Arctic New Year’s Eve; 2012 in virtual tie for warmest year in metro

-15F at Roseau early this morning

-29F wind chill at Park Rapids this morning

Single digits for much of the metro today

-1F in the metro by midnight

-5F in most of the metro to open 2013 early New Year’s Day

61.9% of the lower 48 USA covered by snow as of today

18.9% 1 year ago on December 31st, 2011

Cold eases starting Wednesday

Light snow chance with Wednesday clipper but no major storms in sight

220 ql.PNG

Friday thaw? Temps make a run at 32F Friday PM

Early January thaw? Models hinting at a string of 30s next week?

50.8F average (mean) temperature for 2012 so far at MSP Airport

1931 warmest year on record in the metro (also 50.8F)

+5.1F vs. average at MSP this year – like living in Omaha

Arctic New Year:

This is how the weather maps are supposed to look as we move into January.

A frigid dome of Arctic air is oozing south from Canada. Temps hovered near -30F near the core of the cold on the north end of Lake Winnipeg this morning, and I saw -15F at Roseau.

Respectable chill levels will hold tonight into the 1st hours of 2013with temps near -20F up north and -5F in the metro and southern Minnesota.

220 MN t1 MN.png

Image: NOAA

By the time the ball drops in New York, temps will be approaching zero in the metro…and may dip to about -3F by midnight in much of the metro. A slight north flow from the downtown Urban Heat Island (UHI) could keep MSP Airport hovering near zero by midnight. Plan for warmth if you will be out ringing in 2013 tonight. You car may groan disapproval… if it starts at all after midnight.

Temps near -5F will be common in the metro by Tuesday morning.

USA: White New Year’s 2013

2013 opens with extensive snow cover extending all the way south to Arkansas and parts of Tennessee.

The post Christmas snow storm left a trail of snow in the Southern Plains and Ohio Valley.

A full 61.9% of the lower 48 USA is now snow covered, compared with just 18.9% in the “non winter of 2011-’12.”

220 sc.PNG


The extra snow helps air masses be more effective at “radiational cooling” at night…which can lead to overnight low temps a good 5 to 10 degrees colder than over bare ground.

1 1 1 1 1 rad cool.jpg

Minnesota 2012: Just shy of the warmest year on record?

Persistent warmth has been a remarkable feature in Minnesota and the USA in 2012. As of Sunday, the annual mean temperature in the Twin Cities was tied for the warmest year on record with 1931 at 50.8F.

220 MSP2_Annual_Mean_Temp_b_2012.jpg

Image: Twin Cities NWS

Twin Cities NWS will crunch the final numbers, but it looks like our New Year’s Eve cold snap may cause 2012 to fall jusy shy of grabbing the title for the warmest year. So far it looks like the Twin Cities and St. Cloud may finish as the 2nd warmest year on record.

Depending on which (30-year) data set you use, the Twin Cities (and most of Minnesota) ran about +5.1F vs. average this year. That’s more like living in the climate of Omaha, Nebraska.

January Thaw in sight?

The arctic chill will ease starting on Wednesday as temps approach 20F in the metro.

By Friday, milder Pacific air mass will slide in form the west. Temps may approach the thawing point…and I see some 30s in southern & western Minnesota by Friday afternoon.

A cool front should bring 20s back this weekend.

There are signs of a bigger, more prolonged thaw next week.

220 euro.PNG

Image: Norwegian Met Institute

A mild Pacific flow could push temps into the 30s for several days.

Will our “January Thaw” arrive a little early in 2013?

Stay tuned.


Comments are closed.