Classic December: Thursday sun, Friday Clipper

Minnesota’s weather is now locked into a fairly classic December pattern. The IR satellite loop for Canada shows the swirling low pressure zone near Hudson Bay. Minnesota rides the cold and occasionally snowy exhaust zone on the backside of that large-scale feature.

NOAA IR satellite loop via College of Dupage.

Friday Clipper

A series of minor Clippers are embedded in our persistent northwest flow pattern. Today’s snow globe sky gives way to more sunshine Thursday. The next Clipper sails south Friday. Northeast Minnesota and northern Wisconsin pick up a couple inches of fresh Arctic fluff with Friday’s system.

Here’s NOAA’s GFS model.

NOAA via tropical tidbits.

Temperatures moderate slightly

I still don’t see any big changes in our overall weather pattern for the next 1-2 weeks. Temperatures moderate slightly the next few days. Thermometers may crack the thawing point briefly in the Twin Cities and southern Minnesota Sunday afternoon.

NOAA via Weather Bell


The stable northern hemispheric upper wave pattern appears determined to hang on as we approach the week before Christmas. That should continue to deliver mostly cold northwest flow into the Upper Midwest.


This type of flow pattern favors the cold east, warm west temperature scenario across the U.S. for the next two weeks. Winter is here until further notice.


Santa Ana winds returning

The biggest extreme weather story in the U.S. remains the fire-breathing Santa Ana winds in southern California.

Winds took a break Wednesday in southern California. But the next surge in cold air in the Great Basin drives a new round of Santa Ana wind gusts Thursday and Friday.

Expect another surge of “extreme fire behavior” in the next 48 hours.