Drought 2009 (updated October 1, 2009)


Drought Monitor Map Drought Monitor Map - Previous Week Drought Monitor Legend
U.S. Drought Monitor
Sept. 29, 2009 (released Oct. 1)
Previous Week

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

2009 growing season dry spell:
With a very few exceptions, 2009 growing season precipitation has been well short of historical averages across Minnesota. As a result, many Minnesota counties are categorized as being Abnormally Dry or undergoing Moderate to Severe drought (map at right). Precipitation totals have been roughly 50% to 75% of normal since April 1, falling short of average by five or more inches (maps below).

2008-2009 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 at bottom of page). Counties in this area are categorized as experiencing Severe to Extreme drought by the U.S. Drought Monitor (map at right).

Recent developments:

total rainfall: September 22, 2009 - September 28, 2009

Weekly rainfall totals through Monday morning, September 28 (map at right) ranged from one and one-half inches to three inches over portions of southwest Minnesota. Much of the southern one half of the state received at least one-half inch of rain. Heavier rains were also reported along the Canadian border. Elsewhere in northern Minnesota, rainfall totals were generally less than one-third inch. Rainfall totals for September are short of historical averages by one to three inches over much of eastern Minnesota.

Daily radar-based precipitation estimates
Daily precipitation point values

Temperatures for the fourth week of September were once again well above normal across Minnesota. September 2009 will go into the record books as one of Minnesota's warmest Septembers ever. Warm temperatures enhance evaporation and transpiration rates, worsening the drought situation.

Sector briefs:

2009 growing season precipitation deficit maps:

total rainfall departure: April 1, 2009 - September 28, 2009 total rainfall percent of normal: April 1, 2009 - September 28, 2009 total rainfall rank: April 1, 2008 - September 28, 2009

2008-2009 long-term precipitation deficit map:

total rainfall departure: June 1, 2008 - September 28, 2009

Other Information: