Cooler, with a rain chance; how dry are we?

It was a bit steamy across Minnesota Monday afternoon.

The official high at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport was 92 degrees, a full 11 degrees above our average high of 81.

Some people like warm and steamy August afternoons, while others yearn for cooler and drier air.

The Twin Cities office of the NWS had this take on the matter:

Our Monday afternoon high in the metro area was a full 65 degrees warmer than our average high temp just four months from now.

Short term, there’ll be no need for mittens.

Temperature trends

Highs will be in the 70s across much of Minnesota on Tuesday, with some 80s in the Twin Cities metro area and points to the south and southeast:

Parts of far northern Minnesota could top out in the 60s.

Twin Cities metro area highs are expected to reach around 84 on Tuesday, followed by around 80 on Wednesday and lower 80s on Thursday. Highs in the middle 80s are on tap for Friday and this coming weekend.

We need some rain

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s map of seven-day rainfall totals shows less than one-tenth of an inch in much of the Twin Cities metro area and across most of the northern half of Minnesota:

NOAA/NWS Seven day rainfall totals ending at 7 a.m. August 13

It didn’t rain on Monday in the Twin Cities, and we haven’t seen measurable rain at MSP airport since August 4th:

NWS Data for Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport

We have a chance of rain in the forecast.

Scattered showers and an isolated thunderstorm could spread across parts of northern Minnesota overnight this Monday night, then into central and southern Minnesota on Tuesday.  Lingering scattered showers/isolated thunderstorms are possible in southeastern Minnesota Tuesday night and Wednesday.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s North American Mesoscale forecast model shows the potential rain pattern for Tuesday through Wednesday:

NOAA NAM simulated radar Tuesday through Wednesday, via tropicaltidbits

The color chart to the right of the loop refers to the strength of the signal that returns to the radar, not to the amount of rain.

I’m hoping that the NAM model is underestimating the rain coverage, and that more areas see some rain!

90 degree days

Monday was our seventeenth day of 2018 with an official high temp of 90 degrees or warmer in the Twin Cities.

According to the Minnesota State Climatology Office, we have a long-term average of about 13 days per year with a high of 90 degrees or warmer in the Twin Cities.

We could still add to our 2018 tally of 90 degree days.

We sometimes see a steamy day or two during the Minnesota State Fair, which starts one week from Thursday.