A taste of spring

Get ready Minnesota. The mildest air mass in three weeks is on the way.

Temperatures push the 40 degree mark Wednesday in the Twin Cities and southern Minnesota. A temperature speed bump arrives Friday, then temperatures rise back into the 30s this weekend.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecast temperatures for the Twin Cities, via Weather Bell

Edge of spring

It’s amazing how big the temperature contrast across the Midwest can be this time of year. Wednesday features highs in the 60s as close as Kansas City, Mo.

NOAA

Winter gives ground

It’s still February. But this week’s warming trend likely symbolizes the beginning of the end for this winter. Yes, it will snow more, and we often dip below zero once more into the first week of March.

But the upper-air pattern favors more frequent milder Pacific air intrusions into the Upper Midwest as we head for February’s exit.

NOAA

Peak winter

We’re nearing peak ice on the Great Lakes. Ice cover on Lake Superior is now at 77 percent with the peak ahead in early March. The Upper Midwest view from space is breathtaking.

Trump budget cuts National Weather Service staff

The return on investment on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration spending is probably the best for any budget item. National Weather Service forecasts for last year’s hurricane season were outstanding.

Let’s see what happens in the budget process. Capital Weather Gang’s Jason Samenow elaborates on the proposed budget cuts.

Snowpack running low out west

It may evolve into another challenging year for western snowpack.