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Weekly Weather Update

Weekly Weather Update:

Midweek brought some welcome general rains to Minnesota, with common amounts ranging from a quarter of an inch to three-quarters of an inch. Some areas of northern Minnesota even reported traces of snow, as temperatures plummeted for the second half of the week. On Friday morning many observers reported more snow, with many reports of 1.5 to 3 inches in northern counties and 0.1 to 1.5 inches around the Metro Area.

The measures of drought in the state remained roughly the same, with the most extreme drought conditions over portions of the Metro Counties, and some counties in southwestern Minnesota. Approximately 79 percent of the state landscape is drier than normal.

Winds picked up this week with back-to- back days bringing wind gusts over 40 mph. Many parts of the state have reported 5 days so far this month with wind gusts over 30 mph, as the windiest year in many decades continues to leave its footprint on the state. The recent winds have stripped many leaves from trees.

Nominations for the 2023 MCAP Awards:

The Minnesota Climate Adaptation Partnership Program (MCAP) founded in 2008 promotes increasing climate resilience through research, collaboration & communication. MCAP conducts webinars and statewide conferences to bring people together to share their knowledge of climate change adaptation practices and strategies. Since 2014 MCAP has also given awards to individuals and groups in recognition of their outstanding work. The awards recognize and celebrate exceptional achievements in leadership, education, research, policies, and practices that improve resilience or climate justice through the development, advancement, or implementation of climate adaptation strategies. The award nominations are considered for five categories: 

-Individual Adaptation Award
-Collaborative Adaptation Award
-Organization Adaptation Award
-Creative Climate Communication Award
-Climate Justice Leadership Award

The Minnesota Climate Adaptation Partnership Program is accepting nominations for awards until October 31. To nominate an individual, group, or organization go to the MCAP web site and fill out the nomination form.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

This week’s AGU-EOS Bulletin features an interesting article about an ancient tributary of the Nile River in Egypt which has been predominately dry in recent centuries. But research using ancient sediments shows that in the time that the Great Pyramids were built (2500-2600 BCE) the climate was much wetter and the tributary was flowing in great volume near Giza, enough to help the pyramid builders transport the great stones needed for construction.

The BBC reported this week that areas around Victoria (Australia) and Tazmania were reporting widespread flooding this week. Some climate observers were reporting over 8 inches of rain. Both flash flooding and river flooding were prevalent there, but the weather pattern was expected to dry out over the coming weekend.

The Weather Channel reported this week that Hurricane Ian’s impact has worsened the outlook for the Florida orange crop this year, which was already expected to be down year. Current estimates for the orange crop suggest the worst crop in decades, and this may be the first year that California will exceed Florida in orange juice production.

NOAA released an assessment of the climate in September for the nation. Their analysis shows that the month was the 5th warmest September in 128 years, with most of the extraordinary warmth in the western states all the way back to the Great Lakes states. September was drier than normal across roughly 70 percent of the country.

MPR listener question:

A listener wrote me to remark that the rate at which the sun retreats into the southern latitudes during October is very close to the rate at which it advances into the northern latitudes during the month of March. Does this explain why the increase in daily mean temperature during March (about 13-15°F) is roughly equal to the decrease in daily mean temperature during October (13-15°F) across the state?


Indeed, that is correct for the most part. The heat gain in terms of daily mean temperature during
March is in correspondence with the heat loss during October, just as the gain in daylight hours in March is equivalent to the lose in daylight hours during October (about 90 minutes).

But there is, however, an interesting discrepancy in the extremes of temperature observed for those months. The statewide extremes for October are a high of 98°F (October 5, 1963 at Beardsley) and a low of -16°F (October 26, 1936 at Roseau), a range of 114°F. On the other hand, the extremes for March are a high of 88°F (March 27, 1910 at Montevideo) and a low of -50°F (March 2, 1897 at Pokegama Dam), a range of 138°F. What is the explanation for this disparity in temperature extremes from seemingly symmetrical months on the calendar?

The answer is snow cover (something we shouldn't talk about until at least Halloween). Snow cover is a greater modifier of March climate in Minnesota as it is often present during the month and greatly impacts the overnight low temperatures. Conversely, snow cover in October is indeed rare across most of Minnesota, and when it occurs it is usually brief..

Twin Cities Almanac for October 14th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 59 degrees F (plus or minus 11 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 42 degrees F (plus or minus 8 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for October 14th:

MSP records for this date: highest daily maximum temperature of 86 degrees F in 1947; lowest daily maximum temperature of 40 degrees F in 1943; lowest daily minimum temperature of 24 degrees F in 1937; highest daily minimum temperature of 66 degrees F in 1968; record precipitation of 1.89 inches in 1966. Record snowfall is a trace in 1959..

Average dew point for October 14th is 41°F; the maximum dew point on this date is 70°F in 1962; and the minimum dew point on this date is 17 degrees F in 2006 .

All-time state records for October 14th:

The state record high temperature for this date is 91 degrees F at Redwood Falls (Redwood County) in 1947. The state record low temperature for this date is 8 degrees F at Beardsley (Big Stone County) in 1937. The state record precipitation for this date is 4.45 inches at Mahnomen (Mahnomen County) in 1984. Record snowfall is 4.1 inches at Argyle (Marshall County) in 1992.

Past Weather Features:

A cold, blustery day prevailed across Minnesota on October 14, 1876. There were few weather stations to report the temperatures, but morning lows were in the teens and twenties F, and daytime highs ranged from the mid-twenties to low 40s across the state. Wind chill conditions were not measured then, but winds were brisk from the northwest.

The warmest October 14th in state history was in 1947 when over half of the climate stations in Minnesota reported afternoon highs in the 80s F. It reached 80°F as far north as Virginia on the Iron Range, and 91°F at Redwood Falls. Some places reported overnight lows in the 60s F.

October 14-15 in 1992 brought an early taste of winter as a storm system brought wind, rain, and snow to many portions of Minnesota. Scores of climate stations reported from 1 to 4 inches of snow as daytime temperatures ranged from the mid 30s to mid 40s F in many areas.


Well below normal temperatures through the weekend and into early next week. A chance for a wintry mix of precipitation in northern areas on Saturday and Sunday. There will be many mornings with frost and freezing temperatures. Midweek will bring some moderation as temperatures climb to near normal. Little precipitation is seen in the forecast, except towards the end of the week there will be a chance for snow in northern sections. The next warm up to above normal temperatures is likely during the last third of the month.


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