Friday, April 19, 2013

Spring Snow

It may be spring in Minnesota according to the calendar but, weather-wise, conditions remain decidedly wintry! So much so that my friend Daniel posted the following yesterday on Facebook:

How do you spell "spring" in Minnesota? "B-L-I-Z-Z-A-R-D."

I guess it's all to make up for last year when we experienced a very early spring.

Here's how the Minneapolis Star Tribune is reporting yesterday's spring snowfall:

Minnesota’s relentless winter is poised to reassert itself Thursday afternoon into Friday, bringing about 6 inches of snow to the Twin Cities metro area and as much as a foot to Duluth.

. . . Rain on Thursday is expected to turn to all snow by the afternoon, then come down at the rate of 1 to 2 inches per hour Thursday night — hard enough to accumulate even on warm roads, National Weather Service meteorologist Bill Berghoff said.

Friday traffic, however, is usually lighter than that on other days of the workweek, and the snow should not hang around long with highs in the mid-30s, said T.K. Kramascz, spokesman for the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s metro district.

The amount forecast for the Twin Cities would push this April into the five snowiest. Duluth, meanwhile, is enduring its snowiest February-through-April on record and had 17 inches of snow on the ground through Tuesday.

International Falls residents are trudging through 21 inches, the most at this late date, assistant state climatologist Pete Boulay said.

While April snows, even deep ones, are not extraordinary across Minnesota, nature watchers say the combination of snow and cold appears to have set back some bird ­arrivals by about two weeks. . . . Pete Harris, naturalist at Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center near Isabella, said the first day when the temperature remains above freezing is usually March 18, but it hasn’t happened yet this year. Likewise, April 13 usually brings the first mosquito sighting; this year, none yet.

National Weather Service hydrologist Greg Gust said the continuing cold has cast the agency’s flood-predicting models into “uncharted territory,” with wintry conditions unprecedented for this late.

While rivers have usually flooded by now, they remain frozen across the Red River Valley, and the late date has increased the risk of a sudden warm-up and thaw across the region, Gust said. The Red could crest at Fargo-Moorhead the week after next, one of its latest spring melt floods ever.

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
Shadows and Light
A Winter Walk Along Minnehaha Creek (March 2013)
A Springtime Walk Along Minnehaha Creek (March 2012)
Winter Storm (December 2012)
Waiting in Repose for Spring's Awakening Kiss
A Springtime Prayer

Images: Michael J. Bayly.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great pictures. Try to stay warm there. What a difference from last year. It is chilly here but had some warm days last week.