We had a trace of rain yesterday which amounted to a few sprinkles. Temps this morning are below freezing once again. We currently have 28° at 6 am. Our freeze warning continues through 9 am.
It has been pretty boring being a weather person this spring with few if any events to get excited about. It has been a concern as we go through the last month of spring locked in drought conditions. There is more on this in the forecast discussion (in blue). There is a 20% chance of rain showers this afternoon and evening. Other than that we don’t have a decent chance of rain until next week.
Much of the southern half of Lower Michigan received half the normal amount of rain over the past 30 days. Northern Lower Michigan is running a little above average but nothing overwhelming, while it’s a mixed bag in the U.P. though fairly close to normal. A soaking rain on Sunday slipped by to the south of Michigan.
- Freeze expected again tonight / possible Thursday morning- I expect tonight (Wednesday morning) actually has the greatest risk of freezing temperatures of any day this week. I believe this since this coming night, unlike this morning, we will have the surface high moving into the area while the upper low will finally be moving off the east. That will allow decoupling and temperatures should have no problem falling into the mid to upper 20s north and near 30 inland south. We will more than likely issue another freeze warning for tonight. Typically do not have two headlines for the same thing, so we will wait for the current freeze warning to expire before we issue the one for TONIGHT. The question is then is will we need one for Thursday morning? I am thinking we will likely need at least a frost advisory and possibly a freeze warning northern sections. The upper high is moving in by then and the surface high will be overhead. So winds will be near calm and skies should be clear. I could see lows getting colder than our models are suggesting. - Dry conditions into this coming weekend- For starters, as of the 10th of May, at Grand Rapids, this is the driest year to date (10th of May) since 2001! Grand Rapids was 5.19 inches below normal for total yearly precipitation, which is a little below only 1/2 of normal. At Muskegon it is the driest year to date, since 1989! Muskegon is 5.78 inches below normal for the year. Going to the Midwest Climate Center, climate Group 8 (Grand Raids, Holland, South Have, and Kalamazoo) is, for January through April, is the driest since 1958! The 5.84 inch mean precipitation for this group was only a 1/2 inch wetter than the driest year, 1934 (5.31"). This is the 4th driest on record (1895 to 2021). By the way, the median for Group 8, for January through April is 9.37". I hope, by now, I have convinced you this has been unusually dry so far this year across the area. I see no reason to believe in the next 5 days this will change. We have an upper ridge moving in with the polar jet solidly holding south of this area. The best we can do for rain is this afternoon, getting some isolated showers inland of US-131. The upper cold pool will still overhead, so we will see some instability showers, mostly well east of US-131 (where the instability is greater). The Equilibrium level there is forecast near 14000 ft. That puts cloud top temperatures below 0F. So precipitation will be more than possible. It will just be isolated through. After that we get an upper ridge to move over us for Thursday while a surface high is over us. On Friday we do get another northern stream shortwave coming through the area so isolated showers would be possible in the afternoon. Even so the surface high remains over this area into Sunday. Most locations will likely see no precipitation at all from today through Sunday. - Possible change to warmer and wetter next week- Things may change next week. The MJO is forecast to become to weak into influence the upper level wave pattern by then. Also by next week the models show the NAO and AO remaining weakly negative while the PNA is also negative. That is a classic wet pattern for this area. Beyond that, the models all show, in one form or another, an digging Pacific shortwave that should be strong enough to bring the polar jet north of us. That in turn will bring us back into a pattern that would bring rain into this area. It`s to early to have much detail about this through. So who knows, maybe it will figure out way to rain meaningfully here yet this month?