Skip to main content


Cool and Wet Pattern to Prevail

Cool and Wet Pattern to Prevail: So far this year 62-65% of all the calendar days have brought temperatures that are below normal. The late spring has taxed everyone’s patience, but especially gardeners and farmers.

The temperature in the Twin Cities finally reached 82 degrees F on May 16 this week, the first such reading since last September 17th, a period of 240 days. If you think that seems like a long time, the climate history in the Twin Cities shows that from September 17, 1911 to June 22, 1912 there were no days with temperatures of 82 degrees F or higher, a period of 280 days, 77 percent of a year.

Nocturnal thunderstorms on Wednesday night this week brought a half inch to an inch of rain to portions of southeastern Minnesota. Many were awakened by the thunder and lightning, a precursor to what is expected this coming weekend.

The new seasonal outlook for the USA released on Thursday (May 16) suggests that for our region of the country we will see a cooler and wetter than…
Recent posts

Heavy rains and snow this week

Heavy rains and snow this week: Wednesday, May 8th brought from 1 to 2 inches of rain to many parts of the state in a storm that last for many hours. Late in the day the precipitation turned to snow in many northern communities dropping from 2 to 10 inches in portions of northeastern Minnesota. This was a distinctly untimely storm as many spring road projects had begun with excavations and Minnesota farmers were busy trying to plant crops.

Several climate stations reported new daily record amounts of rainfall, including:
2.10” at Stillwater
1.92” at Spring Valley
1.87” at Rosemount
1.84” at Faribault
1.65” at Zumbrota and Red Wing
1.60” at Marshall

The evening snow storm turned out to be record-setting for many communities as well. Those reporting new record daily snowfall amounts included:
8.3” at Duluth
6.6” at Wright (Carlton County)
6.0” at Cloquet (Carlton County), Isabella (Lake County), and Isle (Aitkin County)
5.0” at Wolf Ridge (Lake County)
2.0” at Babbitt and Cotton (St…

April Climate Summary

April Climate Summary:
For the second consecutive year the month of April was cool, ranging from 1 to 4 degrees F cooler than normal for most climate stations in Minnesota. Extremes for the month ranged from -6°F at Marshall on the 14th to 86°F at Windom, Waseca, and Winnebago on the 22nd. Though it was a cool month, Minnesota reported the nation’s lowest temperature on only two days during the month.

April was wetter than normal around the state, especially so in southwestern and southeastern counties. The state average total precipitation was nearly 3 inches making it the 16th wettest April in history. In south-central counties it was the 9th wettest April in history with an average precipitation of 4.75 inches, while in southwestern counties it was the 4th wettest April with average precipitation of 5.40 inches. Lake Wison (Murray County) reported its wettest April in history at 7.55 inches, while Lamberton (Redwood County) reported its 3rd wettest April with a total of 5.91 …

April weather update

April weather update: Rains continued to fall over the past week, especially in southwestern counties. Many areas have accumulated over 6 inches of precipitation so far this month. Lake Wilson (Murray County) has seen nearly 7 inches. In fact the southwestern counties with an average total over 4.30 inches are already in the top ten wettest Aprils in that part of the state. Yet more precipitation is expected on Saturday, and again on Sunday night and Monday before we close out the month on Tuesday.
Things I thought I would never see: At some recent public meetings about climate change in Minnesota I was asked by members of the audience to describe some characteristic changes in weather and climate that I never thought I would see. After contemplating for a while I came up with a brief list:

A 100°F reading at Ada, MN on April 21, 1980, along with zero precipitation that month
80°F dew points in MN, starting in 1983
10” of rain in six hours at MSP, July 23, 1987
44 days of 90 F …

Wet April Continues

Wet April Continues:

According to the Minnesota State Climatology Office the first widespread heavy rain event of 2019 produced minor flooding, rapid stream rises, and even a road-closing mudslide in southern Minnesota on Wednesday April 17, 2019. The heaviest rainfalls occurred in a swath from New Ulm to Hastings, but many other climate stations reported significant rainfalls from 1 to 2 inches. A mudslide along Highway 169 north of St Peter caused the highway to be closed for a while.

Many climate stations reported new daily record rainfall values that day including: 1.24” at Lake City, 1.28” at Jordan, 1.30” at Zumborta, 1.49” at Red Wing, 1.60” at Minnesota City, 1.73” at Owatonna, 1.95” at Rosemount, 2.39” at Faribault, 3.08” at Hastings, 4.18” at St Peter, and 4.45” at Northfield. There were also widespread reports of thunder and lightning.

With this additional moisture at least 35 climate stations now report over 3 inches of precipitation for the month so far. With 4.63 …