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June the way it was meant to be

I’m tired. Drained. It was a long week: first tornado(es) of the season. Straight-line winds approaching 90 mph. near Fergus Falls, strong enough to blow semis off the interstate. So I’m going to spare you a weather sermon. The weather is nice, no make that “ideal”. Today will restore your faith in a Minnesota June with brilliant sunshine worthy of #50 sunscreen, light winds, and temperatures that will make you want to go jump in a lake.

Yesterday’s instability showers are gone. St. Cloud reported .11″ of rain from the showers, a few heavy downpours (temporarily) soaked the Twin Cities, but amounts were spotty and generally light, under .10″. No rain is expected until Sunday afternoon, based on the latest guidance.

Sunday will start out sunny and promising, an area of disturbed, thundery weather passing off to our south. An afternoon or evening T-storm may sprout, but the vast majority of the day should be dry and just warm (and sticky) enough to illicit a few gripes about the muggy, dog days of June.

9 days ago we were breathlessly reporting on frost over far northern Minnesota, the state buzzing about a coating of snow on the BWCA a few days earlier. Now we’re faced with a real hot front: temperatures should top 90 Monday and Tuesday. Factor in a dew point near 70 and it may FEEL like upper 90s early next week. Instant summer. Just add water (or humidity) and stir. The atmosphere has shifted gears, the jet stream steering winds have (finally!) shifted north, allowing hot, humidified air to stream north. The result may be a few thunderstorms Monday and Tuesday, a few may turn severe, especially over far northern Minnesota.

Summer arrives (officially) Sunday morning at 12:45 am. The Summer Solstice – a glimmer of twilight on the northwestern horizon at 11:30 pm! Sunday is also Father’s Day, so give dad a break. Suspend the honey-do list for one day. Lawn-mowing should be optional. Let him crash on the hammock or maybe his favorite recliner and watch Speed Channel as long as he wants. Enjoy the weekend – we’ve been waiting a long time for a spell of weather this good.

Rainfall estimates (based on Doppler) for last week. I know, it’s a little hard seeing state and county borders, but you can make out bands of 2-4″ rains over much of central and parts of central MN, from Alexandria and St. Cloud into parts of the Twin Cities. Many counties across central MN need another 2-4″ to pull out of our current dry spell, but as I said on KTCA’s “Almanac” program Friday evening I think we’ve turned a big corner, we are definitely in a wetter, warmer weather period – and farmers should be cautiously optimistic that conditions will improve.

NAM/WRF computer prediction for 7 pm this evening, showing a weak ridge of high pressure over Minnesota, implying fair skies, light winds and temperatures a few degrees above average. Today should be the nicer day of the weekend statewide.

The same computer model for 7 pm Sunday. Although the brunt of the moisture passes just south of Minnesota you can see evidence of a possible shower/T-storm band entering central Minnesota by late afternoon or evening, the best chance of a shower after 3 or 4 pm. Up north the lakes region should stay dry much of the day, but more clouds may keep temperatures a couple degrees cooler than today.

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