Weekend forecast: More seasonal temps return as arctic chill retreats

List of the coldest Thursday morning wind chills

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The coldest wind chill recorded Thursday morning at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport was 34 degrees below zero.

Waskish, in north-central Minnesota, reported a wind chill of 48 below zero at 5 a.m. Thursday morning. Benson, in western Minnesota, tallied a wind chill of minus 47.

The National Weather Service posted a list of the coldest wind chills from Thursday morning across central and southern Minnesota. Here are some of those wind chill reports:

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Thursday morning wind chills
National Weather Service

Winds and wind chills had eased off by midday, but temperatures remained very cold. Much of Minnesota will stay below zero Thursday afternoon, while a few spots see highs in the single digits above zero.

Low temperatures late Thursday night into early Friday morning will be in the teens below zero, and a few spots may see 20s below zero:

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Forecast Friday lows
National Weather Service

Wind chill temps at 7 a.m. Friday are expected to range from the 30s below zero northwest to the teens below zero southeast:

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Forecast Friday 7 a.m. wind chills
National Weather Service

Friday high temps will be in the teens in most areas, with 20s in west-central and southwestern Minnesota:

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Friday forecast highs
National Weather Service

The weekend

Northern and central Minnesota could see periods of light snow showers late Friday night and on Saturday. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s North American Mesoscale forecast model shows the potential snow pattern from Friday evening through Saturday afternoon:

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Simulated radar Friday evening through Saturday afternoon
NOAA, via Tropicaltidbits.com

There might also be patchy freezing drizzle in a some areas.

Weekend temps and chills

Saturday will be the mildest day of the weekend, with highs in the 20s in the northern half of Minnesota and 30s in southern Minnesota and western Wisconsin::

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Saturday forecast highs
National Weather Service

Saturday afternoon wind chills will be in the 20s south, with teens to the north:

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Saturday 1 p.m. forecast wind chills
National Weather Service

On Sunday, high temperatures range from single digits in the far north to upper 20s in the southeast:

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Sunday forecast highs
National Weather Service

Sunday afternoon wind chills will dip below zero in parts of the north, with teens in the far south:

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Sunday 1 p.m. forecast wind chills
National Weather Service

Bottom line: Saturday will be the mildest day of the weekend for your outdoor activities.

Snow depths

Cross-country skiers, sledders, snowboarders and snowmobilers will be happy to know that there’s plenty of snow on the ground across much of Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Here’s Thursday’s snow depth analysis from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration:

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Thursday morning snow depth
NOAA/NWS

The official Twin Cities snow depth was 9 inches Thursday morning. Many spots in northern Minnesota and northern Wisconsin have more than 20 inches of snow on the ground, and parts of northeastern Minnesota show more than 40 inches.

I’m sure that many people in southern Minnesota will take advantage of the snow that was deposited by the winter storm last Saturday night and Sunday morning.