It turns out we had good reason to be on the air live covering the tornado warning for the southwest metro Wednesday night.
The Twin Cities NWS announced today they have confirmed an 8th tornado from Wednesday night’s outbreak. The tornado near Prior Lake was and EF-0 packing 70 mph winds. It produced minor damage, and the tornado’s path was a very close call for Mystic Lake Casino.
— NWS Twin Cities (@NWSTwinCities) August 18, 2017
Heaviest rainfall in 5 years
It turns out Wednesday’s rainfall totals from Redwood Falls was the highest 24-hour rainfall totals recorded in Minnesota since the 2012 Duluth floods.
Here’s more resolution from the Minnesota DNR Climate Working Group.
This was the most widespread and intense rainfall event of the year (to date) in Minnesota, with 1-2 inch totals covering approximately 50,000 square miles, or about 60% of the state. Totals of greater than three inches were concentrated in a multi-county area in western and central Minnesota, generally centered on the Minnesota River. The largest official rainfall report came from Redwood Falls, where a volunteer with the National Weather Service’s cooperative observer program reported 8.12 inches in 24 hours. Two “unofficial” automated gauges in the area actually reported more rain, but the 8.12 inches recorded at Redwood Falls is the largest official 24-hour precipitation total in Minnesota since June 20th, 2012, when Two Harbors reported 10.45 inches during the worst flood in that area’s recorded history.
A pic from my parent's town with all the flooding. This is a ditch that's full, so that's about 5-6 feet of water in there. 😲 pic.twitter.com/44mZNapwRw
— Amy (@AmyJDub) August 17, 2017
10 years since the southeast Minnesota and Wisconsin mega rain
Do you remember this from 10 years ago today?
— MnDOT District 6 (@mndotsoutheast) August 18, 2017
Here’s a good summary of that event from the La Crosse NWS.
— NWS La Crosse (@NWSLaCrosse) August 18, 2017
Forecast: Summery weekend
We dodge a few more scattered thunderstorm in Minnesota this evening, but nothing as widespread or severe as Wednesday. The strongest storms favor southwest and central Minnesota this evening. NOAA’s HRRR model picks up on Friday evening rainfall trends and Saturday’s clearing high pressure.
Temperature feel more like August this weekend. Most of next week looks cooler and very pleasant with highs in the upper 70s.
Monday still looks fairly cloudy across much of Minnesota. The closest totality sweet spot for Monday’s total solar eclipse may be Nebraska.
— MPR Weather (@MPRweather) August 18, 2017
State Fair: Fair skies for opening day?
If current model trends hold, the weather could be nearly ideal for opening days of the 2017 Minnesota State Fair. For now high pressure looks likely with a mix of sun and clouds and highs in the upper 70s and dew points in the comfy 50s.
I hope you’ll join us on opening day next Thursday for a live State Fair edition of Climate Cast at 3:20 pm during All Things Considered with Tom Crann.