It's a rather benign weekend ahead. We'll battle a few clouds from time to time but nothing is expected to fall from them just yet. Next week turns things around and is more active. Here's what we have.
Right now, the jet stream is in a zonal flow, which means wind is basically blowing west to east across the continental United States. It will remain in place from now through Monday. These type of setup is usually void of any major storms, but sometime holds minor disturbances that will quickly traverse the area, such is our case.
These minor disturbances only bring minor precipitation as evident by the Quantity of Precipitation Forecast by the Weather Prediction Center through Monday night.
Details are starting to merge about the happenings of next week. We'll have a couple of those minor disturbances move through Monday and again Tuesday morning which will likely produce some light snow. (Too early to discuss amounts though) By Wednesday the bigger storm takes aim. But as shown below there is still plenty of placement issues which will greatly dictate what happens locally.
The GFS shown Wednesday - Noon. It shows a strong, developed surface low to our north, centered in northern Minnesota. This scenario would draw in some warmer air with likely some sort of rain component. Eventually by Wednesday night strong cold front moves through and would likely change things to snow.
The ECMWF shown at Wednesday - Noon. Shows a weakening low in NoDak with a developing low to our south. The warmer component also evident in this scenario too.
The GEM (Canadian) shown at Wednesday - Noon. Shows a developed surface low over Illinois. This scenario would likely be an all snow scenario keeping the warmer air trapped to our southeast.
You see the differences right now. So unfortunately I can't give you more details other than we're eyeing a strong storm for the middle to end of the week to bring a wintry mix scenario to the upper midwest. We'll continue to closely monitor the forecast. We should have a clearer picture on what happens this weekend. But the single for Wednesday does point to higher precipitation amounts as noted below the QPF for Monday night through Wednesday night.
While there is some question marks on precipitation, temperatures do not have any. This pattern will yield a sharp drop in temperatures by the end of the week into the weekend as that strong trough shown above moves across the upper midwest.
The outlook for temperatures in days 8-14 suggests temperatures will likely be well below normal for a good chunk of the country as a result of this potent trough.
Storm Tracker 6 Chief Meteorologist