Passing showers, smoky skies, and cool fronts. Incredible Iowa tornado video

I call it “Wurzer Weather.”

That’s how I honor MPR’s Morning Edition Host on hot, steamy summer air masses in Minnesota.

You know, those days when your AC unit buzzes, local beaches are packed, and long lines form at your local Dairy Queen. Cathy likes it hot out there. Who can blame her in a climate that seems frigid more often than not?

Cathy Wurzer and Paul Huttner prepping for MPR event. MPR News

I was sorry to tell Cathy this morning that right now I don’t see any Wurzer warm fronts on the horizon. In fact, the next two weeks look seasonably cool across the Upper Midwest. Which for late July means pretty darn nice.

Smoky skies

You may have noticed the whitish tint to the Land of Sky Blue Waters lately. That’s smoke from Canadian wildfires east of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

In fact, large parts of North America are living under smoky skies from numerous wildfires from the western U.S. and Canada.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Air quality readings in Minnesota have been hovering in the moderate (yellow) range the past few days.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

We may see smoke plumes drifting over Minnesota again in the coming weeks.

Spotty showers

A weak cool front nudges east across Minnesota today. Spotty, non-severe showers will pop up this afternoon. Any showers should be relatively brief as they pass by.

Here’s the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration High Resolution Rapid Refresh model.

NOAA, via tropical tidbits

Cool fronts ahead

A reinforcing cold front brings scattered thunderstorms Wednesday. Behind the front, Thursday feels more September than July. No big hot fronts in sight for the next 10 days.

NOAA, via Weather Bell

Iowa Tornadoes

The Des Moines, Iowa, NWS is still counting up tornadoes from last Thursday. So far, it looks like a dozen tornadoes tore across Iowa last week.

The video coming in is still breathtaking.

Tornado tracks

One way Ted Fujita learned about tornadoes was to study the footprints they leave in cornfields. Check out this “tornado track” in Iowa.