Morning snow shot, Wednesday thaw and later sunsets this week

Snowy start today

How lovely. Another dose of snow rolled in just in time for our Monday morning commute.

Snow covered roadway at Highway 55 & Peony Lane near Wayzata this morning. Image: MNDOT

A quick hitting clipper drove a swath of snow straight down Interstate 94 into the Twin Cities this morning. The window for metro snow favors the morning hours before noon. The sun may bust out this afternoon.

Most models favor about 1 inch to 2 inches of snowfall with the shot of snow this morning. Roads should be slick for a few hours through midday.

Image: Iowa State University
  • 10 inches season snowfall so far at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (6 inches below average)
  • 11 of 16 days (69 percent) so far in December with snowfall in the metro
  • -10.9 degrees temps vs average in December so far at MSP

The good news? The snow is along the leading edge of some much milder air heading for Minnesota this week. Temps will run as much as 20 to 30 degrees warmer in the coming days.

Image: Twin Cities NWS

Windshield Washer Fluid Alert Wednesday?

Temps climb through the 20s Monday and Tuesday, then a full blow December thaw kicks in Wednesday afternoon. Temps should reach the 30s  in southern Minnesota, and a few thermometers may make a run at 40 degrees along the Interstate 90 corridor by around  3p.m. Wednesday.

Image: NOAA

Gaining evening daylight

It’s a quirky but welcome consequence of Earth’s elliptical orbit, but this week sunsets start getting ever so slightly later in the evening.

Day and night sides of Earth at the instant of the December solstice (2013 December 21 at 17:11 Universal Time). You can see that this solstice happens just after sunrise for the Hawaiian Islands and New Zealand, noon for eastern North America and the Caribbean, sunset in Africa and midnight in Asia. Image via Earth and Moon Viewer

Sunsets start getting slightly later each evening before the winter solstice which occurs Saturday at 11:11 a.m. We gain 9 minutes of evening daylight by New Year’s Eve!

Sunset times in Minneapolis for the rest of December. Image: sunrisesunset.com

Here’s a great explanation as to why this happens, and everything you wanted to know (and more) about the winter solstice from EarthSky.

Image: NASA

Keep an eye out for snow Monday morning, and enjoy the moderating temps this week!