<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> October 2012 Saint Cloud Weather Summary
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Daily Temperature Graphic for October 2012 2012 Daily Conditions at St. Cloud

Dryness Reaches Record Levels, But Warmth Disappears

Saint Cloud October 2012 Weather Summary  

The generally dry conditions that have plagued Minnesota since early summer continued in October 2012. According to the rainfall statistics from the Saint Cloud Regional Airport, only 0.73 inch fell during October. That was about double the amount needed to crack one of the 10 driest Octobers, but still 1.76 inches less than average. Combine that total with the extremely dry September (0.24 inch, 2nd driest on record) and the rainfall deficit has swollen nearly 5 inches in the past two months.

During the June-October period, St. Cloud is now 9.08 inches behind on rainfall. The 8.14 inches is the lowest five-month June-Oct rainfall in St. Cloud precipitation records, which date back to 1893. The previous record for low June-October rainfall was 9.06 inches, set in 1950. Note that this is much drier than the dry seasons St. Cloud has had in the past four growing seasons as well as drier than any single year during the last major drought in 1986-1989.

The weekly State Climatology Report on the late summer and fall drought shows that a strip of central Minnesota from Lac qui Parles through Benson, Wilmar, Atwater, Paynesville, St. Cloud, Big Lake and Elk River are running 8-10 inches below normal in rainfall since the third week of June. Because of the low amount of rainfall, the streamflow in the Mississippi River at St. Cloud is now among the lowest 5% of measurements. 88% of the subsoil moisture is rated as being very short or short on the October 31 Minnesota Crop Weather Bulletin. And, that strip of central Minnesota noted above is now rated as being in extreme drought, along with parts of northwest, west central, southwest, and south central Minnesota on the latest US Drought Monitor.

The dry weather culminated with 26 straight days without measurable rainfall between September 22 and October 17. However, many other dry seasons have had similar streaks. In 2010, there were 27 straight dry days between September 26 and October 22. In 2011, there were 26 straight dry days (Oct 24-Nov 18). In St. Cloud precipitation records there have been streaks more than twice as long, including a 57-day dry streak between November 29, 1898, and January 24, 1899.

There was a little relief from the dry conditions on October 23-25. During that time, a total of .56 inch fell, .42 inch on the 25th. In comparison, St. Cloud had only received .49 inch of rain in the nearly two months from August 23 through October 22.

A little bit of the October 25 precipitation fell as wet snow in St. Cloud. 0.3 inches accumulated for the month, 0.4 inches less than average. Note, however, from the monthly snowfall accumulations that Octobers have many years with little snowfall and a handful of years with some. The most recent was 2.5 inches in 2009, 6.4 inches in 2002 (most in October), 0.5 inch in 2001, 0.3 inch in 1997, and 6.0 inches in 1995. In comparison, October 2001 had 3.1 inches since the bulk of the Halloween blizzard snow fell on November 1.

The average October St. Cloud temperature was 44.4 degrees, 1.4 degrees cooler than average. This was the first month with a below average temperature since May 2011. St. Cloud had 14 consecutive months with above average temperatures from June 2011 through July 2012. The last month before October with an average temperature at least a degree below average? March 2011.

If St. Cloud were to have an average temperature in both November and December, 2012 would end up as the second warmest year in St. Cloud records with an average temperature of 46.7 degrees. The only year that was hotter than that was 1931 with an average temperature of 47.9 degrees.



    October 2012 Statistics

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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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Last updated: 3-November-2011
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