Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2018

Precipitation for 2018: Yet, another wet year for Minnesota

Precipitation for 2018: Yet, another wet year for Minnesota: As we wrap up October we already know it has been a wetter than normal month. October is the 5th month of the year so far that has delivered above normal precipitation. For the first ten months of 2018 only the counties of northwestern Minnesota have been marginally drier than normal. The rest of the state has seen a precipitation surplus, and for some southern counties the precipitation surplus has been record setting. Many climate stations in those counties have reported total precipitation through the first ten months that is over 13 inches above normal. A sample of precipitation for 2018 so far shows: Ada (Norman County) in the Red River Valley is just 20 inches, one of the few drier than normal spots in the state (2 inches less than average); both Caledonia (Houston County) and Harmony (Fillmore County) have reported nearly 53 inches (about 21 inches above normal), already ranking as the wettest year in their res

Wide swings in temperature

Wide swings in temperature: This time of year the combination of clear skies, bright sun, and strong air mass advection (from either the north or south) can cause some very dramatic and large swings in temperature. That’s is what we experienced back on October 3-4 when many parts of the state saw afternoon temperatures in the 70s and 80s F drop overnight into the 20s and 30s F. The complete reversal of that pattern took place this Thursday, October 18th as morning lows in the 30s F were followed by bright sun, and mild southwest winds which caused temperatures to rise into the 70s F. Here are some temperature changes reported on October 18th: MSP from a morning low of 33 degrees F to an afternoon high of 71 degrees F Hallock from a morning low of 36 degrees F to an afternoon high of 75 degrees F Baudette from a morning low of 30 degrees F to an afternoon high of 71 degrees F Roseau from a morning low of 30 degrees F to an afternoon high of 72 degrees F Alexandria from a morning lo

October behaving like November

October behaving like November: So far this month most of Minnesota’s climate observers report a monthly mean temperature that is from 5 to 10 degrees F colder than normal. Widespread frosts occurred on October 5-6 and again over October 11-12. Some climate stations set new low daytime maximum temperature records on those dates. At MSP the maximum temperature of 39 degrees F on October 11th tied for the coldest in history, matching that of 1959. In fact on the 11th a number of climate stations reported record cold daytime maximum temperatures in the 30s F. Also many climate stations reported their lowest Wind Chill readings of the fall season so far, with values ranging from the single digits to teens F on October 11th. Persistent cloudiness and rain have prevailed and brought about an early onset of Seasonal Affective Disorder for some people. Most days have seen rain, or complete cloud cover prevail. Rochester and several other locations have reported at least a trace of ra

Wet, cool, and cloudy start to October

Wet, cool, and cloudy start to October: The month of October has begun with plenty of moisture, measured in terms of rainfall, cloudiness, humidity, and dew points. Cloudiness has been persistent across much of the state just as it was in the beginning of October 2005. Most days have had complete or near-complete cloud cover, with relative humidity ranging from 70 to 95 percent. The majority of climate stations in the state have reported rainfall on at least one day and for some on three days so far in October, with many places already seeing a total of over 1 inch (2 to 2.50 inches is the range of normal total precipitation for the month of October in Minnesota). A strong cold front passage affected the state on Wednesday, October 3rd. The dew point in the Twin Cities hit a remarkable 70°F on that day, setting a record high for the date, and matching only three other years in Twin Cities’ history when the dew point has it 70 degrees F in October, those years being 1962, 2