The Cruelest Month
No, January in Minnesota is not for the timid. But we're enjoying half a winter: plenty of cold, but legitimate snow storms have become as rare as a Congressional compromise.
Remember when it would snow, fairly reliably, every 2-4 days? Back when weather was leading the local news every other day? 3 inches on the ground; 16.8 inches for the winter - almost 7 inches below average, to date.
Commutes have been easier, with 3 days of an inch or more of snow (including that big dump of 10.5 inches on December 9). By now we should have picked up 6 days with an inch or more of snowy goodness.
Droughts are stubborn things. We may be days away from barge traffic grinding to a halt on the Mississippi. I keep waiting for the pattern to change; for southern moisture to reach our lofty latitude. I'll send up a flare when that glorious day arrives.
In the meantime Sunday shivers give way to a symphony of gurgling drain spouts and drippy icicles this week; 3 or 4 days near 32 F.
A sloppy southern storm brushes us with a little rain and drizzle late Thursday - a push of cold air next week sweeping any moisture into the Great Lakes; a few subzero nights expected the third week of January.
Good sleeping weather.
Coldest Air Of Winter? The models are trending colder again for the third week of January; the latest GFS run hinting at 3-6 subzero nights, maybe even a subzero daytime high or two, with the very coldest weather predicted between January 16-19. Still time to troll your favorite web site for a discount fare to somewhere toasty.
Twin Cities (1873-2012) Rank Year Average ----------------- 1. 1931 50.8 2012 50.8 3. 1987 49.7 4. 2006 49.3 5. 1998 48.8
Photo credit above: "A aerial view of the damage in Mantoloking, N.J., caused by Hurricane Sandy, Oct. 31, 2012. President Barack Obama toured New Jersey's ravaged coastline with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in a display of big-government muscle and bipartisan harmony." (Doug Mills/The New York Times)
‘If we were in the same conditions now, 30 years ago, we`d be running into problems much, much, sooner,’ Col. Hall said. The rock removal does stop traffic for 16 hours every day. But the Coast Guard, the river`s `traffic cop`, unclogs the jam overnight. ‘During the time that the Army Corps contractors are removing rock, which is roughly 6:00am – 10:00pm at night, we gather up all the vessels that are waiting north and south,’ Capt. Teschenford said. ‘They actually do a quick survey of the area where rocks were removed and we open it up. ‘