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Spotty Rains Continue in MN, Extreme Heat Elsewhere

Spotty Rains Continue in MN:

This week brought some significant thunderstorms to portions of Minnesota, notably the northwest and the southern tier of counties near the Iowa border. Some northwestern observers reported a half inch or over an inch of rain, much needed given the heat and rapid growth of crops earlier in the month. Across southern counties rainfall of 1 inch to 1.50 inches was prevalent. Most other observers are reporting total monthly rainfall that falls short of normal. Only about 20 percent of the climate stations are reporting normal or greater than normal rainfall this month. Portions of Kittson, Marshall, Roseau, Lake of the Woods, Beltrami, and Koochiching Counties remain in moderate drought.

Hot, record-setting summer solstice week SW USA:

The highest temperature in Minnesota so far in the month of June is 97 degrees F at Rosemount and Waseca on the 10th. That sounds quite hot for most of us, but what if that temperature was your overnight low? That was exactly the case at Death Valley, CA on June 20th (the summer solstice), when after a record-setting high of 127 degrees F, the temperature only "cooled down" to a minimum of 97 degrees F overnight. Wow! How do you survive in such heat.

Many western parts of the USA reported record-setting temperatures earlier this week, on the summer solstice, including the following:
June 20th: 127°F at Death Valley, CA; 125°F at Needles, CA; 122°F at Palm Springs; 119°F at Phoenix, AZ; 116°F at Tucson, AZ; 120°F at Yuma, AZ; 117°F at Las Vegas, NV; 104°F at Reno, NV; 120°F at Laughlin, NV; 99°F at Denver, CO; and 97°F at Boulder, CO.

Needless to say, the National Weather Service has been issuing Heat Advisories and Excessive Heat Warnings in all of those states over several days this week.

At Death Valley, CA so far this month, high temperatures have reached or exceeded 120°F on six days, while overnight lows have remained in the 90s F on five days as well, as high as 99°F on the 22nd.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

Portions of Europe too have been reporting a Heat Wave this week, with temperatures in the mid to upper 90s F. West London in the UK reported a temperature of 93 degrees F, highest June temperature there since 1976, while Milan in northern Italy reported a high of 102 degrees F this week. Portions of Spain and Portugal were reporting record high temperatures as well.

NOAA staff also reported this week that the month of May 2017 was the third warmest of record (back to 1880) globally, with regions of northwest Africa, central and eastern Asia, and polar Canada showing very large positive temperature deviations. Only 2015 and 2016 produced a warmer month of May.

Provoked by so many weather headlines focused on Heat this week, NOAA's Rebecca Lindsey and Michon Scott feature an article about the summers hottest and coldest solstice days across the nation. You can compare various regions of the country and see how much the temperatures have varied there.

The "cloud of the month" at the Cloud Appreciation Society web site is a wonderful photo of a cap cloud, surrounding the peak of the Mayon Volcano in the Philippines. It is a very unique cloud form, one not seen here in the Midwest, so you might want to take a look at it.

The St Anthony Park Garden Tour is scheduled for this Saturday (June 24) in St Paul, from 10am to 4pm. This is always well attended and a highlight for Twin Cities gardeners. There will also be activities and information related to phenology and climate change at this year's event. Proceeds from the garden tour provide for scholarships for plant science students at the University of Minnesota.

Also the COMPAS Third Annual Arts and Crafts Fair will take place from 3pm to 7pm at the Upper Cut Gym in Minneapolis on Saturday, June 24. The Arts & Crafts art and music festival will feature tastings from Minnesota craft breweries & distilleries, alongside COMPAS artists doing what they do best—inspiring creativity in all Minnesotans (music among others). Weather should be quite comfortable.

MPR listener question:

I heard Cathy Wurzer report that it was just 34 degrees F at Embarrass on June 21st this week. Was that a record low for them? Also, how cold has it ever been in Minnesota during the month of June?


You are correct in guessing that 34 degrees F was a record at Embarrass for June 21st, breaking the record of 36 degrees F on that date back in 2007. But as cold as that sounds it is far from the record coldest readings in Minnesota for the month of June. On June 21, 1992 it was just 25 degrees F at Brimson, MN (St Louis County), and even more astounding on June 1, 1964 it was just 15 degrees F at Bigfork, MN (Itasca County).

Twin Cities Almanac for June 23rd:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 81 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 61 degrees F (plus or minus 6 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for June 23rd:

MSP records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 99 degrees F in 1922 and 1937; lowest daily maximum temperature of 63 degrees F in 1957, 1969, and 2011; lowest daily minimum temperature of 44 degrees F in 1972; highest daily minimum temperature of 80 F in 2005; record precipitation of 2.52 inches in 1873. No snowfall has occurred on this date.

Average dew point for June 23rd 21st is 56°F; the maximum dew point on this date is 75°F in 2002; and the minimum dew point on this date is 30°F in 1972.

All-time state records for June 23rd:

The all-time state high temperature for today's date is 104 degrees F at Springfield (Brown County) in 1937; the all-time state low for today's date is 27 degrees F at Sandy Lake Dam (Aitkin County) in 1917. The all-time state record precipitation for this date is 5.47 inches at Read's Landing (Wabasha County) in 1940. No snow has fallen on this date.

Past Weather Features:

June 23, 1902 was the coldest in state history, bringing a summer frost to many parts of the state. Portions of Kittson, Pine, St Louis, and Itasca Counties reported morning low temperatures below 32 degrees F, and ground frost was reported as far south as Fairmont, MN.

By far the warmest June 23rd in state history was in 1937. Over half of the climate stations reported afternoon high temperatures in the 90s F, while 10 western and southern communities

exceeded 100 degrees F. It was uncomfortable into the night as well, as many nighttime readings remained in the 70s F.

This week in 2002 was extremely wet with a series of thunderstorms passing across the state that deposited over a month's worth of rainfall in many areas. Many observers across northern Minnesota reported 5 to 7 inches of rainfall, while road washouts and flooding streams and rivers were reported in Norman, Becker, Mahnomen, Clearwater, and Itasca Counties. Across central and southeastern Minnesota 4-5 inches of rain fell.


Cooler than normal temperatures for Minnesota over Saturday through Monday, with chances for showers mostly in the northern counties over the weekend. Monday and Tuesday will be mostly sunny with continued cooler than normal temperatures, then a warm-up with increasing chances for showers by next Wednesday and Thursday.

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