Tornadoes, floods and freeze warnings in 24 hours

Truth in (weather) advertising

If truth in advertising was a thing two hundred years ago, I can only imagine how the brochure would have looked to Minnesota’s pioneers.

Welcome to Minnesota! In this vast and beautiful land you may be dodging tornadoes one day, and fighting off frost the next. But the summers are worth it! And there’s no road construction, because roads have not yet really been invented here. Floods, mosquitoes, blizzards. There’s never a dull weather moment in this new land! Future meteorologists will love it here.

Alas I digress.

A month’s worth of rain

The forecast for multi-inch rainfall this week worked out very well. Many locations have picked up more than a month’s worth of rain this week.

Here’s a closer look at more multi-inch rainfall totals over the past 24 hours via the Twin Cities NWS.

Mark Seeley has more perspective in this week’s Weather Talk blog post. Here’s a preview.

Topic: T-storms, tornadoes, hail, and record rainfalls

Monday through Wednesday of this week (May 15-17) brought severe weather to the region, including severe thunderstorms, large hail, flash flooding, and tornadoes. The tornadoes occurred in western Wisconsin (Polk, Barron, and Rusk Counties), with the most damage coming from an EF-2 storm (winds 111-135 mph) that passed through Chetek, WI destroying a mobile home park, injuring over 20 people, and causing one death. Large hail was reported from many eastern Minnesota communities, including 2.5 inch diameter hail near Northfield.

Many climate observers reported new daily record rainfall amounts this week. Some examples include:
May 15; 4.94″ at Altura (Winona County), 3.43″ at Elgin (Olmsted County), 2.96″ at Hokah (Houston County)2.25″ at Owatonna (Steele County), 2.00″ at La Crescent (Winona County), and 1.70″ at Rosemount (Dakota County)
May 16: 1.95″ at Red Wing Dam, and 1.40″ at Duluth
May 17: 2.55″ at Jordan (Scott County), 2.45″ at Dawson (Lac Qui Parle County), 1.95″ at Minnesota City (Winona County), and 1.90″ at Montevideo (Lac Qui Parle County)

Many other observers reported total amounts of rainfall this week that exceeded 3 inches and brought a halt to planting of crops around the state. Over 40 climate stations in Minnesota have already seen about normal May rainfall amounts, and that is just for the first 18 days of the month.

Tornado warnings to freeze warnings

From tornadoes to freeze warnings in 24 hours? I call that job security. Chilly Canadian high pressure and clear skies will produce frost and freezing conditions north and east of the Twin Cities Friday morning.

Twin Cities NWS

The inner urban Twin Cities core should escape any frost threat overnight, but frost may get as close as the far northern suburbs.

Including the cities of Little Falls, Princeton, Mora, Cambridge, Center City, Osceola, Rice Lake, Ladysmith, Menomonie,Chippewa Falls, and Eau Claire
220 PM CDT Thu May 18 2017


The National Weather Service in Twin Cities/Chanhassen has issued a Frost Advisory, which is in effect from midnight tonight to 8 AM CDT Friday.

* TEMPERATURE…32 to 35 degrees.

* IMPACTS…sensitive vegetation may be damaged or killed if
precautions are not taken.

Temperatures will fall into the 20s in parts of northeast Minnesota overnight.

Cool and unsettled

The weekend looks cool and unsettled overall. Showers graze southern Minnesota Friday. Saturday looks just plain wet. Sunday is breezy and cool, but also the better day this weekend. And after Saturday that’s a low bar.

NOAA GFS via tropical tidbits.

More rain

I’m just the messenger.

Warmer next week

Can we reschedule the weekend for early next week please?

NOAA temps for MSP via Weather Bell

Stay frosty Minnesota.