Spotty thunder threat; Mid 90’s Saturday? Venus transit captured

82 degrees high at MSP Wednesday

3rd straight day above 80 this week

14th day at or above above 80 in 2012

Spotty T-Showers this evening grazing the east metro

Radar: Latest Twin Cities radar loop

Duluth radar: Latest loop

95 degrees latest NAM predicted high temp at MSP Saturday!

Growing thunder threat next 48 hours

Venus transit captured in NOAA animation (see below)

Balmy Greenland? Record warm May days in Greenland

MSP quick look forecast:

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Source: Twin Cities NWS

Gradually growing thunder threat:

We’re gradually ramping up T-Storm chances at the weather lab through Friday morning.

The pleasant high pressure ridge that’s brought us arguably the best weather of the year is breaking down. As it does, look for an increase in scattered showers and T-Storms in Minnesota through Friday.

Coverage may be spotty at first, but more numerous showers should develop, especially Thursday night and Friday.

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Models: Growing rain & thunder chances

Source: Iowa State University

Weekend: The heat is on

We’ve been talking all week about a developing “hot front” that will push in this weekend.

All indications are that a surge of hot, steamy air will push north Saturday and Sunday.

The latest model trends suggest we can’t rule out a passing T-Storm with the arrival of the front Saturday morning.

By Saturday afternoon the NAM model pushes the front north of the metro, which puts the Twin Cities under a breezy, hot & steamy air mass. Temps should easily soar into the 90s…and temps as high as 95 are possible close to the metro and especially in southwest Minnesota.

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Source: Iowa State University

Central and northern Minnesota should see an active thunder threat Saturday night. Winds off the lake will keep things cooler near Lake Superior as usual.

By Sunday the cool front will slice east into a hot unstable air mass.

T-Storms will bust out from west to east along the front, and there is a risk for severe storms according to SPC.

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Source: NOAA/SPC

Venus tranist captured:

Check out this cool NOAA animation of Tuesday Venus transit!

MPR listener Reed DeLapp sent me this nice shot taken from his balcony in St. Paul. Nice work Reed!

Hi Paul,

Figured you might enjoy this photo of the Venus transit, taken from my balcony in St Paul last night. The silhouette is the capitol dome.

Keep up the great work!


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Photo: Reed DeLapp

Balmy Greenland:

Temps hit 76.6 degrees in Greenland last week. That’s the warmest May temps on record, and nearly the warmest reading ever recorded in Greenland.

Here’s an excerpt on the details from Jeff Masters:

The record books for Greenland’s climate were re-written on Tuesday, when the mercury hit 24.8°C (76.6°F) at Narsarsuaq, Greenland, on the southern coast. According to weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera, this is the hottest temperature on record in Greenland for May, and is just 0.7°C (1.3°F) below the hottest temperature ever measured in Greenland. The previous May record was 22.4°C (72.3°F) at Kangerlussuaq (called Sondre Stormfjord in Danish) on May 31, 1991. The 25.2°C at Narsarsuaq on June 22, 1957 is the only June temperature measured in Greenland warmer than yesterday’s 24.8°C reading. Wunderground’s extremes page shows that the all-time warmest temperature record for Greenland is 25.5°C (77.9°F) set on July 26, 1990. The exceptional warmth this week was caused by the combination of an intense ridge of high pressure and a local foehn wind, said the Danish Meteorological Institute.

The unusual May heat has extended to Scotland, which had its hottest May temperature on record on May 25 at Achnagart: 29.3°C (85°F). Greenland’s Narsarsuaq has seen a string of 3 consecutive days over 70°F this week–the 3rd, 7th, and 12th warmest days there since record keeping began in 1941. The ridge of high pressure responsible is expected to stay in place several more days, bringing additional 70° days over Southern Greenland.

The warm May temperatures could be setting the stage for a big Greenland melt season this summer–the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI) is predicting a 50 – 60% that the southern 2/3 of Greenland will experience above-average temperatures this summer. They forecast just a 10 – 15% chance of below-average temperatures.

2011 was a big melt year for the Greenland ice sheet.

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Source: Jeff Masters & Arctic Report Card

The longer term trend of rapidly melting ice in Greenland continues.

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Monthly unsmoothed values of the total mass (in gigatons, Gt), of the Greenland ice sheet from the GRACE satellites. On the horizontal axis, each year begins on 1 January. Each small + symbol is a monthly value. Between 2003 – 2009, Greenland lost an average of 250 gigatons of ice per year. In 2011, the loss was 70% greater than that.

Image credit: WxUndergroud & Arctic Report Card

I’m ready to host the next Holiday Travel cruise to Greenland if called.


  • Chris

    On the Greenland graph, one of us is missing something. It looks like years 2003 to the middle of 2007 the sheet gained mass although gained less each year. The title is CHANGE and is positive during those years. Starting about the middle of 2007 it started lossing mass (at a greater quantity each year). From the period 2003-2011 the net change was about 0. In 2003 it gained about 1,000 and in 2011 it lost 1,000 and looks like a rather straight line between the two points. So only later 2011 did it finally get smaller than in 2003. And on the scale we can say the total mas is ABOUT what it was in later 2002. Depending on what happened before 2002 it might actually still be bigger than it was in 2000, 1998, 1990? The 250 is the acceleration (or deceleration of gain) not the actual change.

    Think of driving in your car, you start to slow at a constant rate. You still move forward, positive distance (change chart), but your velocity changes negatively (negative acceleration). Only when you reach zero velocity does you gain of distance stop, and if you keep negatively accelerating at the same rate your velocity begins to increase in the reverse direction and you back track the distance you previously gained. After the same time forward and back you are where you started for a total distance change of 0.