© 2019 Terry Swails

FAR FROM BORING....

March 27, 2018

Last Friday the Climate Prediction Center showed this for snow cover around the Midwest. Not much south of a line from Minneapolis to Green Bay.

Sunday morning snow cover looked like this. The weekend storm put down a narrow but significant band of snow along a northwest to southeast axis.

Here's a close-up view of what fell over my local area. The far south escaped but not the central and north where 5-15" was reported.

The cut-off between heavy snow and none was extremely sharp. Look at Humbolt County, Iowa. In less than 20 miles amounts ranged from a trace to 14.6". No way you can forecast that type of gradient!

This areal image shows the same thing in a very visual way. How cool is this shot. Snow on one side of the street and none on the other!

This visual satellite also shows the cut.

The snow cover is highly reflective and cold, that makes a big difference in temperatures over a short distance. In Dubuque where the ground is bare (you missed the snow by around 15 miles) the high reached 44 degrees. 85 miles west in Waterloo with a heavy snow pack the high stayed at 35.

 

One other aspect of the storm I found fascinating was the thundersnow. At 10:00pm Friday night at KGAN (NE Cedar Rapids) the temperature was 43. By 11:00pm there was sharp thunder and lightning and the temperature had dropped to 34 with moderate snow. The wind was gusting to 40 mph. That's a perfect example of evaporative cooling and powerful spring dynamics. By the way, we had 4 consecutive hours with thundersnow. It was awesome!!!

 

Monday scattered showers and a few thunderstorms returned with temperatures just warm enough for rain instead of snow. The remnants of that disturbance will bring clouds and morning fog to the central Midwest Tuesday.

 

By Wednesday sunshine should return to the central Midwest. That along with southwest winds will take care of much of the remaining snow cover and bring warmer temperatures. The EURO shows this for highs Wednesday afternoon.

Unfortunately it does not appear the warmth will be around long. Cooler weather returns Thursday and lasts right on into the weekend. Easter appears quite chilly with the EURO keeping highs in the 30s over much of my area. Those egg hunts are looking mighty fresh. There is some chance of rain or even a rain snow mix at some time but there is very little consistency between models. It may take a day or two to straighten this part of the forecast out.

Meantime we keep looking for spring. That's all I have for now. Hope you're living the dream! Roll weather...TS

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