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Heat Settles In

Heat Settles In:

Afternoon temperatures on Thursday, June 3rd rose into the 90s F across much of Minnesota, rivaling the high temperatures set for the year so far that occurred over May 1 and 2 last month, when 20 counties reported high temperatures from 90-95°F. Temperatures on Thursday ranged from 90°F to 93°F across 26 Minnesota counties. In many areas the temperatures rose above the forecasted highs and the afternoon relative humidity bottomed out between 15 and 30 percent. Because of the high temperatures, low humidity and dry soil seven northwestern counties from Norman to Kittson County were placed in a Red Flag Warning by the National Weather Service. The heat and the Red Flag Warnings in northwestern Minnesota will likely carry over into the weekend as a number of daily all-time high temperature records may be threatened for Saturday, June 5th. Sunday will be hot as well before late day cloudiness and perhaps a few thunderstorms cool temperatures down. Friday morning (June 4th) brought record warm minimum temperatures to both MSP (73°F) and Marshall (71°F).

Perhaps more importantly, the NOAA medium range forecast models predict well above normal temperatures to dominate Minnesota and nearby states well into the third week of June. It is likely that many days may bring high temperatures in the 90s F. Last June (2020) ranked as the 9th warmest in state history, bringing 9 or 10 days of 90°F temperatures to many parts of the state. Six climate stations even saw 100°F or hotter last June. The way this June weather pattern is unfolding may bring a like amount of days, or perhaps even more. The hottest June in state history was in 1933 when many places reported 20 or more days with afternoon highs of 90°F or greater.

One other disconcerting trend seen in the forecast models is for less than normal rainfall this month. The combination of hot temperatures and persistent dry conditions will not bode well for farmers and gardeners, but at least most gardeners have the ability to water their plants.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

There is an interesting article featured from NOAA this week about the valuable information gained from the buoyed observation networks. These instrumented buoys provide data on ocean temperature and wave heights, as well as ocean acidification. They are also used for atmospheric measurements like pressure, temperature, and wind and help forecast tsunamis.

Jonathan Erdman wrote an interesting article for the Weather Channel this week highlighting which weather elements produce the most annual deaths in the USA. It is not tornadoes, floods, or hurricanes. It is heat. Excessive heat caused an average of 138 deaths per year from 1990 to 2019. More detailed statistics can be found in the article, along with safety tips for coping with the heat.

This week’s AGU-EOS Bulletin features an article about the inflated annual health care costs in the USA due to climate change and fossil fuel usage. It is estimated to cost $830 billion each year. These estimates come from expenditures associated with doctor visits, prescriptions, emergency room visits, physical therapy, allergy treatments, mental health care, and premature death. Also factored in were downstream costs like lost work hours and lost wages. The costs stem either directly or indirectly from burning fossil fuels.

MPR listener question:

Wondering what is the hottest temperature recorded in the month of June in Minnesota? Would you also know the lowest relative humidity measured during the same month?


The highest measured temperature in June for Minnesota was 110°F at Canby (Yellow Medicine County) on June 29, 1931. I do not know the absolute answer to the second question, but during Junes of 1910, 1933, 1936, and 1988 afternoon relative humidity readings between 8 and 15 percent were reported, almost like the Desert Southwest.

Twin Cities Almanac for June 4th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 75 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 55 degrees F (plus or minus 7 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for June 4th:

MSP records for this date include: highest daily maximum temperature of 96 degrees F in 1968; lowest daily maximum temperature of 56 degrees F in 2002; lowest daily minimum temperature of 38 degrees F in 1998; highest daily minimum temperature of 70 degrees F in 1934; record precipitation of 1.92 inches in 1880. No snowfall has occurred on this date.

Average dew point for May 28th is 51°F; the maximum dew point on this date is 76°F in 1925; and the minimum dew point on this date is 29 degrees F in 2009.

All-time state records for June 4th:

The state record high temperature for this date is 100 degrees F at Lamberton (Redwood County) in 1968. The state record low temperature for this date is 21 degrees F at Bigfork (Itasca County) in 1964. The state record precipitation for this date is 5.30 inches at Zumbrota (Wabasha County) in 1958. Record snowfall is 1.5 inches at Mizpah (Koochiching County) in 1935.

Past Weather Features:

One of the wettest starts to June occurred in 1944 when during the first 5 days of the month many areas of the state reported 4-5 inches of rainfall. Areas around Gull Lake and Milaca received over 4 inches of rainfall and some hail on June 4th, and Milaca ended up reporting over 15 inches of rainfall during the month.

The hottest June 4th in state history was in 1968 when over 75 communities reported afternoon high temperatures in the 90s F. The coldest spot in the state was Grand Portage on Lake Superior with an afternoon high temperature of just 70°F.

Many parts of northern Minnesota reported frost on June 4, 1985. Frosts were reported from observers in St Louis, Kanabec, Carlton, Lake, Beltrami, and Cass Counties. The afternoon high temperature at Grand Marais only reached 49°F.


Record or near record heat on Saturday and still hot on Sunday, but with increasing chances for thunderstorms later in the day. Though not record-setting, temperatures will remain well above normal all of next week with chances for scattered thunderstorms on Tuesday through Thursday.

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