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Preliminary Climate Summary for June of 2023

Preliminary Climate Summary for June of 2023:

June of 2023 was very warm, ranking on a statewide basis as the 4th warmest in state history, trailing only June of 2021, June of 1988, and June of 1933. The relative warmth of June historically was more pronounced in western and northern Minnesota than in eastern Minnesota. For example, Baudette reported its 2nd warmest June in history and Crookston its warmest ever, while Duluth reported the 7th warmest June in history and Rochester the 13th warmest. The Twin Cities reported its 3rd warmest June, just behind 1933 and 2021.

Most climate observers reported a mean monthly temperature that ranged from 3°F to 6°F above normal. Extreme temperature readings ranged from 24°F at Ely (St Louis County) on June 11th to 98°F at Artichoke Lake (Big Stone County) on the 4th. A large majority of climate stations reported at least one day in the 90s F, and many areas reported 7-9 such days. Within the state climate station network approximately 50 daily warm maximum temperature records were tied or broken, and approximately 100 daily warm minimum temperature records were tied for broken, including several nights when the temperature never dropped below 70°F. The years first dew point readings of 70°F were reported the last week of the month.

From a moisture viewpoint June of 2023 was tracking to be one of the driest in history until the rains of June 23-25, which were widespread and significant in many areas of the state. The statewide average rainfall of 2.50 inches ranks as the 15th driest June historically. Over 90 percent of the Minnesota climate stations reported below normal rainfall for the month, but some climate stations reported historically dry values, including:
Spring Valley (Fillmore County) 0.59”, driest June in history
Theilman (Wabasha County) 0.65”, driest June in history
MSP Airport 0.93”, 2nd driest June, behind 0.22 inches in 1988
St Cloud (Sherburne County) 0.67”, 3rd driest June
Wheaton (Traverse County) 0.76”, 3rd driest June in history
Rochester (Olmsted County) 1.34”, 5th driest June in history
Austin (Mower County) 1..01”, 3rd driest June in history

The highly variable thunderstorm rainfalls during the month brought some record daily amounts to some areas of the state. At least 12 new daily rainfall records were reported in the state climate network, including:
3.25 inches at Grand Meadow on June 3rd
2.53 inches at Bemidji on June 10th
2.46 inches at Caledonia on June 19th
2.10 inches at Floodwood on June 24th
1.83 inches at Brainerd on June 25th

With the rains of last week, the areas of Moderate (44%) and Severe Drought (5%) remained about the same this week. Crop growth and development advanced fairly rapidly during the month in the warm temperatures, and much of the crop remains in good to excellent condition. But soil moisture was depleted significantly during the month to keep crops healthy, so significant additional rains will be needed during July to keep crop condition from deteriorating.

History of July 4th Weather:

Independence Day in Minnesota has a reputation for being warm and humid most of the time. The highest Heat Index occurred in 1949 when 18 communities reported values of 110 to 115 F, while the statewide record temperature was set at Pipestone in 1936 with a reading of 107 degrees F. The last exceptionally hot July 4th was in 2012 when most areas of the state reported temperatures well into the 90s F, and seven climate stations reached 100°F or greater, including the Twin Cities with 101°F.

July 4th 1972 brought frost to northern Minnesota counties and even daytimes highs barely made the 60s F. In 1876 residents of Duluth made ice cream for the 4th using ice harvested from the harbor because it had been so cold the night before.

It rains on the 4th about every 2 years out of 5, though it has rained only six times in the last 25 in the Twin Cities area. There have been cases of heavy thunderstorm rains washing out fireworks displays, as happened at Milan in Chippewa County in 1995 when they recorded just under 10 inches of rainfall. And the most famous July 4th storm was in 1999 when a derecho windstorm devastated the Boundary Waters Canoe Area with winds of 70 to 100 mph.

As for the coming 4th of July next Tuesday, it looks like the afternoon with bring chances for thunderstorms with high temperatures in the 80s F and a few 90s F, and moderate southerly winds.

Weekly Weather Potpourri:

Speaking of hot Junes, the UK Met Office released an preliminary assessment that June of 2023 will be the hottest ever in that country going back to 1884. Temperatures as high as 90°F were measured in the United Kingdom this month, with many days in the 80s F. Many of the warmest months in UK history have occurred since 2006 and are undoubtedly linked with climate change.

NOAA scientists reported this week that the extent of winter sea ice in the Antarctic is at a record low level, following a record low level of ice observed during the Southern Hemisphere summer a few months ago. “Data archived by the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) record Antarctic sea ice extent at 4.5 million square miles (11.7 million square kilometers) as of June 27, 2023. That’s nearly a million square miles (2.6 million square kilometers) below the 1981–2010 average, and approaching a half a million square miles (1.2 million square kilometers) below the previous lowest extent for the day, observed in 2022.”

This week the staff of the Weather Underground share their thoughts about the significant weather features to watch for across the USA during the month of July. Certainly, heat and severe weather often step forward to capture the weather headlines somewhere in the USA. Peak heat with high dew points usually occurs in the second half of July in Minnesota.

MPR listener question:

With a drought in place here in central Minnesota as we enter the month of July, we were wondering what can you tell us about the long-term trend in July rainfall for Minnesota.?


Over the past 100 years there has been about a 10 percent increase in July rainfall across the state. But in the most recent three decades, 15 Julys have brought above normal rainfall and 15 have brought below normal rainfall. So, flip a coin. The NOAA outlook is favorable for a wetter than normal July across most of Minnesota next month

Twin Cities Almanac for June 30th:

The average MSP high temperature for this date is 83 degrees F (plus or minus 9 degrees F standard deviation), while the average low is 64 degrees F (plus or minus 7 degrees F standard deviation).

MSP Local Records for June 30th:

MSP records for this date: highest daily maximum temperature of 100 degrees F in 1931; lowest daily maximum temperature of 56 degrees F in 1959; lowest daily minimum temperature of 47 degrees F in 1892; highest daily minimum temperature of 82 degrees F in 1931; record precipitation of 1.56 inches in 1978. No snowfall on this date.

Average dew point for June 30th is 58°F; the maximum dew point on this date is 76°F in 1955; and the minimum dew point on this date is 36 degrees F in 1965.

All-time state records for June 30th:

The state record high temperature for this date is 109 degrees F at Canby (Yellow Medicine County) in 1931. The state record low temperature for this date is 24 degrees F at Pine River Dam (Crow Wing County) in 1925. The state record precipitation for this date is 8.76 inches at Little Falls (Morrison County) in 2020. No snowfall has been reported on this date.

Past Weather:

The transition from June to July in 1900 was a very wet one across Minnesota with persistent afternoon thunderstorms that delivered lots of rainfall. Many climate stations in central and southern Minnesota received between 2 and 4 inches of rainfall. Milaca reported over 5 inches.

June 30 of 1931 was the hottest in state history. Nearly every climate station in the state except for Grand Marais and Two Harbors reported afternoon temperatures of 90°F or greater. Climate observers in 30 counties reported a high temperature of 100°F or greater. The overnight low temperature at Winona and Canby bottomed out at a sultry 83°F.

Campers awakened to a cool morning in northern Minnesota on June 30, 1965. Frost was reported in portions of St Louis, Itasca, and Lake of the Woods Counties. Over 20 climate stations reported record low temperatures that morning.


Warmer than normal temperatures over the weekend with slight chances for afternoon thunderstorms, mostly in the southern part of the state. Continued warmer than normal temperatures next week with increasing chances for showers and thunderstorms on Monday night and Tuesday (July 4th). Temperatures will cool to a bit below normal by Thursday of next week..

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