Astronomical spring at 4:58 CDT Wednesday; milder air works in

“Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s Party!’”— Robin Williams

The sun’s rays hover directly over the equator at 4:58 p.m. CDT Wednesday afternoon. That marks the start of astronomical spring in the northern hemisphere.

NASA

At noon Wednesday, the sun will hover about 45-degrees above the horizon in the Twin Cities. The sun climbs higher in the sky each day for the next three months.

It reaches peak elevation about 68.5 degrees above the noon horizon on June 21. The higher sun angle and intensity and longer daylight drive warmer weather patterns over the next six months.

Supermoon, too

A rare supermoon on the equinox happens Wednesday night.

50s ahead

Two pulses of milder air arrive in the next week. The first pushes in late this week into the weekend. We hit a temperature speed bump early next week. Then another mild wave hits next week.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, via Weather Bell

Flood threat continues 

The flood picture this spring is like a patchwork mosaic. Each river is dealing with local snowpack conditions. The latest update emphasizes ice jams as a flooding wild card.

Red River later

Flooding generally works from south to north as spring moves in. There’s still plenty of snow on the ground in the Red River Valley. That will mean a later crest with moderate to major flooding likely in places like Fargo and Grand Forks, N.D.

Minnesota’s electricity balance changing

Here’s my Climate Cast conversation with Gregg Mast about how quickly Minnesota’s electricity production balance is greening.

Pushing the season up north

Why not?