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Expect more cold to kick off 2018

Image credit: National Weather Service Duluth

Northern Minnesota is going to be cold and dry this week, amid a colder than usual winter caused by a La Niña pattern.

Meteorologist Geoff Grochocinski of the National Weather Service's Duluth office said Monday that cooler than usual water temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean are causing colder than normal air temperatures here in Minnesota, since the air jet stream is pulled south and cold Canadian air is free to shift down to the U.S.

"Overall, we are in a weather pattern that will favor a colder-than normal winter, for much of the winter," he said.

There would be a brief respite during daylight hours Tuesday, Jan. 2, with temperatures forecast to be 5-10 degrees throughout the region, but starting Tuesday night, the mercury dips back again, he said. The cold will stick around until Saturday, when relatively mild air returns.

Other than a possible storm late in the week, the chance for precipitation will likely be low throughout the next few days, Grochocinski said.

"For next week, we're not expecting much snow at all," he said.

The NWS Duluth's website also said the arctic air would come back Tuesday.

"A dusting of snow will blow through the Northland Tuesday afternoon and evening with a passing Canadian Clipper, followed by frigid arctic air," it said. "The frigid weather will then continue through early Saturday. Saturday might be more mild."

As of Monday, the NWS forecast a 30 percent chance of snowfall for Brainerd for Tuesday, Jan. 2, and a high temperature of about 9 degrees. Tuesday night's low will dip down to 8 degrees below zero.

Wednesday will be mostly sunny, NWS said, with a high near 2 degrees. A northwest wind from 5 to 10 mph is expected.

Thursday is forecast with the same high temperature as Wednesday, 2 degrees.

That night, the temperature will dip down to a low nearly 16 degrees below zero.

Friday will also be sunny and cold, with a high temp about 4 degrees. That night will be partly cloudy, with a low around 9 degrees below zero.

Saturday's high is forecast to be near 12 degrees. There is an (unquantified as yet) chance of snow that night, continuing into Sunday and Sunday night.

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