Pleasant autumnal weather continues to be on track for Minnesota until at least well into the weekend.
A tight pressure gradient will bring us strong warm advection for Friday. That means strong southerly winds will push our temperatures to warmer-than-normal levels. High temperatures should be in the 50s in the far north, 60s for most of us and even a few readings touching 70 in southern Minnesota. The Twin Cities should have a high near 66 on a day when the average high is 57.
Wind-whipped Friday afternoon
Then there will be that wind that is the cause of the warm advection. Winds are likely to gust in excess of 30 mph across the southern half of Minnesota including the Twin Cities area Friday afternoon. The strongest winds with gusts in excess of 40 mph will be found in open areas of southern Minnesota.
The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory for much of southern Minnesota including Mankato, Rochester and Albert Lea from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Friday. Southerly winds gusting as high as 50 mph could be hazardous for high profile vehicles especially on east-west highways such as Interstate 90.
A cold front will cross the state with a few scattered light showers Friday night.
Then look for clearing skies, mild temperatures and light winds on Saturday. The southern half of Minnesota should be a tad cooler behind the cold front on Saturday than on Friday, but still warmer than normal.
Sunday mostly pleasant, then rain from the west
Sunday will bring increasing clouds as a low pressure system intensifies to our west.
The current outlook is that most of Minnesota should have a dry Sunday. Rain will probably spread into western Minnesota Sunday afternoon or evening.
All of Minnesota should get wet at times Sunday night and on Monday. Areas of central and northern Minnesota could soak up around an inch of rain from this slow-moving storm.
Much cooler next week
Blustery northwest winds from the Dakotas on the backside of this storm will drive our temperatures down on Monday. In fact, all of next week will have you reaching for your favorite fall jacket. The Twin Cities could have a chilly high temperature in the upper 40s by Thursday.
Tropical storm for the Southeast
Potential tropical cyclone 16 has formed in the Gulf of Mexico. It should become Tropical Storm Nestor on Friday as it deepens and races northeast toward the Gulf Coast of Florida with heavy rain. A storm surge to as much as 5 feet above ground level is possible in affected coastal areas of Florida.
Winter snowfall outlook
The Climate Prediction Center posted a new winter precipitation outlook for the meteorological winter months of December, January and February on Thursday, Oct. 17.
As you can see, the outlook is for a significant likelihood of above normal precipitation for that three-month period from Montana to the Mid-Atlantic states with Minnesota in the bull’s-eye of maximum probability for greater-than-normal snowfall.