Skip to main content


Showing posts from March, 2024

Preliminary Climate Summary for March

Preliminary Climate Summary for March: What a month! Completely different weather patterns prevailed for the first half versus the second half of the month. Warm and dry the first half, followed by cool and wet the second half. Overall, most climate stations will report a mean monthly temperature that ranges from 2°F to 5°F above normal. Extremes for the month were 78°F at Theilman (Wabasha County) on the 4th to -20°F at Baudette (Lake of the Woods County) on March 1st (the coldest day of the month). During the first half of the month temperatures average 10°F to 14°F above normal, while 196 daily maximum temperature records were set or tied, along with 34 warm daily minimum temperature records within the state climate network. Many climate stations reported daytime highs from the upper 50s to low 70s F and there were reports of many ice-out dates on area lakes. Conversely, during the second half of March temperatures averaged 5°F to 8°F colder than normal, though no new daily col

March delivers two distinct patterns of weather

March delivers two distinct patterns of weather: With a clear and evident change in the weather expected to dominate the second half of March, we will historically describe this month having two distinct and opposite weather patterns. Through the first 16 days, warm and dry, with temperatures averaging from 12°F to 14°F above normal around the state. On a statewide basis this marks the 2nd warmest first half of March in history, trailing only 2016 by half a degree. In addition, the first half of March was exceptionally dry, with many climate observers reporting zero precipitation. The statewide average precipitation was only 0.08 inches, marking the 2nd driest first half of March in history (first half of March only delivered 0.02 inches of precipitation statewide in 1910). Conversely the second half of this March will clearly be wetter (snowy) and cooler than normal. Since the 16th many northern climate stations have reported morning low temperatures in the single digits (Baudet

Warm temperatures continue, drought worsens

Warm temperatures continue, drought worsens: Since last Friday, March 8th, fifteen more record daily high temperature records have been set in the Minnesota climate station network. Most of these occurred over March 10 and 11. Some of these included 75°F at Milan (Chippewa County), 74°F at Rochester (Olmsted County), and 73°F at Redwood Falls (Redwood County). The Twin Cities also set a record high on March 11 with a reading of 68°F. Through the first half of March, there have been 115 record high daily temperature records set or tied in the state. Average temperatures for the month so far are running 11°F to 15°F above normal. Even with some cooler than normal temperature expected over the next 10 days, March is highly likely to end up as another warmer than normal month. An interesting note about drought: By the end of a record-setting wet month of December, 2023 the area of Minnesota designated to be in Moderate Drought or worse was about 40 percent, but so far the first few

March Warmth

March Warmth: The biggest weather headline this week occurred when March 3rd (Sunday) brought record-setting high temperatures to at least 60 Minnesota communities. Many observers reported afternoon highs in the 60s and 70s F. Some of the records included: 78°F at Theilman (Wabasha County) new statewide record for the date 75°F at Wells (Faribault County), Waseca (Waseca County), Austin (Mower County), and Hastings Dam (Dakota County) 74°F at MSP, Jordan (Scott County), Albert Lea (Freeborn County), Zumbrota (Goodhue County) 73°F at Caledonia (Houston County), Winnebago (Faribault County), Preston (Fillmore County) 72°F at Rochester, Grand Meadow (Mower County), Dodge Center (Dodge County) 71°F at Fairmont (Martin County), La Crescent (Winona County) 70°F at St Cloud and Elk River (Sherburne County) 65°F at Lamberton (Redwood County) These were the warmest temperatures ever for so early in March. Following the record warmth, very dry air arrived on Tuesday, March 5th as afternoon dew

Climate Summary for February

Climate Summary for February: A remarkable warm February this year brought only 2-3 days with colder than normal temperatures. The vast majority of days brought warmer than normal temperatures and on some days record-setting temperatures. Within the state climate station network, there were 221 daily high maximum temperature records set or tied, including many days with highs in the 50s and 60s F. A few stations even hit the 70°F mark. In addition to setting so many high daily maximum records, a number of days brought record-setting warm nights, with 208 daily warm minimum temperature records set or tied during the month. Contrary to our national reputation, Minnesota reported the coldest temperature in the 48 contiguous states only once during February, and that was on the last day of the month, February 29th with -22°F reported from International Falls. Overall, most Minnesota climate stations reported a mean monthly temperature that was from 12°F to 14°F above normal. This is