Sunday, February 13, 2011

Who Saw 48 Coming???

Today's nearly record-setting warmth (48 was three degrees off the record) surprised everyone, including the local forecasters. We're not meteorologists at TMF, but today's warmth seemed even more amazing because of the significant snow pack.

Here were the high temperatures forecast for Sunday as of Saturday night. The temperatures in parentheses were Sunday's forecast highs as of Friday night. All forecasters -- to varying degrees (no pun intended, but if it makes you laugh we'll take credit) -- latched on to the late-developing trend, but not nearly enough.

A pop quiz grade on today's temperatures, using a scale of A (within two degrees), B (within four degrees), C (within six degrees), D (within eight degrees) and F (more than eight degrees), follows:

WCCO: D 41 (38)
KSTP: D* 40 (36)
FOX: D 41 (38)
KARE: C 43 (39)
Strib: F 38 (36)
NWS: D 40 (38)

*One interesting note. A Facebook post last night from social media guru KSTP's Chikage Windler read as follows:
I'm forecasting a high of 40...but one computer model was going upper 40s earlier and just updated with a forecast high of 51 for the Metro!!! Not buying it, b/c of the deep snow pack, but could possibly see low to mid 40s.
Our friendly advice to Chikage: Buy that model!


  1. Bill

    Interesting I went back to Chikage's 10pm forecast, the info she got was just before her forecast and I'm not sure weather she had time to change the graphics but she said something like, going with 40 but at this point low to mid 40's is not out of the question. That is what I remembered from last night when I watched it. lol

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  3. D's and F's are harsh. Temps are very hard to predict when it comes to how much will the warm air 5000 feet above the ground mix down due to wind.

    NWS Twin Cities gives a meteorology lesson on it.

  4. agreed CWY2190 How did anyone know that the chnook winds would presist that far to the east causing mix down that you alluded to, seens to me a very rare occurance....I will pay attention to that the next time around lol

  5. There was an extreme occurrence of it last spring or the spring before. Temps were forecasted to be around 75 but it ending up getting close to 90.

  6. I can see as time goes by and I learn more about forecasting that there can be a "mass consumers" perspective and a "fellow meteorologists" perspective. I understand that from a meteorologist's perspective that yesterday's warmth was hard to predict. But from a casual viewer/outsider perspective, the fact that half the forecasters missed the temperature by eight degrees seems borderline bust.

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