Big temperature & cloud variations likely again Sunday

Yep, Saturday was a classic forecast “bust” at the weather lab. So what happened? How can a forecast go that askew?

Persistent southeast winds and a very strong temperature inversion (sunny and 61 degrees at 3,700 feet) combined to keep just enough moisture and lingering cool air to sustain the cloud deck that held temps down over eastern Minnesota, including the metro.

13 inv.PNG

Inversion and pesky southeast wind held clouds in place Saturday in the metro.

Source: Twin Cities NWS

Instead of highs in the 70s, we stalled in the 50s around the metro.

Folks in western Minnesota enjoyed the weather we thought (and the models predicted) would slide east into the metro Saturday.

Highs Saturday:

Redwood Falls 64

Fargo 72

Worthington 72

Pipestone 81

Sioux Falls 83

Sioux City, IA 90

Warm fronts and inversions are some of the toughest things to forecast in advance. Simply put, we’re not perfect and I missed this one. And of course, it happened on a Saturday. You don’t catch nearly as much grief if you bust on a Tuesday. That’s just the nature of our business.

Mixed clouds Sunday:

It looks like there will be enough of our cool easterly flow to keep clouds and fog around Sunday morning. We may see some breaks and at least some sun Sunday afternoon. If we do, temps should make at least the 60s. If not, we could again be mired in the 50s. If the clouds break sooner, temps could soar into the 70s.

13 nws wsx.png

Source: Twin Cities NWS

Still, I expect western Minnesota will again see more sun and much warmer temps. Highs in the 80s and even a 90 degree reading are possible around Luverne or Pipestone Sunday.

If you want to guarantee sun and warm weather Sunday, maybe this is the day to visit those distant relatives in Pipestone or Redwood Falls?

Hoping for the best with some glimmers of PM sun Sunday…but still expecting some clouds to be stubborn to move on.


  • Chad

    Thanks for the explaination, Paul! I was wondering if as a result of the early seasonal warming, we might stand a chance at an earlier and perhaps more dynamic tornado season? Is there any science in meteorology that would suggest that?