<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> August 2005 and Summer 2005 Saint Cloud Weather Summary
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This Month's Daily Statistics

Hot for a While, Dry for a While, But Not the Worst

Saint Cloud Weather Summary for August 2005 and Summer 2005

Issued: Friday, September 2, 2005 7:11 AM

The summer of 2005 in Saint Cloud will be remembered for being very hot at times and very dry at times, but the overall statistics won't this. Saint Cloud's August 2005 average temperature was 68.1°F, only 0.9°F warmer than normal. This near normal warmth in August produced a meteorological summer (June 1 - August 31) 2005 that was warmer than normal, but not nearly record-breaking.

Saint Cloud Regional Airport's average summer temperature was 70.4°F, 3.0°F warmer than normal. This left summer 2005 as the 21st warmest summer of 125 years in Saint Cloud records. The first 10 days of August put 2005 on track to break into one of the 10 warmest summers on record. There were 6 days with a high of at least 87°F and 2 nights with a low of at least 70°F. However, a major cool front moved through on the 11th. While there were periods of warmth and humidity at times during the rest of August, there were only 6 days of the final 20 with a high of at least 80°F, none warmer than 84°F on the 16th.

Extreme statistics brought home the heat of July 2005 in the Twin Cities, but ended up being average in Saint Cloud. The 2 August days with a high of at least 90°F brought the 2005 total of 90+°F days to 12. The normal number of 90+°F is 11.4 days, so it was near normal. However, this is the most 90+°F highs since 1988. That statistics is more a result that recent summers have been cooler than normal rather than showing any extreme heat this year. Since 1990, this summer marks only the 5th summer with well above normal temperatures. The number of 90+°F highs this year beat the recent summer of 1989 (11 days), and tied the summers of 1999 and 2003. Only 1995 (15 days) and 2001 (18 days) had more 90 degree days since 1988. However, there have been many warm summers in the first half of the 20th century. The most recent really hot summer was 1988 with 33 days with a high of at least 90 degrees.

The one significant statistic was the number of days with low of 70+°F. There were two more lows of at least 70°F in August, including a record-breaking 74°F low on the 8th. For the year so far, Saint Cloud has had 7 lows of at least 70°F, which ranks as the 11th most number of warm lows and the most we've seen since 1955. Since warm low temperatures are a sign of high humidity, you could make the argument that, at its worst, the summer of 2005 was one of the worst we've seen in Saint Cloud.

Despite an intense dry spell lasting about 9 weeks, summer 2005 rainfall in Saint Cloud ended up only a bit below normal. The total summer rainfall at the Saint Cloud Regional Airport was 10.12 inches, 1.66 inches below normal. The key to bringing rainfall totals near normal was the heavy rainstorm on August 25-26.   This storm produced 5-8.5 inches of rain in west central Minnesota from Alexandria and Glenwood through New London, Brooten, and Willmar. In Saint Cloud, there were 2.28 inches of rain at the Saint Cloud Airport and 2.86 inches at Saint Cloud State University. This ranked as the 7th heaviest 24-hour rainfall at SCSU during the past 15 years. To put this storm in perspective, the normal amount of rainfall for the entire month of August is 3.93 inches, so much of the area to our west received 1-2 Augusts worth of rain in a period 3-6 hours.

However, the rainfall of summer 2005 was basically a parched sandwich. During the period of June 15 through August 25, rainfall in Saint Cloud totalled only 4.90 inches, which was a bit more than 4 inches below normal. We got off to a wet start the first two weeks of June with nearly 3 inches of rain and rain on 10 of the first 14 days (yes, I remember all of you who came to me in May and early June asking if we would ever have summer). Then, we had the long dry spell.

In fact, the summer could have been even drier, but we had a tendency to get substantial rains on the days that it did rain. There were only 12 days with measurable rainfall in July and August, the fewest since 1970, but 9 of the 12 days produced at least 0.10 inch. For the entire summer, there was rainfall on 27 days (ranks as 36th fewest out of 109 summers), but there was at least one-quarter inch of rain on 15 days and at least half on inch on 12 days.

Where is the rainfall at the end of the summer months? The growing season (April 1 - August 29) rainfall chart from the Minnesota State Climatology Office shows that eastern Wright and much of Sherburne Counties still show rainfall of 10-20% below normal. The driest conditions remain in extreme eastern Minnesota from the North Shore and eastern Superior National Forest into the Saint Croix River Valley. The August 30 Drought Monitor from the National Drought Mitigation Center still shows that parts of eastern and northeastern Minnesota are along the western edge of the more serious dry spell reaching from Upper Michigan and Wisconsin into eastern Iowa, parts of Illinois, and further to the south.

The actual effect of the dry spell was worse than the numbers show due to both the intense heat (increasing water usage) and getting a lot of rain on a few days (more rain runs off into rivers and lakes, but less gets into the soil). However, we have had far worse dry spells in recent Saint Cloud history, as well as the prolonged drought of 1986-1989.

    While temperatures have been cool to near normal during the past several days, the summer 2005 is not over. In fact, we could add to our total of 90°F highs and 70°F lows this upcoming weekend. Check out my latest forecast, updated all weekend.

    August 2005 Statistics

Temperatures (°F)
August 2005
Normal
August 2005 Average High Temperature (°F)
80.1
78.9
August 2005 Average Low Temperature (°F)
56.1
55.5
August 2005 Mean Temperature for August (°F)
68.1
67.2
August Extremes
Temperature(°F)
Date
Warmest High Temperature for August 2005 (°F)
94
August 8th
Coldest High Temperature for August 2005 (°F)
70
August 22nd
Warmest Low Temperature for August 2005 (°F)
74 (set daily record; see below)
August 8th
Coldest Low Temperature for August 2005 (°F)
43
August 14th,23rd
Record Temperatures in August 2005
Temperature(°F)
Date
Old Record
Daily Record Warm Average
84 (tied record)
August 8th
tied record set in 1900
Daily Record Warm Low
74
August 8th
72 in 1949
Temperature Thresholds
Number of Days
Normal
August 2005 Days with High Temperatures >= 90°F
2
3.13
2005 Total Days with High Temperature of At Least 90°F
12#
11.43
August 2005 Days with Low Temperatures >= 70°F
2
0.68
2005 Total Days with Days with Low Temperatures >= 70°F
7+
3.00
August 2005 Days with Low Temperatures >= 75°F
0
0.07
2005 Total Days with Days with Low Temperatures >= 75°F
1*
0.47
#45th most 90°+F highs out of 125 years
+
Most 70°+F lows since 1955
*51st day in Saint Cloud History with a low >= 75°F

Precipitation (in)
August 2005
Normal
August 2005 Precipitation (in)
3.64
3.93
August Extremes
Precipitation (in)
Date
Most Daily Precipitation in August 2005
2.28
Record Precipitation in August 2005
Precipitation (in)
Date
Old Record
No Precipitation Records Set
Precipitation Thresholds
Number of Days
Normal
August 2005 Days with Measurable (>= 0.01 inch) Precipitation
6
9.0
July-August 2005 Days with Measurable (>= 0.01 inch) Precipitation
12@
18.3
August 2005 Days with >= 0.10 inch Precipitation
5
5.6
August 2005 Days with >= 0.25 inch Precipitation
3
3.9
August 2005 Days with >= 0.50 inch Precipitation
2
2.4
August 2005 Days with >= 1.00 inch Precipitation
1
1.0
Total 2005 Days with Measurable (>= 0.01 inch) Precipitation
72
68.2
(Annual Normal: 97.3)
Total 2005 Days with >= 1.00 inch Precipitation
5
4.1
(Annual Normal: 5.5)
@10th Fewest July-August Days with Measurable Rainfall
Fewest Since 1970

Summer (June 1-August 31) 2005 Statistics

Temperatures (°F)
Summer 2005
Normal
Summer 2005 Average High Temperature (°F)
81.7
79.3
Summer 2005 Average Low Temperature (°F)
59.0
55.4
Summer 2005 Mean Temperature for Summer (°F)
70.4*
67.4
Temperature Thresholds
Number of Days
Normal
Summer 2005 Days with High Temperatures >= 90°F
12
10.00
Summer 2005 Days with Low Temperatures >= 70°F
7
2.81
Summer 2005 Days with Low Temperatures >= 75°F
1
0.45

* 21st warmest summer of 125 years in Saint Cloud history
Warmest summer since 1988

Link to Table of Top 10 Warmest/Coldest Summers
Precipitation (in)
Summer 2005
Normal
Summer 2005 Rainfall (in)
10.12
11.78
2005 Growing Season (April 1 - August 31) Rainfall (in)
15.53
16.88
2005 Total Precipitation (in)
18.95
19.73
Precipitation Thresholds
Number of Days
Normal
Summer 2005 Days with Measurable (>= 0.01 inch) Precipitation
27
29.1
Total 2005 Days with Measurable (>= 0.01 inch) Precipitation
72
68.2
(Annual Normal: 97.3)
Summer 2005 Days with >= 0.10 inch Precipitation
19
18.9
Total 2005 Days with >= 0.10 inch Precipitation
37
38.1
(Annual Normal: 52.9)
Summer 2005 Days with >= 0.25 inch Precipitation
15
13.1
Total 2005 Days with >= 0.25 inch Precipitation
26
24.0
(Annual Normal: 32.1)
Summer 2005 Days with >= 0.50 inch Precipitation
5
7.8
Total 2005 Days with >= 0.50 inch Precipitation
12
12.7
(Annual Normal: 16.8)
Summer 2005 Days with >= 1.00 inch Precipitation
1
3.1
Total 2005 Days with >= 1.00 inch Precipitation
3
4.1
(Annual Normal: 5.5)


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All climate data provided courtesy of NOAA/NWS
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and Minnesota Climatology Working Group, including the Minnesota State Climatologist's Office, University of Minnesota-Saint Paul Campus.

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Send comments to: raweisman@stcloudstate.edu
Last updated: Friday, September 2, 2005 7:11 AM
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