BWCA Drought conditions in the US (map) Boundary Waters Listening Point - General Discussion
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04/13/2012 07:35AM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
Not looking good, esp on the Gunflint. (map from USA Today).

Mocha, can you do a rain dance up there?

 
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Grandma L
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04/13/2012 11:29AM  
Thanks for the post - It is raining as I type - there is hope
 
tumblehome
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04/13/2012 11:57AM  
Rain forecast for tonight and snow on Monday. It is dry but not nearly as dry as it could be or has been in years past. Northern MN has been getting rain every few days.

-T
 
RaisedByBears99
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04/13/2012 12:24PM  
quote tumblehome: "Rain forecast for tonight and snow on Monday. It is dry but not nearly as dry as it could be or has been in years past. Northern MN has been getting rain every few days.


-T"


But not much rain. Checked the ground. In spite of the rain, the earth is dry.
 
mocha
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04/13/2012 12:27PM  
quote tumblehome: "Rain forecast for tonight and snow on Monday. It is dry but not nearly as dry as it could be or has been in years past. Northern MN has been getting rain every few days.


-T"

"northern MN" is a broad area.... where i live in northern MN we have not had rain for a week or more
 
Chilly
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04/13/2012 12:40PM  
 
gsfisher13
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04/13/2012 03:31PM  
quote Chilly: " fast forward to 4 min and 20 sec "

Get off the water and out of the canoe before 5 minutes 9 seconds :)
 
wildernessfan2
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04/13/2012 08:13PM  
More rain is on the way and in fact tomorrow am - Sunday am we have a serious threat of servere weather to the south and it moves towards Wisconsin Sunday/night. Be careful out there. High threat area so hunker down if storms approach.
 
tumblehome
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04/13/2012 09:26PM  
Raining in northern MN tonight and more for Sun and Monday.
 
mocha
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04/14/2012 11:44AM  
it did rain some overnight at my house, not enough to wash any dirt off my truck.

i'd like to see a map that shows rain amounts in various areas of northern MN... it can be raining at my house and sunny 5 miles from here.
 
04/14/2012 12:17PM  
We are sending our extra rain your way, as you see the white area is not suffering....since Oct. 1 we have had 58.69 inches of rain....since Jan. 1 39.50 inches
fishguts
 
whitewolf1
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04/15/2012 06:18AM  
well the drought is about over for Ia. One very impressive storm has left widespread 2-6" of rainfall. most occurred in less then 2 hrs. Des Moines saw the 2nd wettest day in april (going back to 1878). at 3.43"
here is a link to ia statewide precip for the event


http://radar.weather.gov/radar.php?rid=dmx&product=NTP&overlay=11101111&loop=no
 
marsonite
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04/15/2012 06:36AM  
quote mocha: "it did rain some overnight at my house, not enough to wash any dirt off my truck.


i'd like to see a map that shows rain amounts in various areas of northern MN... it can be raining at my house and sunny 5 miles from here."


Try this. Note you can change the time frame in the lower left corner. Precipitation
 
mocha
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04/15/2012 06:57AM  
snow!

we'd be just as happy with rain, but i guess we'll accept snow.
 
04/15/2012 07:03AM  
I'd take any precipitation a this point.

When the dog runs across the yard and dust flies, it's dry!
 
Mort
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04/15/2012 07:24AM  
It is soooooooo dry.
How dry is it?

Ans.: It is so dry that cows are giving powdered milk!

It’s so dry the government has announced a water pistol buy back scheme.
It’s so dry, crooks are siphoning off radiators instead of gas tanks.
It’s so dry, they’re encouraging people to pee in the pool.
It’s so dry, the the dogs are marking their territory with chalk lines.
It’s so dry they’ve had to close two lanes at the swimming pool.
 
ZaraSp00k
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04/15/2012 07:26AM  
looks like the drought in Canada includes Woodland Caribo and the southern portion of Wabakimi
North America map

anybody got a better map showing Canada?
 
10/28/2021 06:37AM  
So...i dug up this old thread because I didn't want to create a new post. I've been following the drought monitor to see how the north country is recovering as we head towards winter.

Here's the latest map .

Compare this one to the map posted above by OneMatch in 2012. What a difference!
 
billconner
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10/29/2021 06:22PM  
Beyond my understanding but I this part of the country - Adirondacks - precipitation seems to be well above average.
 
11/19/2021 07:36AM  
I wonder if this will be the last drought monitor of the season? It's dated Nov. 16th.

Most if not all of the "red" or extreme drought category are now gone except for -- the arrowhead (boundary waters) area in the state.

I'm hoping for a lot of snow up north this winter.
 
11/19/2021 10:03AM  
HighnDry: "I wonder if this will be the last drought monitor of the season? It's dated Nov. 16th.
"


FYI, drought monitoring and the US drought monitor maps happen all year. They are produced every Tuesday and go out to the public every Thursday. Once things get locked up by the freeze they do not change much during the winter in Minnesota.
 
12/09/2021 08:32PM  
This one is looking better but there is still red in the BWCA (although it's gradually shrinking). The snow up there has to help.

Drought Map
 
12/13/2021 09:43PM  
HighnDry: "This one is looking better but there is still red in the BWCA (although it's gradually shrinking). The snow up there has to help.


Drought Map "


Thanks for putting this up. I'm amazed that the absolute worst section is the BW itself and nowhere else. I wonder how that is possible.
 
12/14/2021 09:37AM  
OneMatch: "HighnDry: "This one is looking better but there is still red in the BWCA (although it's gradually shrinking). The snow up there has to help.



Drought Map "



Thanks for putting this up. I'm amazed that the absolute worst section is the BW itself and nowhere else. I wonder how that is possible.
"

Canada/Ontario has the area north of the border and the Q listed as D3 Extreme Drought as of November.

Canada Drought Monitor
 
12/15/2021 05:25PM  
That's a lot of red north of the border.
 
12/17/2021 07:27AM  
It looks like as though the soil moisture levels are locked in for the winter, as Linden referenced above. Hopefully the snow will pile up in the north country this winter with a slow melt off in the spring!
 
02/04/2022 06:58AM  
I haven't checked this monitor in a while, but this looks like what's "locked in" for the winter:

US Drought Monitor

At least the dark reds have disappeared from the map. It's still very dry up north and throughout 3/4 of the state of MN. I'm hoping for more snow, at least up in the Arrowhead.
 
cyclones30
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02/04/2022 12:13PM  
Yeah it doesn't really matter how much it snows in the deep freeze if it all melts and runs off before the ground thaws.

So winter time drought monitor maps are.....sub-par at best. I'll just wait till spring starts to arrive and see how it's going then
 
02/26/2022 08:58AM  


I'm not sure if this map will show up in the gif format, but it's from the state Climatology Office/MN DNR. There's some decent snow depth up north. Let's hope for a slow melt this spring.
 
02/26/2022 09:04AM  
This is the latest drought monitor map. There's been a small decrease across the board in drought categories since the previous week. It's not much but it's something.
 
02/26/2022 02:01PM  
HighnDry: " This is the latest drought monitor map. There's been a small decrease across the board in drought categories since the previous week. It's not much but it's something."

Dang, it's so hard to believe that the arrowhead region is still moderate to severe considering all the snow I've heard has fallen up there.
 
KawnipiKid
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02/26/2022 04:06PM  

We were on the North Shore 2/14-19 but not very far inland from the big lake. Skiing a few miles up Sawbill Trail, the snow was thigh deep in undrifted spot, 3+ feet. The same distance inland from Grand Marais on the Gunflint seemed to be more like 2 feet deep. Highly unscientific. More snow was falling during the week. Let's hope for steadily improving drought conditions as spring comes.
 
03/03/2022 08:47AM  


There are small decreases again in the three drought categories left on the map for this week. The "no-drought" white area of the map is growing west-east also. It will be interesting to see how much of the drought-afflicted areas shrink as paddling season approaches.
 
03/03/2022 10:08AM  
OneMatch: "

Dang, it's so hard to believe that the arrowhead region is still moderate to severe considering all the snow I've heard has fallen up there."


To quote my post from 11/19/21.

"Once things get locked up by the freeze they do not change much during the winter in Minnesota."
 
03/03/2022 10:15AM  
One thing though is the frost depth can be less. But it also doesn’t thaw as fast either. I would think many places like swamps and pot holes can retain some of the moisture. So this could be encouraging to see all this snow. It should at least help lake and waterway levels.
 
03/03/2022 10:21AM  
"Differentiating Drought
There’s not just one type of drought. The three key types are:

Meteorological: less precipitation than normal
Hydrological: how lack of precipitation affects streams, lakes, snowpack, and groundwater
Agricultural: how lack of precipitation impacts crops and livestock"


The making of a drought map from above
 
cyclones30
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03/03/2022 12:34PM  
Drought maps in winter mean almost nothing. It could snow 1 foot or 10 feet on frozen ground. If it all melts off before the ground thaws then it's contributed nothing to the dry soils.
 
missmolly
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03/03/2022 12:36PM  
I checked the map this morning. It's dreadfully dry in the West.
 
w_w_w_31
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03/07/2022 11:39AM  
I am in the West, Grand Junction CO to be exact. It is creepy dry out here. It is the worst drought in 1200 years. Phoenix lost a significant amount of their water from the Colorado River on January 1 this year, and it is looking like they are going to be losing more. Yet, people are moving to the SW in droves. I do not think that is a smart move, at all. Climate change is real, like it or not. We all have to accept it and work within a new reality. Just like covid, we are not going back to "how it was" anytime soon, if at all ever.

dave

 
03/07/2022 12:24PM  
w_w_w_31: "I am in the West, Grand Junction CO to be exact. It is creepy dry out here. It is the worst drought in 1200 years. Phoenix lost a significant amount of their water from the Colorado River on January 1 this year, and it is looking like they are going to be losing more. Yet, people are moving to the SW in droves. I do not think that is a smart move, at all. Climate change is real, like it or not. We all have to accept it and work within a new reality. Just like covid, we are not going back to "how it was" anytime soon, if at all ever.


dave


"


Don't know if you mean exactly the Grand Junction area- but Grand Junction area has seen a very wet winter. Wettest DEC on record and top 15 wettest SEP-FEB on record. Maybe you meant a differnt area?? Even so- the West Mtns are no where near "1200" year drought levels. Where they get that from - other than true observational data- is beyond me. True climate observed (records) only go back 120 years or so in the area you describe. 1200 years is a DEEP stretch. Just my .02 as a professional in the weather/climate field for 25 years.



 
03/07/2022 12:29PM  
w_w_w_31: "I am in the West, Grand Junction CO to be exact. It is creepy dry out here. It is the worst drought in 1200 years. Phoenix lost a significant amount of their water from the Colorado River on January 1 this year, and it is looking like they are going to be losing more. Yet, people are moving to the SW in droves. I do not think that is a smart move, at all. Climate change is real, like it or not. We all have to accept it and work within a new reality. Just like covid, we are not going back to "how it was" anytime soon, if at all ever.


dave


"
The population growth in the southwest to me is unsustainable with so little water, underground or surface. In biological terms were an over capacity for the habitat.
 
03/07/2022 12:35PM  
If you want the least amounts - here they are for Grand Junction-
1200 years? I digress as is not even top 50% in the recorded history. (120-130 years)
My point of this and previous posts is check your data from what the media portrays.



 
missmolly
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03/07/2022 03:05PM  
Meh.
 
03/10/2022 07:51AM  
There's a pretty significant decrease in severe and moderate drought with this map. The darker brown colors are slowly shrinking up in the north country, particularly the bwca.

Here's the map.



Link is here.
 
03/17/2022 08:40PM  
There is a little less moderate (light brown) drought on this map. Not much change from last week. Link.
 
03/17/2022 09:43PM  
I read somewhere that 61% of the lower 48 is in some form of drought.
 
outsidethebox
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03/18/2022 07:44AM  
Despite the map showing us in a "no drought" area it is bone dry here in South Central Kansas. It rained and snowed a bit over night but we have not had any meaningful precipitation since October.
 
03/18/2022 01:29PM  
Big Bend Texas area was as dry as I've ever seen it. The map currently shows it as better than it was on the first map, but I know a lot of the Cottonwoods are not making it, and there were very few flowers. I know it's a little early, but still, only a few of the places had water.
 
Minnesotian
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03/18/2022 02:22PM  
WhiteWolf: "w_w_w_31: "I am in the West, Grand Junction CO to be exact. It is creepy dry out here. It is the worst drought in 1200 years.
dave

"


Don't know if you mean exactly the Grand Junction area- but Grand Junction area has seen a very wet winter. Wettest DEC on record and top 15 wettest SEP-FEB on record. Maybe you meant a differnt area?? Even so- the West Mtns are no where near "1200" year drought levels. Where they get that from - other than true observational data- is beyond me. True climate observed (records) only go back 120 years or so in the area you describe. 1200 years is a DEEP stretch. Just my .02 as a professional in the weather/climate field for 25 years.
"


The 1200 years is in reference to the multiyear drought the west has been going though since the year 2000. The study come from the journal Nature Climate Change and the study "Rapid intensification of the emerging southwestern North American megadrought in 2020–2021.pdf"

To quote from the article:
" The reconstructed megadroughts and the current event were not exclusively dry across time or space but 2000–2021 was particularly dry in both regards. Of all 22-yr periods since 800ce, only two (1130–1151 and 1276–1297) contained more years with negative soil moisture anomalies than the 18 observed during 2000–2021 (Extended Data Fig. 7a). Subregionally, 2000–2021 drought rankings were generally less severe relative to past megadroughts but 2000–2021 still ranked among the five driest 22-yr periods locally across 61% of SWNA (Fig. 1b). This represents the largest SWNA area to experience a top- five 22-yr drought-severity ranking in at least 1,200 years (Extended Data Fig. 7b).Exceptionally dry soil in 2021 was critical for the current drought to escalate and overtake the 1500s megadrought as the period with the highest 22-yr mean severity (Fig. 2a). The 2021 soil moisture anomaly (–2.58 ?) was nearly as dry as that of 2002 (–2.59 ?), the driest year in the 1901–2021 observational record and notable for its severe impacts on forest ecosystems and wildfire."

In case you are wondering how they calculated a megadrought without records dating back more then 120 years, its from measuring tree rings, a type of record other then pen and paper. To quote again:

" Soil moisture is a particularly important integrator of drought. Soil moisture impacts runoff ratios and therefore streamflow, agricultural productivity and irrigation demand, ecosystem productivity and health, wildfire activity and land–atmosphere feedbacks such as heatwave intensity. Summer soil moisture is particularly crucial, as summer is when water demand from ecosystems, humans and the atmosphere is generally highest, and also the season of focus in most tree-ring reconstructions of drought severity. According to a bucket-type water-balance model forced by monthly climate data, SWNA 0–200 cm soil moisture in summer (June–August) was below average in 18 of the 22 years from 2000–2021 (Extended Data Fig. 5). This turn-of-the-twenty-first-century drought was last investigated by Williams et al.5 through 2018, who speculated that the extended drought event may have been terminating in 2019 due to abundant precipitation that year. Dry conditions returned in 2020 and intensified substantially in 2021, however, indicating that the turn-of-the-twenty-first-century drought is not over."

Here's what NOAA has to say about the multiyear drought, where they make reference to the study: NOAA Research Spotlight Climate Driven Megadrought Quote: "From 2000 to 2021, temperatures in the region were 0.91 degrees Celsius (about 1.64 degrees Fahrenheit) higher than the average from 1950 to 1999."

An observable and immediate measurable indicator of the drought is the California Department of Water Resources Reservoirs Levels Map which shows the historic water level and what the current level is.
 
03/18/2022 04:02PM  
Thank you, Minnesotian.
 
03/19/2022 04:30AM  
Great Stuff Minnesotan-- but most of your data is based on non human induced data. The last 100 to 150 years is. Tree rings and all are great but do not show an accurate "human observed" trend of the last 120-150 years for precip out west.
" According to a bucket-type water-balance model forced by monthly climate data,"-- ( I could add on to this 1000 times for automated data at airport sites-- which are according to NOAA--CLIMATE SITES)
this data is not accurate - it comes from an automated system-- which misses At least 10% of falling precip ASOS/AWOS compared to a manual 8" gauge that a human would measure.-- more in heavy precip and more in the winter AND sometimes ALL precip without a human to back it up. With Automation in measuring "climate" -- especially precip- we have left the lines of what is "normal" compared to what it was before automation. You be the judge knowing this.

This is my job and has been for 25 years. Not taking away from your main point - yes temps are rising for some-- but precip totals at long range (100-150 years) climate sites are becoming CRAP. So any invest in them in the last 40 years (compared to the past) is not true science. I hate to say this- but it's truth. NWS knows this- but they sold a crappy system (ASOS / AWOS) to the FAA in the mid 1990's and now is mum on their mistake and will not take sides. Imagine that.

And if the world's climate is warming up- that means the mixing ratio of water vapor to saturation (ratio) is increasing and should force more precip on the Earth-- simple physics. Sure some areas will see more than others- just like temps. Being dogmatic on this worldwide is foolish - and any MET will tell you this.
Be careful with data you present. If it's automated- it's almost certain to have holes in it. So will human data- but not to the extent of this FULLY automation catastrophe that has ruined 100's of years of human observational weather records being that it's not the same "science" being recorded. Basically if your going to talk climate- (last 150 years is all I care about) make sure you know what your talking about with myself and others. Sure your post has all the data and all, but much of it- not to you personally- is hogwash when you actually work with it- which I do. Most here will dismiss me - but I got 25 years in the field as a professional. Just saying- but some will still say I'am crazy because ?? Some people put faith in people that know nothing.
Enjoy the weather- it's the only weather you got.


 
Minnesotian
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03/19/2022 08:15AM  

Good morning Whitewolf,
I'm not attacking you, let me make that clear. You had asked where they had gotten the 1200 year drought idea from. I found it. From a study that "was a collaboration among researchers from UCLA, NASA, and the Columbia Climate School."

I do have one question though for you. You say that the study I found was "based on non-human induced data." Can you define that term and it's limits and advantages a bit more? From your reply, and correct me if I am wrong, but it looks like you are tossing out any data that wasn't collected by a human living at the time of the observed data.

That seems like a pretty big deal what you say about the bad automation precip tracking since the 1990's and how automatic observations from the last 40 (100?) years is unreliable. Can you say more, because it sounds like a low-grade conspiracy theory right now.

You also say "Be careful with the data you present." I also say that to you. In fact, because of your years of experience and being a person of learned authority in the weather, I would say that line really applies to you more then me because of how people look to you for answers.
 
03/19/2022 04:10PM  
Minnesotian: "
Good morning Whitewolf,
I'm not attacking you, let me make that clear. You had asked where they had gotten the 1200 year drought idea from. I found it. From a study that "was a collaboration among researchers from UCLA, NASA, and the Columbia Climate School."


I do have one question though for you. You say that the study I found was "based on non-human induced data." Can you define that term and it's limits and advantages a bit more? From your reply, and correct me if I am wrong, but it looks like you are tossing out any data that wasn't collected by a human living at the time of the observed data.


That seems like a pretty big deal what you say about the bad automation precip tracking since the 1990's and how automatic observations from the last 40 (100?) years is unreliable. Can you say more, because it sounds like a low-grade conspiracy theory right now.


You also say "Be careful with the data you present." I also say that to you. In fact, because of your years of experience and being a person of learned authority in the weather, I would say that line really applies to you more then me because of how people look to you for answers. "


#1- Official climate data for most locations in the USA only goes back 100 to 150 years. Don't toss anything before that - but it's not official and should be treated that way. Droughts a 1000 years ago? Sure, but lets stick with what is actually recorded -- apples to apples so to say. Even then- and here is the automation deal- it's been tainted since automation removed human observers at about 80% of long term climate sites. Climate is not "observed" the same way it was before automation took over. That might be a shock to some, but it's the simple truth. Many examples I could give- one is snowfall. automation can't measure snowfall so at many climate sites- it has gone missing unless , in my point below, the NWS gets a COOP observer ( or other methods) to measure it , but in most instances not anywhere near the airport where it was measured before automation. Thus- its not observed at the same location and vastly skewed as you know snowfall/rainfall can vary greatly over small distances.

#2- as mentioned - ASOS/AWOS ( weather automation at your local airport)- tipping buckets that measure precip - will almost ALWAYS under report precip - especially in heavy rain and dry snow events. This is because of the design - I won't get into it, but a simple google search "tipping bucket (automated rain gauge) compared to manual (8" rain gauge) accuracy " should help. Most airports (official climate sites for much of the USA) are thus skewed compared to when humans did it at the airports. At a small % of sites across the USA- the NWS has realized this and has COOP observers that manually report precip (for free of charge).

#3- Good point. I try to present data (as it's given--see above) the best I know how to. But I also try to educate people in the "flys in the ointment" in the actual recording of the data. It's actually gotten so bad at some sites that even with data presented to the NWS from humans that manually recorded the data ( say precip) - the NWS will use the automation even when it's Missing due to automation error OVER the human data. Why? Because automation of weather data is here to stay and manual data is not.
Enjoy the weather- it's the only weather you got.
 
03/19/2022 04:59PM  
I do see with only 50 years' data that this winter was by far the windiest winter on record for Minnesota.
 
03/21/2022 05:24AM  
this will help drought conditions in the Northland-
URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
National Weather Service Duluth MN
331 AM CDT Mon Mar 21 2022

MNZ021-212045-
/O.NEW.KDLH.WS.W.0006.220322T0600Z-220323T1800Z/
Southern Cook-
Including the city of Grand Marais
331 AM CDT Mon Mar 21 2022

...WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 1 AM TUESDAY TO 1 PM CDT
WEDNESDAY...

* WHAT...Heavy snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 7 to 11
inches with locally higher amounts to 15 inches possible. Winds
gusting as high as 35 mph.

* WHERE...Southern Cook County. This includes the Tribal Lands
of the Grand Portage Reservation.

* WHEN...From 1 AM Tuesday to 1 PM CDT Wednesday.

* IMPACTS...Travel could be very difficult. The hazardous
conditions could impact the morning and evening commutes.

* ADDITIONAL DETAILS...Snow should be heavy and wet in nature and
may cause power outages and down trees. Ice accumulations of
around one tenth of an inch are possible near the Tofte area.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in
your vehicle in case of an emergency.

The latest road conditions can be obtained by calling 5 1 1.
Road conditions can also be found at 511mn.org for Minnesota or
511wi.gov for Wisconsin.

&&

$$
 
03/21/2022 05:29AM  
"IF" this happens- it will also delay ice out for several days- if not a week - if it didn't happen.---- Another one of these "snow events" almost makes certain of a late ice out for BW lakes---- though- not going there yet, but time is certainly running out for an avg to early ice out. (minus a big rain storm) . Hey- it helps the water column.!! (as does any moisture ) And that's what is needed now from last years lack of precip. Even if ice out is late with added moisture (usually the case) the Northwoods needs this after a very sub par precip of last winter/Spring/Summer --- A GOOD HEAVY SNOW will only help things in the long haul.

I see more (below normal temps / snow) in the future before this pattern breaks. ( mid April) Other areas further S (MSP etc) may still see accumulating snow and below normal temps (after this recent rise) -- but isn't that to be expected? In the last 10-20 years- the Springs have been much colder to avg compared to Falls ( OCT-DEC) in this neck of the woods. -- Winters have seem to be started slower, but hung on more. This season may be another case of that.
 
missmolly
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03/21/2022 01:30PM  
Pinetree: "I do see with only 50 years' data that this winter was by far the windiest winter on record for Minnesota."

Don't believe it. Anemometers are the Devil's Merry-Go-Round. Also, don't believe thermometers. Thermometers are the Devil's Soda Straws, which SHOULD HAVE BEEN RECALLED for having two sealed ends. Hell really needs some regulations.
 
03/22/2022 07:03AM  
How much H20 is in this storm?? - it's good for the Northland!!! (and more to come)

see lower left graphic. That's a ton for this time of year based on climo avg's. About a April or May avg precip in one storm. or just about what fell all of last winter (esp E) in one storm. Simply good news for water levels and busting the drought.


 
03/24/2022 08:34AM  
This week's map shows no change across all categories.

Here's the explanation for the region from the US Drought Monitor site:

Midwest

Abnormal dryness (D0) and moderate drought (D1) was reduced in coverage across parts of southwestern Iowa and northern Missouri this past week. A storm system that intensified over the Central and Southern Plains March 21-22 brought more than 2 inches of rain to these areas, reducing short-term (30 to 90 day) precipitation deficits. Moderately heavy rainfall also extended into portions of the central Corn Belt. However, despite many locations receiving upwards of 0.5 to 1 inch of above-normal rainfall, long-term drought is firmly entrenched in these areas, leading to a status quo depiction this week. Farther north across parts of northern Wisconsin and northern Michigan, a mix of snowmelt and 7-day precipitation totals led to some removal of D1, as root zone soil moisture and groundwater are beginning to recover, in addition to near and above-normal average stream flows. Conversely, D1 remains in adjacent areas in northwestern and northeastern Wisconsin, extending into the south-central Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where deeper soil moisture and groundwater indicators are recovering more slowly. Elsewhere in the Midwest, conditions are near or wetter than normal, leading to much of the southern Great Lakes and eastern Corn Belt remaining drought-free.

Here's the map:

 
03/24/2022 08:38AM  
I thought this summary from the same website on the drought conditions and recent rains/snow events was more helpful in explaining changes in drought (just not for MN!).

Summary

A series of storm systems moved across the lower 48 states this past week. Heavy rain fell across parts of the Great Plains and Southeast, with lighter amounts observed across parts of the Pacific Northwest and Intermountain West. The Central and Southern Plains, Lower Mississippi Valley, and Southeast mostly saw improvements to drought conditions, with several locations receiving more than 2 inches of rainfall (more than 5 inches, locally) during the 7 days leading up to March 22. Throughout much of the U.S., where antecedent dryness coincided with below-normal precipitation, drought either continued or worsened in intensity. The only areas where this was not true was across parts of the Upper Midwest, which experienced some removal of long-term drought due to improvements from melting snow cover.
 
03/31/2022 07:46AM  
Severe drought has finally disappeared from this latest Drought Monitor map. There is still a lot of places around MN that need moisture though.




Here is the link if you want to see the breakdown in drought by category.

Things are improving.
 
MidwestFirecraft
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04/01/2022 07:09AM  
That's great news!
 
04/04/2022 09:15AM  
Here's a climate outlook for the near term:



Note the olive color in the MN map as the climate prediction center considers this as "drought removal likely".
 
04/07/2022 07:44AM  
There's a little change on this week's map. Both the abnormally dry (yellow) and moderate drought (light brown) have almost imperceptibly shrunk. It looks like at least some of that decrease happened around Mille Lacs.



The link is here.

There is also a page for comparing the previous week to the current one. It makes discerning the week-to-week drought conditions easier to visualize. It's here. You will have to manipulate this page to select the "state" and "Minnesota" to get the two maps to display.
 
04/14/2022 06:59PM  
US Drought Monitor shows a shrinkage of moderate drought (light brown) in the BWCA and elsewhere. The percentage of Abnormally Dry (yellow) areas around the state also decreased, especially in the south and central/northeast.

Late wet spring weather is helping this trend.

 
04/21/2022 07:52AM  
Considerable reduction in drought in the north country and Arrowhead in this week's map.



Almost all of the "Moderate Drought" (light brown) has disappeared in the BWCA. There is a stubborn patch of it in hanging on and shrinking in the Sag/Knife area but conditions are improving.

Overall, Abnormal Dryness (yellow) has been shrinking throughout the state, especially in the central, west and northwest regions. However, a dry area has spread in far southern MN. Bad news for our farmers down in that area. Hopefully a few more April showers will continue into May and reverse that trend.

Overall, drought conditions continue to improve across the state.
 
Gadfly
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04/21/2022 08:27AM  
That's good to see, I'm guessing the longer winter/spring will help some with this. Was out at the hunting land over the weekend and it was very wet although that area is clay so it doesn't take much. Ponds are looking closer to normal but are still a bit low. I know people are tired of the cold and rain but I think it will help us catch back up at least a little.
 
04/21/2022 01:12PM  
My two cents- the drought is over and NWS basically agrees with a top 10 ten snowiest winter for the Arrowhead. That is nothing to shake a stick at. And copious moisture this weekend ---

Hydrologic Outlook
MNZ010>012-018>021-025-026-033>038-WIZ001>004-006>009-222100-

Hydrologic Outlook
National Weather Service Duluth MN
358 PM CDT Wed Apr 20 2022

...HYDROLOGIC OUTLOOK FOR SNOWMELT AND END OF WEEK RAINFALL...

A multi-day rainfall event this weekend may lead to flooding.

Our Spring 2022 weather conditions have been cooler than normal with above
normal precipitation across northeastern Minnesota and northwestern
Wisconsin. Snowmelt has occurred from south to north in our region leaving
saturated ground where the snowpack has completely melted. A heavy snowpack
remains in the Minnesota Arrowhead and along the International Border
to International Falls. Any rainfall over areas of saturated
ground or heavy snowpack will likely result in efficient runoff leading
to localized flooding.

A strong weather system, expected this Friday and Saturday, will bring
a short period of above normal temperatures to the region. This will
increase the snowmelt rate. Furthermore, heavy rainfall and thunderstorms
are possible with this system which will increase the chances for localized
flooding. Widespread minor flooding is possible due to poor drainage.
Streams and creeks will likely become bankfull and cause minor flooding
as runoff routes to our rivers. River flooding is possible during the
beginning of next week.

The Minnesota Arrowhead has an unusually deep snowpack with high moisture
content. Two feet of snow are common at higher elevation. This snowpack
ranks in the top 10 snowiest winters on record. Areas of the North Shore
in the highest elevation may absorb and store any new rainfall. However,
areas along the slopes of this area will exhibit strong melt in addition
to rainfall. Rapid runoff is possible causing potential flooding impacting
low-lying areas, ditches, culverts in addition to strong river rises.

The Rainy Lake Basin east of Lake of the Woods will likely see localized
flooding due to poor drainage. Strong rises are likely on the Littlefork
River, Big Fork and other drainages flowing north to the Rainy
River.

The Upper Mississippi Headwaters are saw new snow on Wednesday but most
snowpack had melted prior to this event. Again, localized minor flooding
due to poor drainage is likely in the headwaters. Runoff will increase
reservoirs levels throughout the system due to flood control for areas
downstream. Minor river flooding is possible along the Mississippi from
Aitkin to points downstream starting early next week.

The Lake Superior South Shore has snowpack remaining in the Bad River
Basin and the Bayfield Peninsula which could lead to localized flooding
enhanced by runoff and steep terrain.

The evolution of our Spring snowmelt runoff continues and looks to get
very active starting this weekend. If you live by a flood prone area
or immediately adjacent to a river or creek please be aware of water
levels. If you have poor drainage around your home make sure you have
an operating sump pump.
 
04/28/2022 07:38AM  
Just adding on to WW's extensive and informative post above (thanks Whitewolf!), here is this week's drought monitor map:



As can be seen from the map, the "light brown" moderate brown category has disappeared completely except for (0.10%) a sliver in the southernmost central part of the map. Abnormally dry (yellow) has shrunk statewide from 34.22% to 12.22%.

Rain is forecast this weekend starting today in the south of the state and spreading northward. I leave it to WW to give you the details :). Good news overall for farmers and canoeists alike.

P.s. I heard my first peepers this week. Surely I sign that spring is hear. And don't call me shirley.
 
05/05/2022 08:21AM  


Drought conditions continue to improve with the state reporting 93.55% of the state drought-free. The yellow "abnormal dryness" area in the state was cut in half from roughly 12.2% to 6.45%.

There is still a stubborn patch of abnormal dryness sticking around in the BWCA. A little more moisture is needed there to fill up the lakes and increase soil moisture.
 
05/12/2022 08:16AM  




A roughly 2% decrease in the "yellow" (abnormal dryness) affected-areas on the map. The BWCA area impacted by dryness hasn't change though. Maybe some of these latest rounds of rain will make it that far and raise overall moisture levels? However, it's a very positive position statewide, hydrologically-speaking.
 
05/12/2022 08:45AM  
I think we will see an elimination of any drought levels in the BW on next weeks map. The maps are compiled Tuesday and published on Thursday. This would make me think that they did not capture all the rain we have had the last two days. I have had 2.5ish inches at my place in Duluth heights in the last two days.
 
05/19/2022 10:26PM  
No surprise. The state is pretty much out of drought. Abnormal dryness was decreased from a little more than 4% to just under 3%, all on the southern edge of the state. It's absolutely gone in the BWCA (not surprising given the flooding in that area!)

Here's the map:

 
05/20/2022 08:13AM  
Terry,

I just wanted to say thank you for all your follow up work on posting the drought levels. I really appreciate it.
 
05/20/2022 08:52AM  
No problem! It's given me something to obsess over besides canoe trip planning during this winter and wet-and-cold spring! :)
 
06/02/2022 08:47AM  
MN is more water-logged than dry, but a small, shrinking patch of abnormal dryness exists in southern central MN. I'm sure with the consistent rainfall, this too will disappear soon. Here's the map:

 
06/02/2022 10:06AM  
Thank you High and Dry. I, too, appreciate your vigilance on this. Little did I know when I first posted this many moons ago that it would be a source of information now.

As the run off continues it will be interesting to see how things fare in mid- July through August. I have to admit, I'm still concerned about a drought returning though I have no scientific evidence to back it up.
 
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