Warmest weekend temps on Saturday; update on rain chances

Flood warnings in parts of northeastern Minnesota

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Mississippi River as viewed from St. Paul May 13, 2022
Ron Trenda/MPR News

I’ve noticed a lot of leaves emerging on our trees during the past few days. Our spring green-up was delayed a bit, so I think it’s appreciated a bit more than normal.

The fishing opener is today in Minnesota. It’ll be breezy today, creating a bit of chop on the bigger lakes, which is good for fishing.

Rain chances

There have been some scattered showers in the northern half of Minnesota Saturday morning.

Forecast models show that the northern third of Minnesota has the best chance of occasional showers Saturday afternoon and evening, and there could also be a few embedded t-storms at times. Far southeastern Minnesota and parts of western Wisconsin could see a few scattered showers and an isolated t-storm late Saturday afternoon and Saturday evening.

Scattered Sunday morning showers are possible in far southern Minnesota. A few pop-up showers and an isolated t-storm are possible Sunday afternoon/early Sunday evening anywhere in Minnesota and western Wisconsin.

You can hear updated weather information for Minnesota and western Wisconsin on the Minnesota Public Radio News network, and you can see updated weather info on the MPR News live weather blog.

Temperature trends

Saturday temps will be a bit above normal in much of Minnesota, with a lot of 70s. Far northwestern Minnesota will have Saturday highs in the 60s, and far southeastern Minnesota and portions of western Wisconsin will reach the lower 80s. Some spots in the Twin Cities metro area could touch 80. Our average Twin Cities high is 69 degrees this time of year. It’ll be a bit breezy Saturday afternoon.

Sunday highs will be in the 60s in northern Minnesota, with some lower 70s in the south:

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Sunday forecast highs
National Weather Service

Sunday afternoon wind gusts are expected to be in the 20 to 25 mph range in many areas:

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

Back to temperatures, Twin Cities metro area highs are projected to reach the upper 60s Monday and Tuesday, then around 70 Wednesday, followed by upper 70s Thursday and lower 70s on Friday.

Flood warning update

Flood warnings continue in portions of northeastern and a small part of north-central Minnesota this weekend:

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Flood warning (green)
National Weather Service

Snowmelt plus generous rains the past couple of weeks are causing very high river and stream levels in some areas and lake levels are also high in many locations.  According to the NWS, the Pigeon River near Grand Portage has exceeded its record water level:

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North Shore flooding update
National Weather Service

Here are details of the flood warning:

Flood Warning National Weather Service Duluth MN 847 AM CDT Fri May 13 2022 MNC031-075-171800- /O.NEW.KDLH.FA.W.0008.220513T1347Z-220517T1800Z/ /00000.0.RS.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.OO/ Cook MN-Lake MN- 847 AM CDT Fri May 13 2022 ...FLOOD WARNING IN EFFECT UNTIL 1 PM CDT TUESDAY... * WHAT...Flooding caused by rain and snowmelt is expected. * WHERE...A portion of northeast Minnesota, including the following counties, Cook and Lake. * WHEN...Until 100 PM CDT Tuesday. * IMPACTS...Flooding of rivers, creeks, streams, and other low-lying and flood-prone locations is imminent or occurring. Rivers and streams continue to rise due to excess runoff from earlier rainfall. * ADDITIONAL DETAILS... - At 836 AM CDT, Heavy rain and snowmelt are causing strong river rises due to excessive runoff. Flooding is already occurring in the warned area. - Rivers and streams draining from the high elevations of the North Shore of Lake Superior from Castle Danger to Grand Portage are running extremely high. Upland areas in Cook and Lake county are experiencing road washouts and closures. - http://www.weather.gov/safety/flood PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS... Turn around, don`t drown when encountering flooded roads. Most flood deaths occur in vehicles. Stay away or be swept away. River banks and culverts can become unstable and unsafe. Visitors to the North Shore need to respect the dangers of very high fast moving water. Please report observed flooding to local emergency services or law enforcement and request they pass this information to the National Weather Service when you can do so safely.

The Rainy River Basin is seeing very high water levels:

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Updated flooding info for portions of northern Minnesota
National Weather Service

Here are details of the flood warning for those areas:

Flood Statement National Weather Service Duluth MN 1030 AM CDT Sat May 14 2022 MNC071-075-137-181900- /O.CON.KDLH.FA.W.0007.000000T0000Z-220518T1900Z/ /00000.0.RS.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.OO/ Koochiching MN-Lake MN-St. Louis MN- 1030 AM CDT Sat May 14 2022 ...FLOOD WARNING CONTINUES FOR PROLONGED PERIOD OF FLOODING IN THE RAINY RIVER BASIN... * WHAT...Flooding caused by rain and snowmelt is occurring. Lakes and rivers will continue to rise in the coming days and weeks. * WHERE...Rivers and lakes within the Rainy River Basin including Lake Vermilion, Crane Lake, Namakan Lake, Kabetogama Lake, Rainy Lake, and the Rainy River. * WHEN...Flooding is occurring and is expected to continue for the next several weeks. Additional water level rises are expected. * IMPACTS...Strong lake level rises are ongoing. Flooding continues on area lakes, rivers, creeks and other low-lying and flood-prone locations. * ADDITIONAL DETAILS... - At 1013 AM CDT, emergency management reported ongoing flooding across the warned area. Heavy rain over much of the Rainy Lake Basin on May 12th and 13th have resulted in additional strong rises on area water bodies. - Levels on Namakan Lake are expected to rise 7 to 9 inches. Rainy Lake is expected to rise 11 to 13 inches between May 13th and May 20th. - Areas affected include Rainer, Island View, Voyageurs National Park, Crane Lake, and Lake Vermilion. - http://www.weather.gov/dlh/RainyRiverBasin PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS... Turn around, don`t drown when encountering flooded roads. Most flood deaths occur in vehicles. Please report observed flooding to local emergency services or law enforcement and request they pass this information to the National Weather Service when you can do so safely.

Updates on the flooding in portions of northeastern and north-central Minnesota can be found at the NWS Duluth site.

North Shore video

It’s good to see that the Cascade River (about midway between Lutsen and Grand Marais, Minn.) isn’t quite as high today:

Here’s how high it was on Friday:

I’ve walked under that bridge in the past, so today’s level is still very high.

MPR’s Andrew Krueger posted this video today of Gooseberry Falls (which is roughly midway between Two Harbors and Silver Bay):

Ice out dates

According to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, ice out on Leech Lake was on May 9 this year. The average ice out date for Leech Lake is April 28. Ice out on Mille Lacs was May 2; that’s about a week later than their average ice out date of April 25. Upper Red Lake and Lower Red Lake saw their ice go out just 4 days ago, according to the DNR. The 2022 and historic ice out dates for many Minnesota lakes can be found here. The map at that DNR site looks like this:

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2022 lake ice out dates
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

You can zoom in on the map at the DNR site and hover over or click on the icon to get ice out information.

Programming note

You can hear my live weather updates on MPR News at 7:35 a.m., 9:35 a.m. and 4:39 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday.

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