Precipitation likely to bypass moisture starved Minnesota River Valley

After a mild and sun splashed Thanksgiving day, Friday looked more November-like. Temperatures have also fallen back from yesterday. The high temperature of 59 degrees at the Twin Cities International Airport tied the record for November 25th.

Changes are continuing to enfold. A strenghtening jet stream will crave out a long wave trough in the Nation’s midsection during the next twenty-four hours. Here’s the NAM forecast at about the twenty thousand foot level for Saturday.


Notice the jet core maximum of 90kts in the Texas Panhandle. That strong jet will be balanced by a surge of warmer air and moisture north into the Ohio Valley. Most of the precipitation from this system will fall as rain. However the wrap-around moisture will meet up with enough cold air in Minnesota’s Arrowhead to produce a mixture of freezing rain and snow on Saturday. A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for parts of northeast Minnesota, including International Falls, Ely, Isabela, Bigfork, Hibbing and Grand Marais.

Several inches of snow may accumulate from Ely to Silver Bay during Saturday afternoon. Unfortunately much of the southwest part of the state will miss out on needed precipitation. The drought continues to worsen over Minnesota River Valley.

Here is NOAA’s precipitation forecast for the next sixty hours. Note the quarter to about a third of an inch of liquid equivalent that is possible in far northeast Minnesota.


The Minnesota State Climate Office is closely tracking the dry conditions. Their most recent report indicates the deficiency of moisture since late July is now over ten inches in some locations. Chances for significant precipitation do not look good as we enter the last couple days of November. We are on track to notch the driest autumn season on record in in south central Minnesota.


The strong weather maker to our east will be slow moving. Look for the most significant rain from Alabama to Indiana on Saturday and Sunday. Sunday’s travel in our neck of the woods should be on the quiet side, but chilly.

Colder air will dive into the Red River Valley of the North on Saturday. Gusty northwest winds, ushering in seasonal temperatures, could approach forty miles an hour from west central to south central Minnesota. Expect much cooler sensible temperatures for your Saturday afternoon due to the brisk winds.


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