Weather Blog

A Recap of Tuesday’s Winter Weather

We have had a little bit of everything across the area today. Many of us woke up to freezing rain, sleet, snow or even just regular rain showers. The biggest impacts were to the north where we saw over a tenth of an inch of ice. By the afternoon Mother Nature turned her box fans on and turned them to high. Winds gusts have topped 40 mph in many places this evening. Below are lists of the ice accumulation from this morning as well as this evenings highest wind gusts.

Pineapple Express Brings MoistureTo West Coast

Much Needed Rain Seen In California, Impacts Plains Too

It’s been in the news lately for bringing much needed rain to the west, especially to parts of California where most of the state is suffering some form of a drought. It’s called the Pineapple Express but you won’t see Seth Rogen or James Franco in it. So what is the Pineapple Express and how does it affect us in the Northern Plains?The Pineapple Express is actually part of the polar jet, it’s a southern branch of it. A high pressure system that is located in the Gulf of Alaska blocks the polar jet but during the winter it weakens. As a result, the polar jet sometimes forms a southerly branch, which is better known as the Pineapple Express. This southerly branch typically is located just north of the Hawaiian Islands and brings moisture westward from as far as Asia. Much like how low pressure systems move across land, low pressure systems ride along the jet and bring heavy rain to the west coast. These heavy rains occur, typically, over the course of days but, sometimes, it can last for longer than a week.

Spring Fever: Unseasonable Warmth Spring Like, Not January

Recent warm temperatures are atypical for mid January, so why are they here?

It’s hard to believe that it’s already 2015, let alone the middle of January. While we saw snow and cooler temperatures earlier in the month, we’ve recently been under a warmer air mass boasting temperatures typically seen in the spring. Why are we seeing these temperatures if it’s mid January?

Sioux Falls Ranked 4th Most Unpredictable Weather in U.S.

A national study done by FiveThirtyEight.com has concluded that 3 of the top 8 cities in the United States with the most Unpredictable weather are located in South Dakota, with Sioux Falls coming in at No. 4.The study surveyed data from each of the 120 National Weather Service locations across the 50 states and compiled a database comparing 10 weather statistics and how unpredictable they are in each city. This study was on how unpredictable the weather is and NOT if the weather is good or bad (i.e. “In San Diego, to a first approximation, it’s always 72 degrees and sunny. In Seattle, to a first approximation, it’s always 59 degrees and drizzly. Most people like San Diego’s weather better, but both cities have fairly predictable weather patterns. “).