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Friday, May 27, 2016

Spotty rains to finish off May

Spotty rains to finish off May:

Earlier this week May 24-25 brought widespread showers and thunderstorms to many parts of the state, with many areas receiving over an inch of rainfall. Portions of Morrison, Pope, and Sibley Counties reported some hail, while strong winds caused some damages in Blue Earth and Steele Counties. A tornado was reported near Amelia Lake in Pope County. You can read more about these storms at the State Climatology Office web site.

For some areas record daily rainfall amounts were recorded. Some of these included: 1.54 inches at Detroit Lakes and 0.95 inches at Walker on May 24th; and 1.53 inches at Chatfield and 1.77 inches at Spring Valley on May 25th. With the added rainfall this week, over 30 climate stations now report at least 3 inches of rainfall for the month, after a very dry first half of May. A few spots have recorded over 4 inches, including Spring Valley, Lakefield, and Windom.

Looks like for most areas of the state May will end up with near normal mean monthly temperature, despite some ups and downs. Extremes ranged from 94°F at Marshall on May 6th to just 20°F at Hibbing on May 15th. Most climate stations are reporting a drier than normal month, but with four more days left and chances for showers many areas may yet see normal rainfall totals.

Greg Spoden, State Climatologist Retires:

After 31 years with the Minnesota DNR State Climatology office and the last 5 years as the State Climatologist Greg Spoden is retiring. He is widely respected and admired for his many decades of service to the state. His work has supported the efforts of academic faculty at the University of Minnesota, as well as many state and federal agencies. He has exhibited a mastery of many skills, but most especially at developing statistically based computer tools to assess and analyze the Minnesota state climate database. Along with many others I will greatly miss him. Further comments about Greg can be heard on the MPR "Morning Edition" web site.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

The National Integrated Heat Health Information System allows users to examine current heat advisories and warning around the country and keep up on heat related health issues. NIHHIS builds understanding of extreme heat, defines demand for climate services, develops science-based products and services from a sustained climate science research program, and improves capacity, communication, and societal understanding to reduce morbidity and mortality due to extreme heat.

An interesting article about the variation and changing climate of the North Atlantic Ocean region was published this week by the UK Met Office. The researchers show evidence that much of this change may be due to natural variability, but questions remain open about climate change effects.

MPR listener question:

Is Memorial Day (Monday) always the nicest day of the three day holiday weekend? Or is my memory playing tricks on me?


Greg Spoden of the Minnesota State Climatology Office analyzed Memorial Weekends since 1971, the year the holiday was designated as the last Monday in May. He used the Twin Cities climate records and found that the frequency of measurable rainfall over the Friday through Monday period shows some very interesting differences. Saturday and Sunday show a 45 percent occurrence of rainfall, Friday a 38 percent occurrence, but Monday shows only a 28 percent occurrence. So, I guess for planning purposes, outdoor events are least impacted on Monday of the holiday weekend.

Twin Cities Almanac for May 27th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 73 degrees F (plus or minus 9 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 52 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for May 27th:

MSP weather records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 95 degrees F in 1969; lowest daily maximum temperature of 44 degrees F in 1965: lowest daily minimum temperature is 34 degrees F in 1907; highest daily minimum temperature of 70 degrees F in 1969; record precipitation of 2.17 inches in 1978; and record snowfall is a trace in 1965.

Average dew point for May 27th is 48 degrees F, with a maximum of 70 degrees F in 2012 and a minimum of 25 degrees F in 2011.

State records for May 27th:

The state record low temperature for this date is 13 degrees F at Sandy Lake Dam (Aitkin County) in 1895. State record precipitation for this date is 4.22 inches at New York Mills (Otter Tail County) in 2012; and record snowfall is 5.0 inches at Virginia (St Louis County) in 1932.

Past Weather Features:

Probably the all-time coldest May 27th occurred statewide in 1907. Widespread frost and freezing temperatures occurred from north to south, with many areas reporting morning lows in the 20s F. It was just 28°F as far south as Grand Meadow. Many crop fields and gardens had to be replanted that spring.

With temperatures in the 30s F many northern communities reported 1 to 5 inches of snowfall on May 27, 1932. It was short-lived as temperatures rebounded into the 50s and 60s F the next day.

May 27, 1969 was the hottest in state history with over 60 communities reporting afternoon highs of 90 degrees F or greater. Many climate stations remained above 70 degrees F for all 24 hours with high dewpoints.


Mostly cloudy on Saturday with chances for showers and thunderstorms. Less so on Sunday and Monday with warmer temperatures and periods of sunny skies. Increased chances for showers and thunderstorms on Tuesday and Wednesday with cooler temperatures.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Widespread frosts May 14-18

Widespread frosts May 14-18:

A persistent dry high pressure system brought repeated frosts to many parts of Minnesota over the period May 14-18 this week. Many farmers have assessed the damage to crops, but in most cases corn was not significantly damaged because it was early enough in the growth cycle that the growing point was below the soil service. There was some damage to early planted soybean fields, but that represents a relatively small percentage of the acreage. Elsewhere some spotty damage to apple trees, grape vines, and fruit were reported.

In fact those 5 days also produced over 30 new daily record low temperature values across the observational climate networks in the state. A sampling of some of these new record low temperatures by date includes:
May 14: 22°F at Thief River Falls; 23°F at Ada and Red Lake Falls; 27°F at Long Prairie; 28°F at Walker; and 29°F at Collegeville and St Cloud.
May 15: 20°F at Hibbing (also coldest in the nation); 24°F at Orr; 26°F at Zumbrota; 27°F at Eveleth; 28°F at Caledonia; and 29°F at Austin.
May 16: 25°F at Kabetogama; 29°F at Litchfield; and 31°F at Forest Lake and Winona
May 17: 25°F at Isabella; and 28°F at Ely.
May 18: 31°F at Preston and Theilman

The dry air mass and absence of clouds produced some remarkable daily ranges in temperature this week: On May 16 Breckenridge (Wilkin County) reported a low of 32°F and a high of 72°F; on May 17th Baudette (Lake of the Woods County) reported a low of 27°F and a high of 66°F; and on May 18th Brimson (St Louis County) reported a morning low of 25°F and an afternoon high of 70°F.

New Seasonal Climate Outlooks:

The NOAA Climate Prediction Center released new seasonal climate outlooks on Thursday of this week (May 19). They called for warmer than normal temperatures to prevail across most of Minnesota over the June-August time period. Precipitation for the three months has equal chances of being above or below normal values over most of the state. Trends of recent years favor warmer and wetter than normal growing seasons across the state.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

Tropical Cyclone Roanu brought from 12 to 20 inches of rain earlier this week to portions of Sri Lanka where massive mudslides occurred. The storm moved up along the east coast of India and was churning off the coast of Bangladesh later this week producing waves up to 20 feet and wind gusts over 90 mph. This storm is expected to bring significant rains to coastal areas of Bangladesh and Myanmar over the coming weekend.

In addition that part of the world was experiencing a deadly Heat Wave this week with daily high temperatures in parts of India reaching 115°F and higher. In fact in the western state of Rajasthan, the town of Phalodi reported a high of 124°F on May 19th setting an all-time high temperature record for the country of India. The India Meteorological Department expects the Heat Wave to continue into next week.

This week NOAA features an article about the Fort McMurray Fire in Alberta, Canada and recent climate patterns there. Prior to the fire April snow cover in northern Alberta was well below average, and the vegetative fuels on the landscape dried out rapidly with warmer temperatures earlier this spring.

Recent studies by the University of East Anglia suggest that poor countries in the Horn of Africa and East Africa may experience a high frequency of heat stress sooner than other wealthier counties. These countries are also populated by cultures and societal infrastructure that are less capable of coping with the stresses of climate change.

Minnesota Public Radio aired a program on "Climate Change and Your Health" this week as part of MPR News Presents. This program was recorded live at the Rochester Civic Theater back on April 26th and is hosted by Cathy Wurzer. I was one of many guests interviewed there.

MPR listener question:

I have been a reader of your weekly blog "Minnesota WeatherTalk' for years and I also have a copy of your book Minnesota Weather Almanac (2n ed.). I wondered if there are any dates on the calendar where the same community holds the record for the all-time statewide high temperature and low temperature? It seems a very remote possibility.


Indeed. There are two dates on the calendar when the same Minnesota community holds the statewide high and low temperature records. One is May 12th where Hallock (Kittson County) reported an all-time state high of 98°F in 1900 and an all-time state low of just 11°F in 1946. The other is September 27th when Beardsley (Big Stone County) reported an all-time state low of just 13°F in 1893 and one year later, 1894 an all-time state high of 97°F. Obviously citizens in Hallock and Beardsley need to be careful with their gardening plans!

Twin Cities Almanac for May 20th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 71 degrees F (plus or minus 10 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 50 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for May 20th:

MSP weather records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 94 degrees F in 2009; lowest daily maximum temperature of 45 degrees F in 1931: lowest daily minimum temperature is 31 degrees F in 1892; highest daily minimum temperature of 69 degrees F in 2009; record precipitation of 1.14 inches in 1937; and record snowfall is 3.0 inches in 1892.

Average dew point for May 20th is 46 degrees F, with a maximum of 69 degrees F in 1974 and a minimum of 19 degrees F in 1954.

All-time state records for May 20th:

The state record high temperature for this date is 100 degrees F at Fairmont (Martin County) in 1934. The state record low temperature for this date is 16 degrees F at Embarrass (St Louis County) in 2002. State record precipitation for this date is 4.83 inches at Winton (St Louis County) in 1970; and record snowfall is 4.8 inches at Virginia (St Louis County) in 1931.

Words of the Week: acclimate and acclimatize

These words are often used synonymously to refer to the process by which a living organism adapts to a change of environment. Sometimes acclimatize refers to the use of human ingenuity in adaptation, such as the utilization of air conditioning in the desert southwest or employing special diets to survive on polar expeditions. And on the other hand acclimate is sometimes used to refer to natural adaptation, such as the adjustment in the eyes which takes place in moving from inside a somewhat darkened building out into the bright sun, or a change in our respiration (breathing) when we are exposed to a hotter, more humid environment.

Past Weather Features:

Widespread snow and snow flurries were observed around the state on May 20, 1892. With morning temperatures in the 20s and 30s F many observers reported 1 to 4 inches of snow before the noon hour.

On a statewide basis the coldest May 20th occurred in 1907. Morning low temperatures fell into the 20s F causing a widespread hard freeze and damage to many crops. Hallock in the Red River Valley reported just 18°F, while in the south both Grand Meadow and Zumbrota reported 25°F.

Winter returned briefly to northern Minnesota over May 20-21, 1931. With temperatures in the 30s F many observers reported from 1 to 6 inches of snow. Temperatures rebounded into the 50s F the next day, quickly melting the snow.

May 20, 1934 was the hottest in state history. Most communities reported record-setting high temperatures for the day and at least 30 climate stations reported afternoon temperatures of 90°F or higher. Six more record-setting hot days occurred before the end of the month.

Heavy rains prevailed across the state over May 20-22, 1953. Many areas received 1-2 inches of rainfall, with some thunder and hail in places. Litchfield, Moose Lake, Cloquet, and Elk River reported over 3 inches of rain with some localized flooding.


Mostly sunny weekend with above normal temperatures. Increasing cloudiness on Sunday night with a chance for showers and thunderstorms on Monday. Continued chance for showers through the middle of next week with temperatures closer to normal for this time of year.





Friday, May 13, 2016

Welcome rain follows heat

Welcome rains arrive:

After starting the month with 8 consecutive dry days, interspersed with some record-setting high daily temperatures (90s F in many areas), and low relative humidity (7-15 percent range) some widespread welcome rains blanketed the state this week. Total amounts were generally less than an inch in many northern and central counties, but many southern Minnesota observers reported over 2 inches, including Pipestone, Worthington, Albert Lea, Fairmont, New Ulm, St James, and Caledonia. A handful of observers reported over three inches for the week including Windom, Lakefield, and Sherburn (3.93”).

Prior to these rains there were 58 new daily high temperature records broken or tied around the state over May 6th and 7th. Some of these included:
May 6th: 90°F at Moose Lake; 91°F at Grand Rapids and Red Lake Falls; 92°F at Duluth, MSP, and Redwood Falls; 93°F at Milan.
May 7th: 90°F at Brainerd and St Peter; 91°F at Waseca, Gaylord, Morris, and Sandy Lake Dam; 92°F at Forest Lake, Browns Valley, and Lake Wilson; 93°F at Madison; and 94F at Marshall.

In addition many areas of the state reported relative humidity readings ranging from just 7 to 19 percent, a condition that provoked a "Red Flag" Warning by the National Weather Service and a warning of high fire danger.

A couple of other weather features that were unusual over the May 6 to 7 period: smoke from northern Minnesota fires was carried on northwesterly winds into the Twin Cities Metro Area Friday night and into Saturday morning causing an air quality advisory to be issued. Many residents closed their windows to keep out the smell of burning wood. The cold front that brought the smoke also brought much cooler air across the state. Temperatures fell from the 90s F to the upper 30s F and low 40s F at places like Duluth, Wolf Ridge, Ely, and Floodwood. At Lake Kabetogama the temperature fell from 85°F to 30°F producing widespread frost in the area; while at Duluth the temperature fell from 92°F to the low 40s F with snow flurries!

First balloon meteorological observations:

This past Monday (May 9th) marked the 154th anniversary of the famous balloon ascents of British scientists James Glaisher and Henry Coxwell. They made 18 ascents in a gas filled balloon, the first of which was on May 9, 1862. They were the first to carry meteorological instruments aloft to make measurements of the character of the atmosphere. They established that nocturnal inversions were common and that lapse rate (change in temperature with altitude) can vary dramatically. They read their instruments on night ascents by wearing miner's lamps (the balloon was filled with highly combustible hydrogen!). In one famous ascent to an altitude of 30,000 ft, Glaisher lost consciousness and Coxwell, who was groggy and had numb, frozen hands, still found a way to pull the valve-cord hard enough with his teeth so that enough gas was released to allow them to descend back to Earth.

Weekly weather potpourri:

If you are interested in the network of State Climatologists across the USA, NOAA has provided a web site to find them and their contact information. The American Association of State Climatologists (AASC) will have their annual meeting in Sante Fe, NM starting on June 28th next month. This organization provides data and pragmatic climate services to every state in the USA.

A study this week from the Geophysical Research Letters explains why the 2015-2016 El Nino in the equatorial Pacific Ocean was so strong and long-lived. It was connected to sea surface temperature behavior in the Central Pacific Ocean as well.

According to NOAA-NCEP Alaska has started the year 2016 with the warmest ever January through April period, averaging over 11°F above normal. So far this year over 550 new daily high temperature records have been tied or broken within the Alaska climate network. In the month of April alone 17 days brought new record high temperatures to Anchorage.

MPR Listener Question:

Last year at least 24 dates brought significant hail to some parts of Minnesota. When is the peak of the hail season in our state and how many dates per year bring hail?


The date with the highest frequency of hail varies around the state, but in general historical data show the peak period for hail to occur is the last week of May and first full week of June for most locations in the state. Overall on a statewide basis there are typically 10-20 dates with reports of hail each year, with 3-7 dates showing reports of large hail (three quarters inch diameter or larger). Observers around Mora, MN reported 1 inch diameter hail earlier this month on May 6th.

Twin Cities Almanac for May 13th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 69 degrees F (plus or minus 11 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 48 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for May 13th:

MSP weather records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 94 degrees F in 2001; lowest daily maximum temperature of 39 degrees F in 1907: lowest daily minimum temperature is 31 degrees F in 1907 and 1980; highest daily minimum temperature of 70 degrees F in 2001; record precipitation of 1.95 inches in 1911; and record snowfall is a trace in 1902 and 1935.

Average dew point for May 13th is 44 degrees F, with a maximum of 70 degrees F in 1998 and a minimum of 20 degrees F in 2011.

All-time state records for May 13th:

The state record high temperature for this date is 95 degrees F at Beardsley (Big Stone County) in 1894, at Rothsay (Wilkin County) in 1977, and at Granite Falls in 2007. The state record low temperature for this date is 10 degrees F at Tower (St Louis County) in 1997. State record precipitation for this date is 4.63 inches at St Francis (Anoka County) in 1999; and record snowfall is 3.0 inches at Argyle (Marshall County) in 1924.

Past Weather Features:

Snow fall across portions of the Red River Valley and north-central Minnesota over May 12-14, 1907 bringing a halt to planting of small grains and potatoes. The snow was short lived as temperatures soon warmed into the 50s and 60s F.

Widespread hard frost on May 13, 1918 caused many farmers to have to replant crops. Temperatures fell into the teens and twenties F from the Iowa border north to Canada. At some locations the daytime temperature never rose out of the 40s F.

On a statewide basis perhaps 1977 brought the hottest May 13th in history with over 25 communities reporting afternoon temperatures in the 90s F. It reached 90°F as far north as Walker, Thorhult, and Hibbing. May of 1977 was the warmest in state history, so there were many more days of 90°F temperatures.

Over May 11-13, 1997 a cold front brought snowfall to many parts of the state. Observers in northeastern Minnesota reported up to 3.5 inches of snow. This was followed by February-like temperatures with lows in the teens and twenties F. On May 13th Tower reported a high of 35°F and a low of just 10°F.


The Fishing Opener in Minnesota on Saturday (May 14) looks to be a cold one with temperatures in the 30s and 40s F to start the day. Only some modest winds will prevent frost across many southern parts of the state. Northeastern areas of the state are likely to see some lows in the 20s F and perhaps even a few snow flurries. Daytime highs there may just be in the 40s F on Saturday, warming into the 50s F on Sunday. Warmer yet on Monday and Tuesday with slight chances for rain. Temperatures will climb to normal values by the end of next week.




Friday, May 6, 2016

Comments on last spring frost

Last Spring Frost?

The agricultural planting season has progressed well with a majority (close to 75 percent) of the corn crop planted and more than a third of the soybean acreage planted. In addition gardeners are removing mulches, planting potted plants outdoors and putting in garden vegetable seeds. Some have even mowed their lawns already. Many have been asking if the last spring frost is behind us.

For the Twin Cities Metro Area the last sub-freezing temperature reported at the MSP Airport was on April 12th with 27°F, but surrounding communities like Stillwater (26°F), New Hope (32°F), and Chanhassen (32°F) reported frost on April 29th.

For most other places in the state I think the last spring frost has already occurred as well. For southern Minnesota communities the last sub-freezing temperatures were on April 13th including:
30°F at Marshall
28°F at Albert Lea
27°F at Zumbrota
In western and central Minnesota counties the last sub-freezing temperatures were during the last week of April, including:
32°F at Canby and Milan on the 29th
31°F at Collegeville and St Cloud on the 29th
30°F at Moose Lake on the 29th
In northwestern Minnesota counties of the Red River Valley, sub-freezing temperatures occurred a recently as May 1st, including:
24°F at Thief River Falls
31°F at Detroit Lakes and Roseau
32°F at Moorhead

Given the forecasts for the balance of May, there will be some nights with cooler than normal temperatures, but it is likely that the communities listed above have already seen their last frost of the spring occur.

Of course areas of north-central (Bemidji, International Falls) and northeastern Minnesota (Tower and Embarrass) may very well continue to have frosts in late May and early June, because the gardening season always starts later in those area.

Warm Temperatures:

This spring so far, March 1st to May 6th has brought warmer than normal temperatures (roughly 4°F above average) and wetter than normal conditions to most areas of the state. The March-April two-month period in 2016 ranks among the ten warmest such periods in state history back to 1895.

Prior to Thursday, May 5th the only period that brought 80 degrees F temperatures to the state was over April 14-17 last month, when over 60 Minnesota communities reported afternoon highs of 80°F or higher, topped by 86°F at Wheaton (Traverse County). These values were topped in western and northwestern Minnesota on Thursday, May 5th this week, with many areas reporting 90°F or warmer. Roseau and Hallock topped the list with 93°F. That was a new daily high temperature record for Roseau. Warroad also set a new record daily high with 91°F on the 5th, as did Thorhult with a reading of 90°F, while Fosston tied the daily record with a reading of 90°F.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

My wife Cindy and daughter Emma are taking me this week to hear Paul McCartney at Target Center (a birthday present). Like most people I have my favorite Beatles songs, many of which relate to the weather. In fact last year a science writer posted a piece in the UK's Daily Telegraph where she hypothesized that the Beatles popularity in was at least in part enhanced by their singing about the weather which most Brits relate to. 48 of their songs relate to the weather and George Harrison wrote "Here Comes the Sun" after the cold, cloudy winter of 1969.

A large wildfire around Fort McMurray in Alberta, Canada was burning out of control this week. It has burned over 200,000 acres and destroyed over 1600 structures, as well as causing the evacuation of over 90,000 people. Persistent warm (temperatures in the 70s and 80s F) and dry climate conditions across Alberta had set up the suitable conditions for this fire to occur. Sunny and dry conditions are expected to prevail until Sunday (May 8th) when some welcome showers are forecast to reach this area of Alberta. Through their Earth Observatory web site NASA posted several images of the fire.

Environment Canada was releasing air quality alerts for portions of eastern Alberta and western Saskatchewan because of the intense smoke from the fire.

Other news this week out of Canada is that climate change, notably warmer temperatures have provoked more algal growth in the Athabasca oil sands of northern Alberta. Scientists from Queen's University studied climate and lake sediments from 23 remote lakes far removed from industrial pollution. They believe the increased algal production in these lakes is driven by aerial nutrient fertilization (atmospheric deposition) enhanced by a warmer temperature pattern. You can read more at the Science Daily web site.

EOS, published by the American Geophysical Union features an article about the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) used as a tool to improve and validate climate models against measured climate data sets. A great deal of work is being done to improve the current generation of climate models, now number twenty in total.

Millions of people in India were relieved to see some significant Pre-Monsoon rains occur across their country this week bringing relief from a Heat Wave that had started in late April and the first two days of May. Temperatures had soared well above 100F during the Heat Wave and caused widespread suffering and even loss of life. In Orissa the thermometer had measured a temperature of 119F the highest reading ever in the month of April. The rains this week were also welcome from the standpoint of drought relief in some parts of the country. You can read more at the CNN News web site.

The U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit from NOAA announced this week a new Climate Change Atlas that shows current and projected geographic distribution of 134 tree species and 147 bird species across the Eastern USA. The atlas can be used to assess future suitable habit for a range of species.

MPR listener question:

I noticed in the afternoon weather round-up on Thursday, May 5th at 3pm that many northwestern Minnesota communities were reporting 90 degrees F or greater, including Hallock, Moorhead, Roseau, Fosston, Warroad, Thief River Falls, Thorhult, and Crookston. Yet across to the east about 300 miles at Grand Marais, the temperature was 41°F. How often does this range in temperature occur in Minnesota?


More often than you think, especially this time of year. When the Minnesota landscape is warming up in the spring, but not yet covered by farm crops the soils can warm dramatically, especially in western counties. Conversely the temperatures of the areas around Lake Superior are still modified significantly by Lake Superior, which is slow to warm after the cold winter conditions. As a result temperature differences of 50 degrees F or greater can be observed across Minnesota at the same moment in time during the months of April and May. On May 19, 2009 at 4:00 pm the temperature was 100°F at Milan (Chippewa County), but just 35°F at Grand Marais Harbor (Cook County). I might further add that this often happens under conditions of very low relative humidity and bright sunshine. Relative humidity values on Thursday, May 5th ranged from just 8 to 19 percent in northwestern Minnesota, but were closer to 80 percent at Grand Marais.

Twin Cities Almanac for May 6th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 67 degrees F (plus or minus 12 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 46 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for May 6th:

MSP weather records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 89 degrees F in 1896 and again in 1934; lowest daily maximum temperature of 35 degrees F in 1931: lowest daily minimum temperature is 25 degrees F in 1989; highest daily minimum temperature of 67 degrees F in 1896; record precipitation of 1.51 inches in 1939; and record snowfall of 6.6 inches in 1984.

Average dew point for May 6th is 37 degrees F, with a maximum of 66 degrees F in 1965 and a minimum of 14 degrees F in 1989.

All-Time State Records for May 6th:

The state record high temperature for this date is 98 degrees F at Grand Meadow (Mower County) in 1934. The state record low temperature for this date is 12 degrees F at Alborn (St Louis County) in 1944. State record precipitation for this date is 3.78 inches at Lake Wilson (Murray County) in 2012; and record snowfall is 10.0 inches at Roseau (Roseau County) in 1938.

Past Weather Features:

May 6, 1934 was the hottest in state history, with 20 climate stations reporting daytime temperatures of 90F or higher. It was a precursor to one of the hottest months of May in state history. Hundreds of daily maximum temperature records were set that May.

In both 1925 and 1944 low temperatures fell into the teens and twenties F on May 6th. A hard freeze affected even the southern counties and damaged emerged crops. Potatoes and corn crops had to be replanted in some areas.

A rare winter snow storm crossed the state over May 5-6, 1938 dropping several inches of snowfall. Northern counties measured 3 to 10 inches. The snow was short-lived as temperatures warmed from the 30s F into the 60s F by May 8th.

Persistent heavy rains delayed farm field work during the first week of May in 1964. Many areas of the state received 2-3 inches of rainfall. Planting was delayed over a week to allow fields to dry out.

May 6, 1965 brought a deadly tornado outbreak to the Twin Cities Metro Area. Six tornadoes occurred during the evening hours injuring nearly 700 people and killing 14. It was the second consecutive day of tornadoes in the state. The Minnesota State Climatology Office provides a good retrospective on this significant weather event.


Generally a sunny weekend with near seasonal temperatures. Increasing cloudiness on Monday with a chance for showers and thunderstorms. A more active weather pattern will dominate next week with cooler temperatures, persistent cloudiness and a chance for showers each day.
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