Storm Center PM Update – Friday, March 19: Strong warming for the first weekend of Spring

Forecast

It is windy and warm and the solar snowplow is on maximum power. The snowmelt continues with temperatures rising through the 50s, aided by a brisk south wind.

2 PM

Tonight skies will remain clear, and the south wind will continue to blow so we could be melting snow cover all night long. Lows will be slightly above freezing, in the mid 30s.

Spring officially starts tomorrow at 4:37 AM. The day will feel like a spring day, although temperatures will be more than ten degrees above normal for the first day of the new season. Skies will be sunny in the morning and partly cloudy in the afternoon. It will be very windy, with south winds of 20-40 mph. But this will be a warming wind, so afternoon highs will be in the upper 50s to low 60s East River, and the upper 60s in Rapid City and the west. Western South Dakota could have some light rain showers Saturday night.

Sunday will also be breezy, starting as a south wind that will turn to the west. It will be partly cloudy and mild, with the upper 50s East River to the low 60s in central South Dakota. There could be some sprinkles in Sioux Falls and the south, or light rain showers in areas north of I-90.

Sioux Falls and SE KELOLAND could get some light rain showers on Monday due to a departing cold front. The rest of the area will be partly cloudy and dry. Temperatures will be cooler, in the low 50s.

Tuesday and Wednesday look wet, especially around Sioux Falls and SE KELOLAND. Today’s forecast models have moved the heaviest precipitation farther to the southeast, more into NW Iowa and SW Minnesota, where over an inch of rainfall is possible. Sioux Falls is now more in the half-inch category, with more rain than snow – though a wintry mix will be possible Tuesday and Wednesday.

Skies should turn partly cloudy on Thursday and Friday as temperatures start to recover. We anticipate temperatures will remain a little above-normal through the first couple days of April.

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