January thaw continues; Mix of rain and snow Sunday night

Fans of mild January temps will be smiling Saturday afternoon.

If you like cooler temps, hang in there, temps will be much closer to normal in a few days.

Temperature trends

Our average Twin Cities metro area high is 24 degrees this time of year.

Saturday afternoon highs should reach the 40s in the Twin Cities metro area, plus south-central and southeastern Minnesota. We’ll see mostly 30s elsewhere.

Sunday will feature highs in the 20s north, with 30s south:

Twin Cities metro area highs are expected to reach around 40 degrees on Monday. We could be in the lower 30s early Tuesday, with temps falling through the 20s in the afternoon. Highs in the lower 20s are expected on Wednesday, then up near 30 on Thursday.

Snow chances

Snow is expected to spread across northern and central Minnesota Sunday evening and continue overnight Sunday night into Monday morning. The Twin Cities metro area and southern Minnesota will probably see a rain/snow mix Sunday evening and overnight Sunday night into early Monday. Parts of southeastern Minnesota could have mostly rain. Some pockets of light freezing rain are possible Sunday evening and Sunday night in the Twin Cities metro area and southern Minnesota.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s North American Mesoscale forecast model shows the potential precipitation pattern from Sunday evening through Monday morning:

NOAA NAM simulated radar from Sunday evening through Monday morning, 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 snow or rain.

The heaviest snow amounts Sunday night into Monday morning are expected to be over northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin. A winter storm watch begins Sunday evening and runs into Monday morning for those areas:

NWS Duluth

As always, updated weather information can be heard on the Minnesota Public Radio Network, and you will also see updated weather info on the MPR News live weather blog.

At this point, it looks like the Twin Cities metro area will be near the dividing line between the mix of rain and snow and the area of mostly snow overnight Sunday night. The northern portion of the metro could see 1-3 inches of snow Sunday night into early Monday, with less than one inch in the south metro.

You can check the latest forecasts from the NWS offices in the Twin CitiesDuluth and Grand Forks, N.D.

Snow season

Take heart snow lovers.

We’re less than halfway through our snow season in Minnesota.

In the Twin Cities metro area, we average 54 inches of snow in our snow season:

Minnesota State Climatology Office

Of that 54 inches, we average 32.6 inches from January through April.

Programming note

You can hear my live weather updates on Minnesota Public Radio at 7:49 a.m. Thursdays and Fridays, and at 7:35 a.m., 9:35 a.m. and 4:35 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday.