Duluth News Tribune, Minn.
Jan. 19--The coldest temperatures of this winter are expected to descend on the Northland over the next 48 hours, bottoming out Friday when thermometers across the region may not get above zero all day.
But it will be Friday when temperatures plummet, with morning low temperatures hitting minus-30 and colder from the Iron Range north. A minus-40 reading along the Rainy River or in Embarrass or Tower is not out of the question.
Temperatures could fall below the rarely seen minus-20 mark at Duluth International Airport on Friday morning.
Those are battery draining, bring-in-the-dog temperatures, with frostbite and hypothermia possible in minutes for people not properly dressed.
And it may be the first chance for the weather service to issue its new "extreme cold warning." In the past, even if it’s been dangerously cold, the weather service didn’t have a formal message warning people unless it also was windy and a wind-chill advisory or warning was warranted.
Under the new warning, being tested in North Dakota and Minnesota, extreme-cold warnings will be issued whenever it’s minus-40 or colder.
Until now, the coldest temperatures this winter have come during a mid-December blast when Duluth hit minus-16 (Dec. 14) and last weekend, when International Falls hit minus-34 (Jan. 16).
The cold will linger Saturday, with highs in single digits, and begin a slow climb to normal and above. Temperatures will moderate to seasonal and above next week, with high temperatures in the mid-20s by Tuesday.
Average temperatures bottom out at this point each January and then, on average, begin the long rise to summer starting about Jan. 25.