Snow season nears the half-way point; quiet weekend in Minnesota, a lot of snow in southern Iowa

There’s little or no snow cover right now across much of the Twin Cities metro area and south-central into southeastern Minnesota:

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Northern Minnesota and west-central Minnesota still have plenty of snow on the ground.

Snow lovers should note that we still have more than one-half of our snow season remaining.

The 2017-2018 Twin Cities snow season started out slow too, with only 7.1 inches of snow from October through the first 10 days of January:

Minnesota State Climatology Office

We saw a couple of 2- to 3-inch snowfalls by mid-January of last year, followed by a snowstorm that dumped 12.4 inches of snow in the Twin Cities on Jan. 22, 2018.

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport tallied 20.4 inches of snow last January, and saw a total of 78.3 inches for the entire 2017-2018 snow season.  Included in that season total was a record Twin Cities April snowfall total of 26.1 inches.

It can snow a lot between now and the end of our snow season, but there aren’t any big metro area snowstorms in the forecast models over the next 10 days.

Snowstorm will pass to the south this weekend

Northeastern Minnesota will see some periods of snow Thursday night and Friday.  Here are some possible snow totals:

National Weather Service Duluth

Cook County and eastern Lake County in northeastern Minnesota will probably see enough snow to shovel.

Meanwhile, a winter storm will be brewing across Iowa and points south and east.

The winter storm is expected to dump heavy snow on Missouri, southern Iowa and much of Illinois Friday through Saturday.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s North American Mesoscale forecast model shows the potential precipitation pattern from Friday through Saturday:

NOAA NAM simulated radar from Friday morning though Saturday afternoon, via tropicaltidbits

Potential snow totals from the NAM model:

NOAA NAM snow accumulation from Friday morning though Saturday afternoon, via tropicaltidbits

Here’s the depiction of Iowa snow from the National Weather Service:

NWS Des Moines, Iowa

Check forecast updates if your Friday or weekend travel plans include those areas.

Temperature trends

The arctic chill will leave us Thursday and high temps will be near normal in many parts of Minnesota. Highs in the 20s are expected over about the southern half of Minnesota Thursday afternoon, with mostly teens to the north.

Our average high this time of year is 23 degrees in the Twin Cities metro area, and we should be warmer than average Thursday afternoon.

Friday highs should be in the 20s across the northern half of Minnesota, with 30s south:

Similar highs are on tap for Saturday:

On Sunday, look for highs in the 30s south, with 20s north:

Twin Cities metro area highs are expected to reach the mid 30s on Monday, followed by lower 30s Tuesday and upper 20s next Wednesday.

No arctic chill in that forecast!

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.