012." (AP Photo/The Advocate. Arthur D. Lauck)
"Ask Paul". Weather-related Q&A:
I’m a big fan of your blog and MN sunny days. Now the question… I live in Champlin (TC) and I’ve already noticed that a part of my Maple tree is changing colors as well as the Sumacs and Weigelia bushes but at the same time the summer flowers are still going strong, meanwhile, the critters are shedding like crazy and the geese look like they are getting ready to head south… So do you think we’re heading for an early fall colors (since we had such an early Spring) or is all part of my crazy imagination… ???
Marianella - I have never seen any research suggesting that leaves ripening early is in any way a predictive tool for the autumn or winter to come. In reality those yellow sugar maples are probably a reaction, to a lower sun angle coupled with unusually cool nights in mid-August, and most important: a growing drought across southern Minnesota. If it snows in mid-September (highly doubtful) you'll be able to tell me "told you so!"
What is your prediction for this winter, 2012-2013? Warmer, less snow?
Thank you, you are the best!
Thanks Cate - you may not feel that way after you get my forecast, more gut feel than anything based on science. Winters have been trending milder, with less snow in recent years. That's hardly breaking news. It seems 1 in 4 or 1 in 5 winters is a "real, butt-kicking Minnesota winter" with significant cold and snow. We're heading into an El Nino, which correlates with milder temperatures and somewhat less snow for northern-tier states. I suspect we'll see more snow than last winter (22 whopping inches in the metro), but less than 2010-2011, when 86" fell. My hunch: 40-50" snow; colder than last winter, but not as severe as two winters ago. Time will tell.
In his weather page in the Star Tribune a couple of weeks ago Paul mentioned 2 weather apps he liked best. One he had done but no longer gets money from, and another one. I wrote them down and have lost the paper. I would appreciate it if you would send me these names.
Sue - my favorites are My-Cast Weather Radar (which sends out severe weather alerts in addition to Doppler radar and even lightning strike data (for a surcharge). The other is RadarScope, which is still the best Doppler app out there, in my humble opinion. Neither is free, but if you're a weather enthusiast you'll get your money's worth. Full disclosure: My-Cast was my previous company, which we sold to Garmin in 2007. I no longer have any involvement with the company and don't receive any $$ for recommending the app. But it's partially my baby, and I'm happy to see it getting so much national attention. The team at Digital Cyclone has done an amazing job upgrading the app and keeping it current. I would add one more (free) app to the list: "Victory Rides" for Polaris, which is a current client. Again, the app is free - we receive no compensation for the sale of this app on the iTunes store. Good luck!
50 Shades of Baffled
"This drink's on me" the server at the 331 Club in Minnapolis said Saturday. "Just promise me a nice, long Indian Summer." Done.
There is some precedent for saying this. 1). We're sliding into an El Nino warming phase of the Pacific. 2). A warming climate has lengthened our autumns in recent decades. According to Dr. Mark Seeley the last 10 Novembers have been "warm enough to play golf in November", which he called "historically unprecedented".
If only I could play golf.
Ice forms on lakes later each year (ask any ice fisherman). Many years we don't have to drag out heavy parkas and gloves until December.
Our winter outlook is an enigma wrapped in a riddle, boxed up in a mystery. Anyone who tells you they have it all figured out is trying to sell you something.
We've salvaged a fairly extraordinary holiday weekend, but a weak frontal boundary may spark a few showers and T-showers today. Best chance? Early morning, again around the dinner hour. I expect enough midday sun for upper 80s.
We cool off this week; it'll feel like September in 3 days. But long range guidance brings another surge of heat into Minnesota next week. A few more 90s in September?
Count on it.
Photo credit above: Colin McMillen/CC BY 2.0
Photo credit above: "Geoengineering could replicate the cooling effects of a massive volcanic eruption as a tool to reduce climate change." Photo via Wikimedia Commons
"The same human economic activity that has brought freedom and opportunity to billions has also increased the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. While the scope and longterm consequences of this are the subject of ongoing scientific research, common sense dictates that the United States should take measured and reasonable steps today to reduce any impact on the environment. Those steps, if consistent with our global competitiveness will also be good for our national security, our energy independence, and our economy."Photo credit above: "No longer a Republican concern." (JOHN MCCONNICO / AP)