A pleasant weekend for the autumnal equinox

Friday brought coolish temperatures and isolated light rain showers to Minnesota.  High temperatures have been mainly in the 50s in the north and west and 60s from the east central to the southeast.  A breeze from the northwest and persistent clouds have held the temperatures below seasonal normals.

Lumpy clouds have kept us cool with isolated showers. Source:NOAA/University of Wisconsin-Madison.

This weekend high pressure will build in for Saturday to provide a lovely fall day.  The day likely will begin with some frost across northern Minnesota, especially in the far northwest where a Frost Advisory centered around Thief River Falls is in effect from 3 a.m. until 9 a.m.

Highs on Saturday should range from the upper 50s to the upper 60s.

Then a change to warmer weather will come on Sunday as we get on the back side of the high pressure and are treated to an increasing breeze from the southeast.  That will mark the beginning of a significant warmup for next week.

Sunday will be the beginning of a warmup going well into next week. Source:NWS Chanhassen.

If you will be up north, note that some nice fall color has been developing.  Some of the best of it, as reported by the Minnesota DNR, is north of Grand Rapids around Bigfork and Effie and also in northwestern Minnesota from Grygla to Roseau.

Fall color is coming on up north. Source:DNR.

Also check the northern sky at night. The Earth is in a stream of solar wind that has been causing auroras around the Arctic Circle, so there is a chance that they could be spotted farther south.

There is significant weather going on on the other side of the globe.  Super Typhoon Usagi is poised to move across the Batan Islands and pass between the Philippines and Taiwan.

Super Typhoon Usagi will pass north of the Philippines and south of Taiwan. Source:Joint Typhoon Warning Center.

Current maximum sustained winds are 150 mph with gusts to 180 mph.  The forecast track for this big guy would take it right toward Hong Kong.  Fortunately, the winds are forecast to weaken before it arrives on Sunday.

Super Typhoon Usagi is forecast to track toward Hong Kong. Source:Joint Typhoon Warning Center.

Enjoy the autumnal equinox at 3:44 p.m. CDT Sunday.  At that time Earth’s axis will be inclined neither toward nor away from the sun.  The sun will appear directly overhead at noon as seen from the equator (if you are in Quito, Ecuador, for example).  For all of us, the sun will rise due east and set due west on Sunday.  And here in the Northern Hemisphere the days will keep getting shorter and the nights longer for the next three months.