Drought 2009 (updated August 27, 2009)


Drought Monitor Map Drought Monitor Map - Previous Week Drought Monitor Legend
U.S. Drought Monitor
August 25, 2009 (released Aug. 27)
Previous Week

Minnesota's present drought conditions are the result of two spells of dry weather.

Long-term dry spell:
In east central Minnesota, a long-term episode of dryness began in mid-June of 2008 and continues to the present. Long-term precipitation deficits in these areas range from eight to fourteen inches (map below). Counties in this area are categorized as experiencing Moderate to Severe drought by the U.S. Drought Monitor (map at right).

2009 growing season dry spell:
With a few dramatic exceptions, 2009 growing season precipitation has been well short of historical averages nearly everywhere in Minnesota. Some Minnesota counties are categorized as being Abnormally Dry or undergoing Moderate Drought (map at right). Precipitation totals have been roughly 50% to 75% of normal since April 1, falling short of average by four to six inches (maps below).

Recent developments:

total rainfall: August 18, 2009 - August 24, 2009

Weekly rainfall totals through Monday morning, August 24 (map at right), exceeded one inch across most of the southeastern two-thirds of Minnesota. Heavy rains of two or more inches fell last week on portions of west central Minnesota. Very heavy rain, topping four inches in some cases, fell last week in east central Minnesota. In some of Minnesota's most drought-stricken landscapes, last week's rains, along with ample rain earlier in August, have cut away at precipitation deficits built up over the course of many months. The newest release of the U.S. Drought Monitor depicts categorical improvements in many areas compared with previous week.

Temperatures for the week were below normal, a recurring theme throughout the 2009 growing season.

Daily precipitation point values

Sector briefs:

Long-term precipitation deficit map:

total rainfall departure: June 1, 2008 - August 24, 2009

2009 growing season precipitation deficit maps:

total rainfall departure: April 1, 2009 - August 24, 2009 total rainfall percent of normal: April 1, 2009 - August 24, 2009 total rainfall rank: April 1, 2008 - August 24, 2009

Other Information: