Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Twin Cities, MN

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FXUS63 KMPX 152106

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Twin Cities/Chanhassen MN
306 PM CST Wed Feb 15 2017

.SHORT TERM...(This evening through Thursday)
Issued at 300 PM CST Wed Feb 15 2017

Quiet weather is the name of the game in the short term as upper-
level ridging begins it`s dominance on our weather through the
weekend. Temperatures didn`t quite over-achieve this afternoon as
has been the case the last few days with the strongest thermal
ridging stalling in Dakotas and the warmest 850 mb temps not quite
making it to the area. Regardless, it`s been another warm and
pleasant February day with light winds and temperatures ranging from
the upper 20s in west-central WI, to the mid-40s in far-western MN.

Winds will become southerly overnight as the ridge axis passes
overhead, opening the doors to a near-unprecedented period of warmth
for February. Lows tonight will be 10 degrees warmer than last night
in some areas and 10-20 degrees above normal for mid-February,
continued to lean towards the Euro for temperature guidance. More of
the same is expected Thursday as the overhead ridge continues to
build, with 500 mb heights reaching 3 standard deviations above
normal. Continued to push a degree or two higher than the Euro and
towards the upper bound of ensemble data, with temperatures expected
to reach the upper 30s in west-central WI and pushing mid-50s in
southwest MN.

.LONG TERM...(Thursday night through Wednesday)
Issued at 300 PM CST Wed Feb 15 2017

The long term issues remain warmth over the region through the
next 7 days at least. Next best chance for rain moves in during
the day Monday and Monday night.

Model trends continue to show very warm air lifting into the area
ahead of a pacific frontal system on Friday. The 12z ECMWF
continues to be the warmest of the deterministic models. It will
depend on how far to the north the surface warm front will move.
We did a mixdown of temperatures from 925mb and it resulted in
upper 50s into portions of central MN. Southerly flow is evident
on gridded forecast...but is rather weak. We still believe we
should manage some lower 60s to the southwest. Latest available
SREF plumes showing 95th percentile around 59F for MSP. We will
mention upper 50s for east central MN for highs on Friday. This
look to be the best chance for record temperatures over parts of
southern Minnesota as well. Snow cover is limited to parts of the
far southeast and over west central Wisconsin to north of the I94
corridor into central MN. Much of this should be melted through
the next several days.

The weak Pacific cool front will exit the region Friday night and
Saturday and should provide only minor cooling through the
remainder of the weekend. The next significant threat for rain
moves in during the day Monday and perhaps lingering into Tuesday
to the east. The deterministic models drive increasing moisture
out ahead of the next frontal system. Models diverge on how much
phasing will occur with the upper trough. But it still looks like
at least likely pops spreading from east to west during this
period. Some indication of best li`s decreasing to slightly below
zero as well. Not out of the question to seeing some isolated
thunder working into the southwest into Monday. This also has the
potential of being a warm day...with some lower 60s possible into
the southwest. We decided it keep readings tempered somewhat with
the forecast clouds and rain.

We will retain the small chance of precipitation Tuesday into
Wednesday as the GFS tries to being a weak short wave across
mainly he northern cwa during this period.


.AVIATION...(For the 18Z TAFS through 18Z Thursday afternoon)
Issued at 1159 AM CST Wed Feb 15 2017

VFR conditions this afternoon with some scattered mid-level clouds
streaming in from the north, but otherwise only high cirrus
present at area terminals. Winds will remain light and back
through the afternoon and evening, becoming southeasterly after
sunset. Light southeasterly winds will continue into Wednesday
with increasing cirrus throughout the day.

The possibility does exist for some patchy fog to develop at AXN
around sunrise Wednesday. Models may still be overdoing the snow
cover in that area and thus, the subsequent low-level moisture
available for fog development. Since it is towards the end of this
TAF period, have elected to leave out any mention of fog at this

VFR conditions throughout the period. Winds will remain light and back
throughout the afternoon, becoming westerly by mid-afternoon, and
southeasterly after sunset.

THU...VFR. Wind SE at 5 kts.
FRI...VFR. Wind S at 5 kts.




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