Hot and Dry Start of October 2011

Autumn takes a break as August-like weather returns for the first week of October.

From October 2-9, many places in Minnesota saw at or near record high temperatures. The Twin Cities saw eight straight days of 80 degrees or more, which tied the record of eight straight days set back in 1953. The warmest temperature so far for the Twin Cities this October was 88 degrees on the 5th, setting a record high for that day, breaking the old record of 87 that was set in 1879. One of the highest temperatures found so far for the State for this heat wave is 92 degrees at Minneota on the 5th.

Not only has it been hot, but the atmosphere has been very dry. The Twin Cities International Airport has seen only .36 inches of rain for the five week period ending on October 7. Relative humidity values have also been very low fromt he 4th to the 6th with some readings below 20% in southwest Minnesota, very similar to another dry day on October 19, 2000.

A large area of high pressure to the east of Minnesota across was responsible for the warm temperatures, winds around this high have been from the south, continuing to feed warm air northward. A strong Low pressure system over the Dakotas caused winds to be gusty on October 7 with wind gusts as high as 37mph in the Twin Cities and wind gusts up to 52mph at Hallock. Mark Seeley's WeatherTalk has more details about the warm October.