Cold week ahead but ice cover still sketchy

We’re making ice this week on Minnesota’s lakes. Our sub-freezing week peaks Thursday and Friday with low temperatures near zero across most of Minnesota Friday morning. But ice cover remains sketchy on Minnesota lakes.

Case in point? Douglas County Minnesota.

Ice thickness varies 

Big differences in ice thickness occur over short distances. Some spots may show several inches several inches of ice. Just a few feet away the ice could be newly formed and very thin. Natural springs or flowing water through channels also reduces ice thickness. Here’s the rough guide for “safe ice.”

Minnesota DNR

The best advice? Know your lake. And check ice thickness frequently. Ice thickness seems static, but it often changes through the winter season.

Arctic front arrives Wednesday night

Thursday’s inbound air mass looks respectably cold.

NOAA forecast temperatures for Minneapolis via Weather Bell.

Temperatures Friday morning bottom out a few degrees either side of the zero-mark across Minnesota. Friday will likely be the coldest morning so far this season for many locations in the Upper Midwest.

NOAA

December thaw next week?

I’m still tracking a major shift in the upper air pattern next week. If it pans out, temperatures will run well above average. We could see an extended thaw next week.

NOAA Climate Prediction Center.

Climate change: The world’s biggest opportunity? 

Many of us who see the growing set of problems from climate change also see opportunity. I’ve called the technological boom from climate solutions our next great economic moon shot. Here’s more perspective on why we should look at climate change as a hopeful opportunity.