"We know that in September we will wander through the warm winds of summer's wreckage. We will welcome summer's ghost" wrote Henry Rollins. The ghost of hot fronts, drippy dew points and scorching heat indices will be on full display into Saturday; highs flirt with 90F both days. Not quite as oppressive as last week, but sticky enough to get your full attention.
Severe drought has returned to portions of central Minnesota. The Twin Cities are in a moderate drought, along with 53 percent of Minnesota. Nearly 80 percent of the state is "abnormally dry". It feels like 2012.
Deja vu, all over again.
I'll be surprised if our "flash drought" lasts as long - or becomes as severe as late 2012 and early 2013. Weather models show a good chance of T-storms Monday, another surge of rain by next Wednesday as cooler air approaches.
The well-dressed Minnesota will walk around in a sweatshirt and shorts: a cool break next week gives way to more 80s the following weekend. From 33F at Embarrass Thursday morning to 90F the next two afternoons; Mother Nature is suffering an identity crisis.
Summer or autumn? With any luck a slow transition to cooler weather will spark more substantial rains.
- August rainfall totals were below historical averages in most MInnesota counties. In many communities, especially in east central Minnesota counties, August precipitation totals fell short of long-term averages by two or more inches.
- Across much of the southern three-quarters of Minnesota, July-plus-August rainfall totals were 4-6" below normal. Rainfall deficits, along with very hot late-August temperatures, led to a rapidly developing drought situation across much of the Midwest.
- The U.S. Drought Monitor places an area of central MInnesota in the "Severe Drought" category. Large sections of the rest of MInnesota are rated n the "Moderate Drought" category.
- Ample autumn rains will be required to refill the soil moisture profile and to recharge groundwater and surface water systems.
* the August 2013 Global Catastrophe Recap PDF from Aon Benfield is here.
Photo credit above: "A Hotshot fire crew member rests near a controlled burn operation at Horseshoe Meadows, as crews continue to fight the Rim Fire near Yosemite National Park in California, Sept. 4, 2013." (U.S. Forest Service, Mike McMillan).
* sunset photo above (Pelican Lake) courtesy of Heidi Rusch.
The record-setting impacts of Sandy were largely attributable to the massive storm surge and resulting inundation from the onshore-directed storm path coincident with high tide. However, climate-change related increases in sea level have nearly doubled today’s annual probability of a Sandy-level flood recurrence as compared to 1950. Ongoing natural and human-induced forcing of sea level ensures that Sandy-level inundation events will occur more frequently in the future from storms with less intensity and lower storm surge than Sandy..."
* Climate Central has more on the doubling risk of Sandy-scope storm surges.
Photo credit above:
* the full report, all 104 pages (PDF) of the report referenced above is here, courtesy of the AMS, the American Meteorological Society.
File Photo above: Martin Luff.