Rain today in Minneapolis, heavy snow tomorrow
It’s rainy out there today in the Twin Cities, and there are some big questions surrounding snow forecast totals around Hennepin County and the metro area. We’ll talk about it all in a moment.
Here’s the radar view as of 8:35 a.m.:
It’s definitely been a while since I’ve seen rain on the radar over Minnesota, but there it is. It’s moving northeast, for now, although we might see new showers develop by later today. There’s a chance we’ll see a break in the precipitation after this passes, and that break will last until our next round of rain arrives this evening.
Here’s a look at your Minneapolis 7 day forecast (and St. Paul 7 day forecast):
So what’s the timing? Let’s break it all down. First, the rain. By dinnertime we’ll likely see some rain moving back in, with another round of heavier rain trying to move in at some point this evening as well:
The biggest question is when rain turns to snow. One major model shows snow occurring earlier in the morning (around 7 a.m. or so) and another shows snow starting around 10-11 a.m. In reality, it’ll likely be a blend between those two.
The time things change is very important to snowfall totals, because we’ll likely pick up 0.25″ of liquid precipitation during that question mark time between 7 a.m. and about 10 a.m. – which would be 2.5″ of snow (or more).
Here’s the future radar for around 7 a.m., and for simplicity I’ve converted the color scheme to show all snow at that point:
Keep in mind that some of that heavier (purple/orangish) precipitation above might come as snow and some as rain at that point. If we fast-forward a little later you’re looking at all snow, regardless:
That would be extremely heavy, wet, snow at that point above. What I’m leaning toward saying is that if you’re able to work from home on Monday, it would be a great day to do that. Unless you enjoy commutes that are triple or quadruple the length of time your commute normally is.
If we go a little later in the day, and zoom out a bit, you start to get a sense of the scope of this storm:
Note, also, the timing. It looks like we’ll get heavy snow Monday morning to midday – but also a band of moderate to heavy snow right around evening commute time, reinforcing my suggestion to avoid driving to work on Monday.
By a little later in the evening we’ll start to see drier conditions wrap into central Minnesota, but there will still be light snow on the comma head section (the western section) of this storm system:
That could add another inch or so of total snow to our mess as we head overnight and into Tuesday. Overall it looks like a complex storm system that is tough to pinpoint, but our snowfall totals will definitely depend on the time rain changes to snow.
As of now, this is what I’m expecting (above) for snowfall totals through Tuesday morning. We’ll see how it all pans out, and as I mentioned a lot will be determined by when rain changes to snow. If you wake up at 7 a.m. and we’re already seeing heavy snow you know we’ll be in the 6″+ zone.
Follow Meteorologist Aaron Shaffer on Twitter. Aaron is a meteorologist who lives in Minneapolis, is on the Midtown Greenway Coalition's board of directors, and is the digital communications and social media associate for the nonprofit Avivo in Minneapolis. Deep down he's a weather geek and has a degree in Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences from UW-Madison to prove it. He's spent time working at TV stations in Wyoming, South Dakota, and Iowa prior to arriving in Minneapolis to work for WeatherNation and now forecasting for MinnyApple. His favorite weather career moment came while storm chasing for his Iowa station (he went on 40+ storm chases during that time), when he saw a mile-wide EF-4 rated tornado.