August 15th: Home stretch of summer?

Summer 2011: Warm, Wet & Stormy:

With about 80% of summer 2011 in the books now it looks like Summer 2011 will go down warm, wet & stormy. Some numbers.

+3 Temps are running about 3 degrees above average in Minnesota for summer 2011. (MSP: June +1.1 July +5.6, Aug +2.5)

+1.5″ Rainfall is also running high in most areas of the state. One notable exception is the North Shore where some rivers are at a trickle this week. (More on that and my trip up north in this afternoon’s blog.)

301 Number of severe weather warnings issued in 2011 by the Twin Cities NWS. (366 last year, 141 in 2009)

August 15th: “Summerfall”

It’s too early to write off summer yet, but August 15th on the calendar is a reminder that Summer 2011 is in the home stretch in Minnesota.

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Colorful maple leaf at the weather lab today!

The good news for summer lovers is that we still have a good 3-4 weeks of true summer like weather ahead.

Still, there are many signs that the season is about to turn in the weeks ahead.

-Meteorological summer ends August 31st.

-3 weeks until Labor Day, the “unofficial” end of summer in Minnesota.

-We’re now losing 3 minutes of daylight per day, and we’ve lost a full 1 hour and 37 minutes since late June!

There’s no need to rush into fall, as my experience is that the first “real” fall cold front sails south from Canada sometime around September 15th, give or take a few days. Still there are signs a cool front may bring a touch of frost to northeast Minnesota by next Monday…not unusual for late August in the Arrowhead.

I often remind people this time of year that the best 2 months of weather for getting outdoors in Minnesota usually lies ahead!

Will summer linger in 2011?

There is at least one indicator that says summer may hang on a little this year. The CPC 90 day outlook paints a higher probability for a warmer than average fall in the Upper Midwest.

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The best chances for rain this week will be today in western Minnesota (and I can’t rule out a stray shower reaching the metro today)…then late Tuesday and late Friday. Look for plenty of fine summery weather in between!

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  • Matt B

    Are the deviations from average you posted based off of the 1980-2010 averages? If they are, could you post how far off we are from the 1970-2000 averages for comparisons sake?

  • Paul Huttner

    Hi Matt B:

    Averages for Jun & July would be from the 1970-2000 data sets. August is not in the books yet, but the new 30 year averages take effect then.

    Keep in mind that our summer averages in the new data set don’t change much, the biggest changes are in the winter, especially at night.