Windy, cool and wet on Monday; rivers are rising

The temperature reached 77 degrees Sunday afternoon at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. That’s pretty warm, a full 16 degrees warmer than our average April 21 high temp. Many spots in south-central and southeastern Minnesota saw highs in the lower 80s.

A stationary front separated the warmth in southern Minnesota from chillier air to the north. St. Cloud topped out at 66 degrees Sunday afternoon, and Duluth had 40s throughout most of Sunday after a mid-morning high of 50 degrees.

We’ll see chilly temps in the Twin Cities metro area on Monday.

Temperature trends

Highs across much of Minnesota will be in the lower 50s on Monday, with some 60s in far northwestern Minnesota and parts of the far southeast. Areas near Lake Superior will top out in the 40s.  The Twin Cities metro area will probably reach the lower 50s.

Many locations will see highs in the lower 60s on Tuesday:

Wednesday will be the mildest day of the week, with many upper 60s and probably some lower 70s in the far south:

Some spots in the metro area could touch 70 degrees Wednesday afternoon.

Twin Cities metro area highs are projected to reach the upper 60s Thursday and Friday.

Soggy Monday 

Areas of showers and thunderstorms will move over much of central and southern Minnesota, plus parts of northeastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin during the overnight hours of Sunday night.

Periods of rain will move over those same areas on Monday, with a few embedded thunderstorms.

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

NOAA NAM simulated radar from Sunday evening through Monday evening, 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 rain.  The loop illustrates the general rain pattern generated by the NAM model, but it won’t show every single spot that will see some rain.

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

Rainfall amounts of one to two inches are possible in some areas from Sunday night through Monday evening. Here’s a summary from the Twin Cities office of the National Weather Service, with “tonight” referring to Sunday night:


NWS Twin Cities

Here are details about the heavy rain potential in northwestern Wisconsin:

NWS Duluth

Check forecast updates for possible shifts in the heavy rain areas.

River levels 

The heavy rains from last Wednesday have caused many river levels to rise, and additional rains Sunday night and Monday will add to the river flows. There are numerous flood warnings in effect in Minnesota. You can get flood warning updates by clicking on any location on the National Weather Service Twin Cities website.  Areas with flood warnings are shaded light green on the NWS main page; here’s how the map looked Sunday evening:

NWS Twin Cities

The latest flood warnings for northwestern Minnesota can be found on the NWS Grand Forks, N.D. site. Here’s how their map looked Sunday evening:

NWS Grand Forks

You can click on any location on the NWS Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service  (AHPS) site to get hydrographs of recent and forecast river levels. Some locations list levels in feet above sea level, others list levels in feet above a local reference point.

Here’s the Sunday evening hydrograph for the Mississippi River at St. Paul:

NOAA/NWS/U.S. Geological Survey

You can see that the Mississippi River at St. Paul is expected to reach it’s new crest Wednesday evening. It’ll be well short of the crest that was reached on March 31, 2019, which was the seventh-highest on record:

NOAA/NWS/USGS data for the Mississippi River at St. Paul

Here’s the Sunday evening hydrograph for the St. Croix River at Stillwater:


Projected river levels are updated on a regular basis, so check back to the AHPS site and the NWS point forecasts for the latest info on the rivers near you. The NWS also posts some flooding details here.

If you’d like to scroll through hydrographs along a certain river, check here.

Hydrographs for the Red River can be found here. The Sunday evening hydrograph for the Red River at Fargo, North Dakota looked like this:


Here’s the Sunday evening hydrograph for the Red River at East Grand Forks, Minnesota:


It’s nice to see the downward trend in the river level at East Grand Forks!