Dry Mid-Summer 2008 (updated July 31, 2008)

U.S. Drought Monitor - July 29, 2008

Drought Monitor Map

Drought Monitor Legend

Abrupt changes in precipitation patterns over time are common in Minnesota. This was the case during the 2008 growing season. A stretch of very dry weather arrived immediately on the heels of an extremely wet first half of June.

For a six-week period during the last two weeks of June and into late July, many Minnesota communities received less than two inches of rainfall. This came at a time of year when rainfall rates average roughly one inch per week. Thus, rainfall deficits over the six-week dry spell topped three inches in many areas. Described another way, six-week rainfall totals were less than 50 percent of normal for the period (see maps below).

Temperatures over the six-week period were at, to slightly below, historical averages. This kept evaporative demand near seasonal norms and mitigated the situation somewhat. In 2007, late-June and early-July temperatures were well above average, amplifying evaporation and transpiration rates.

As of July 29, the U.S. Drought Monitor rated a large portion of central and southern Minnesota and some counties in northern Minnesota as D0 - Abnormally Dry (see map at right). A portion of Traverse county was placed in the D1 - Moderate Drought category.

Sector briefs:

Precipitation maps:

total rainfall: June 17 - July 28, 2008 total rainfall, departure from normal: June 17 - July 28, 2008 total rainfall, percent of normal: June 17 - July 28, 2008