HydroClim Minnesota - June 2007
A monthly electronic newsletter summarizing Minnesota climate conditions and the resulting impact on water resources.
Distributed on the Wednesday following the first Monday of each month.
State Climatology Office - DNR Waters
WHAT HAPPENED IN MAY
- May 2007 precipitation totals were variable across
Minnesota. Many west central, northwest, and north central Minnesota
locations reported above-average precipitation for the month. Monthly
precipitation was below average in central Minnesota counties and in some
areas of southwestern Minnesota. For those areas of northern Minnesota where
precipitation did not exceed normal, the May rains were still ample enough
to ease wildfire concerns and improve drought conditions somewhat. In west
central Minnesota, it was the fourth consecutive month of above normal
- monthly mean temperatures for May 2007 were
somewhat warm across all of Minnesota. Temperatures were generally two to
four degrees above the historical average. Extreme values for May ranged
from 95 degrees at Morris (Stevens County) on the 13th, to 25 degrees at
Embarrass (St. Louis County) on the 17th. Frost was reported on the morning
of May 17 in northern Minnesota and in southeastern Minnesota, but little
crop damage was reported.
(see: http://climate.umn.edu/cawap/monsum/monsum.asp )
- early May brought weather conditions that were highly conducive to an
explosive wildfire situation. The rapid spread of the Ham Lake fire in Cook
County was the result of an alignment of these unfortunate conditions. As
the month began, the area was deemed to be in a "Severe" to "Extreme"
drought. Light and heavy fuels were very dry and spring green-up was just
underway. Daytime temperatures on May 8 and 9 reached well into the 80's
while the relative humidity was below 30 percent. In addition, strong winds
of variable direction impacted the fire-fighting effort.
WHERE WE STAND NOW
- growing season precipitation totals to date (April
1 through early June) are above average across much of western and northern
Minnesota. Portions of west central Minnesota have received over 200% of
normal precipitation for the April 1 through June 5 time period. If the
period of investigation is extended back to February 1, precipitation totals
for the four-month interval topped historical averages by more than eight
inches in portions of Big Stone, Traverse, Grant, Wilken, Ottertail, and
Clay counties. Conversely, some southeastern Minnesota counties have
received below-normal rainfall thus far this growing season.
- the U. S. Drought Monitor released on May 31 indicates that portions
of north central and northeastern Minnesota remain in a serious drought
situation. These areas are deemed to be undergoing "Severe" to "Extreme"
drought. Many other northern Minnesota counties are depicted in the
"Moderate Drought" or "Abnormally Dry" categories. Due to wet weather in the
late-winter, and during the spring, the geographic extent of the most
intense drought areas has diminished. The NDMC index is a blend of science
and subjectivity where intensity categories are based on several
- the U.S. Geological Survey reports that stream discharge values are
at, or near, all-time highs for the date across much of the upper Red River
basin. Moderate to major flooding is underway or anticipated along the upper
reaches of the Red River. Stream discharge values in the upper Minnesota
River basin, as well as some central Minnesota watersheds, are also quite
high. River levels along the International border remain low.
- water levels on Lake Superior, as well as on some north central and
northeastern Minnesota lakes, remain low.
- the Minnesota Agricultural Statistics Service reports that as of June
1, the state's topsoil moisture was 1% very short, 12% short, 76% adequate,
and 11% surplus. A large fraction of Minnesota's crops are reported in good
to excellent condition.
- the potential for wildfires is rated by DNR Forestry as "low" in all
- the June precipitation outlook from the Climate
Prediction Center indicates no significant tendencies away from
climatological probabilities across Minnesota, with the exception of
Minnesota's Arrowhead region. In far northeastern Minnesota, the 30-day
precipitation outlook tilts towards above-normal values. June is
historically the wettest month of the year with precipitation normals
ranging from three and one half inches in western Minnesota, to over four
inches and one half inches in many central and eastern Minnesota counties.
The historical probability of measurable precipitation for any given day in
June ranges from 33 percent in the northwest to near 40 percent in eastern
- the June temperature outlook indicates no significant tendencies away
from climatological probabilities across Minnesota. Normal June high
temperatures are in the low to mid 70's early in the month, rising to around
80 by month's end. Normal June low temperatures are in the low 50's to start
the month, and rise to around 60 as the month ends.
- the 90-day precipitation outlook for June through August indicates no
significant tendencies away from climatological probabilities across
Minnesota. The June through August temperature projection also indicates no
significant tendencies away from climatological probabilities.
- the National Weather Service produces long-range probabilistic river
stage and discharge outlooks for the Red River, Minnesota River, and
Mississippi River basins. These products are part of the National Weather
Service's Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS).
NOTES FROM THE AUTHOR
NOTES FROM AROUND THE STATE
UPCOMING DATES OF NOTE
- June 21: National Weather Service releases 30/90 day temperature and precipitation outlooks
WEB SITES FEATURED IN THIS EDITION
http://climate.umn.edu - Minnesota
Climatology Working Group, Minnesota DNR Waters and University of Minnesota
Department of Soil, Water, and Climate
http://www.drought.unl.edu - National
Drought Mitigation Center
- U.S. Geological Survey
- Minnesota DNR Waters
Detroit District, US Army Corps of Engineers
http://www.lwcb.ca/ - Lake of the Woods
http://www.nass.usda.gov - USDA,
National Agricultural Statistics Service
- Minnesota DNR Forestry
Climate Prediction Center, National Weather Service
North Central River Forecast Center - Chanhassen, National Weather Service
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