A tight spiral of a small storm system, more typical of May than August, has been spinning over Iowa on Monday. Areas of rain and scattered thunderstorms have been breaking out across Minnesota in response to that low pressure system as well as to the heating of the day.
Some parts of southern Minnesota have had repeated bouts of soaking rain, while most of the Twin Cities finally got at least a little rain after half a month of total dryness. My rain gauge in Minneapolis measured just a tenth of an inch of rain for the day up to 5 p.m. on Monday.
As we approach the evening, rain is falling on south central and far southeastern Minnesota. Numerous smaller storms with lightning have been developing across western Wisconsin and are tracking west and southwestward into eastern Minnesota. Some of these thunderstorms will cross the Twin Cities area well into the evening.
More Canadian smoke
Another plume of smoke from Canadian wildfires has moved into our state. An air quality alert for significant concentrations of fine particulates will remain in effect for a broad swath of Minnesota from the northeast to the southwest and south central until 9 a.m. on Tuesday.
Look for decreasing clouds and comfortable temperatures on Tuesday. Highs should be mainly from the upper 60s in the slow-to-clear southeast corner to some mid 70s. The Twin Cities should hit about 76. Dew points will be comfortable.
Wednesday and Thursday will be dry and a bit warmer.
Next chances of storms
Showers and thunderstorms are likely to pop up around the state Thursday night and on Friday.
Looking farther ahead, there is the possibility of some stronger storms later on Saturday.
Hurricane Lane update
Hurricane Lane has intensified into a powerful category 4 storm in the central Pacific. The forecast track for Lane has it turning gradually more toward the northwest over the next couple days and possibly threatening the Hawaiian Islands later this week.