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Showing posts from August, 2018

Climate Summary for August

Climate Summary for August:
After a warm first half of the month when many climate stations reported record-setting warm overnight minimum temperatures, the climate moderated and most observers are reporting a mean monthly temperature that ranges from 1 to 2 degrees F warmer than normal. The extremes for the month were 99°F at Preston (Fillmore County) on the 14th, and 34°F at International Falls (Koochiching County) on the 2nd.

For August rainfall, most northern counties reported below normal totals for the month, while many central and southern counties reported above normal rainfall for the month. The heaviest rainfall events came near the beginning of the month, and then again near the end of the month. During the course of the month 28 new daily rainfall records were reported in the state climate observer network. Extreme rainfall totals for the month ranged from over 11 inches at Caledonia (Houston County) to just over 1 inch at Browns Valley (Traverse County).

The other…

Climate Signatures in 2018

Climate Signatures in 2018: A certain high degree of variability is evident in the Minnesota climate statistics so far this year. Some examples:

-For the January through August period, both average statewide temperature and precipitation are pretty close to the 30-yr averages.

-But for the May-August period this year ranks as the 2nd warmest historically, trailing only the growing season of 1988. And this is mostly thanks to very warm nights.

-Though the statewide May-August rainfall has been near normal, there is great disparity across the state. The southwestern counties have had the 2nd wettest May-August period in history with an average of nearly 23 inches (2nd only to 1993), while the south-central counties have reported the 8th wettest May-August period with an average of nearly 22 inches. Conversely, northwestern counties, which are in a moderate drought, have reported an average of less than 10 inches for the May-August period, ranking as the 12th driest in history back …

Warm May-July Confirmed

Warm May-July Confirmed: Earlier this month NOAA scientists confirmed that for the 48 contiguous states of the USA the three month period from May through July was the warmest in history, back to 1895, surpassing the previous record year for the 3-month period set way back in 1934.

Specifically for the same time period (May-July) how did Minnesota rank? On a statewide basis the May-July 2018 period was the 6th warmest back to 1895. The only warmer 3-month periods were in 1934, 1977, 1987, 1988, and 2012. However within our state boundaries there was some regional disparity. Here are the rankings by region of the state:

NW-4th warmest

NC-3rd warmest

NE-9th warmest

WC-6th warmest

C-10th warmest

EC-8th warmest

SW-7th warmest

SC-9th warmest

SE-5th warmest

This follows a warming trend which shows that since 2000 the May-July period has warmed by about 1.5 degrees F on a statewide basis. Speaking of warmth, through the first half of August Minnesota reports average temperatures that a…

August Starts Wet for Some

August Starts Wet for Some: The first five days of the month brought some heavy rains to many parts of the state as many climate stations reported over 1.5 inches. There were strong thunderstorms over portions of central Minnesota over August 3-4 with a weak tornado reported on the ground for 11 miles across portions of Kandiyohi and Meeker Counties (see State Climatology Office Summary).

Some portions of Stearns and Benton Counties reported over 3 inches of rain. Lake Wilson, Moose Lake, Brainerd, and Gull Lake all reported new daily rainfall records on the 4th with amounts ranging from 1.5 to 2.5 inches. Lake Wilson (Murray County) with 30.17 inches, Redwood Falls (Redwood County) with 30.26 inches, and St James (Watonwan County) with 31.63 inches since January 1 are reported some of their wettest values in history for the first 8 months of the year, surpassed only by the wet years of 1979 and 1993.

Conversely portions of Roseau and Lake of the Woods Counties remain in moderate dr…

July Climate Summary

July Climate Summary:
After beginning the month very warm, temperatures moderated for much of the second half of the month from below normal to near normal. Still most climate stations reported a warmer than normal July, with average monthly values ranging from 1 to 3 degrees above average. A few places in the state reported slightly below normal mean monthly temperatures. The extremes ranged from 97 degrees F at Theilman (Wabasha County) on the 13th to 37 degrees F at Goodridge (Marshall County) on the 27th.


During the first half of the month three daytime maximum temperature records were set or tied within the climate station network, while 36 warm nighttime low temperature records were set or tied. Numerous Heat Advisories and Excessive Heat Warnings were issued by the National Weather Service during the first half of July. In the second half of the month no temperature records were set.


Most climate observers reported above normal rainfall during July. The wettest areas of …