Has this summer seemed exceptionally glorious? That's because it has been, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says.
As the season reached its halfway point, the DNR released its new Summer Glory Index (the counterpart to the Winter Misery Index) for the Twin Cities. It takes into account ideal temperature, dew point and precipitation to determine how glorious the summer is compared to years past.
And 2015 has been pretty perfect. There haven't been any major heat waves (the Twin Cities has only topped 90 degrees once), no "consistently unbearable" humidity levels, and no widespread excessive rainfall (remember last summer? Uff da), the DNR notes.
In fact, it's the third most glorious summer on record so far – only 1922 and 2008 were better.
The DNR makes sure to point out this is no guarantee the weather in second half of summer will be as wonderful – nine of the top 10 summers up through July 15 went downhill after the midway point.
MPR News says long-range forecasts are hinting at the possibility of an early August heat wave, noting it could be the hottest stretch of summer this year.
Toasty temps, humidity returns
After a pretty spectacular week of weather, we'll get another taste of toasty temperatures and humidity this weekend, the National Weather Service notes.
Afternoon highs Thursday are expected to warm into the mid-80s for much of the state, and it will feel a bit more humid as the dew point rises into the 60s, the weather service says.
Thunderstorms could develop in northwestern and west-central Minnesota round midnight Thursday, moving southeast across Minnesota through Friday morning. Some could be strong to severe.
Expect warmer temperatures – in the 80s and lower 90s across the state – and even higher humidity levels for Friday, the weather service notes.
Storms could redevelop Friday afternoon, mainly in southeastern Minnesota, and those also could be strong or severe, the weather service says.
Conditions are expected to improve Saturday as the front moves out of the area. Humidity should be slightly lower and temperatures slightly cooler, in the 80s.
The chance for showers and thunderstorms returns Sunday, as highs climb back up into the mid-80s and low 90s, the weather service adds.