<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> October 2008 Saint Cloud Weather Summary
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Moderately Warm and Wet

Saint Cloud October 2008 Weather Summary  

St. Cloud came into October 2008 still needing to catch up to near normal rainfall. While this October wasn't nearly as wet as last October, it did deliver the moisture. A total of 2.60 inches of rain fell in October at the Saint Cloud Regional Airport, 0.36 inch above the normal amount. A large percentage (79%) of the rain fell during during October 5-13. There were 2.06 inches during this nine-day period with at least one-tenth inch fell on 6 of the 9 days. Nearly half of the October rain (1.24 inches) fell in thunderstorms during October 7. During the first half of that nine-day span, Minnesota was being affected by a slow-moving major storm through the central US. During the second half, there were a series of fast-moving storms that dropped precipitation. Over the whole period, temperatures were warmer than normal. The only exception were the 6th and the 10th, when that slow-moving storm kept cloud cover over us the entire day. On the 12th, it felt downright tropical with a low of only 61 degrees, one degree short of the record warm low for that date.

During the second half of the month, conditions dried out considerably as the steering winds became more northwesterly, producing surges of cooler and drier air. There were only 5 days with measurable precipitation after October 13 with only October 22 producing more than .07 inch of rain. This included the first wet snow of the year on October 26. Wet snow fell, but all melted on contact with the ground.

The rainfall did continue to ease the dry conditions in central Minnesota. By the middle of the month, most of the area ranked in drought by the National Drought Mitigation Center's Drought Monitor had disappeared (see the six week loop of Drought Monitors). The latest Drought Monitor shows that moderate drought remains in southeastern Minnesota, but the most severe dry conditions were all in Wisconsin. The Minnesota State Climatology Office report from Oct 30 on our dry summer shows that the worst rainfall deficits begin near the Stearns-Wright County and the Benton-Sherburne County borders. An area to the north of St. Cloud from Little Falls to Hinckley had near normal to above normal rainfall. While rainfall deficits since June 15 were in the 1-3 inch range in most of Stearns and Benton counties, they increase to 6-8 inches around Elk River, Otsego, Rogers, and the Twin Cities. That driest part of Minnesota extends from the Minnesota River around Mankato east and southward to the Iowa and Wisconsin borders. Some areas of extreme southeastern Minnesota, including Winona and Preston, have rainfall deficits over 8 inches.

The worst rainfall deficit in St. Cloud was 4.00 inches between June 15 and September 10.

Temperature-wise, October 2008 was warm in Saint Cloud, but also not as warm as last year. The average temperature at the St. Cloud Regional Airport was 47.1°F, 1.8°F above normal. The only really cold spell came in the wake of a strong storm that pushed through Minnesota October 22-24. On the back side of that storm, a Canadian high propelled cold air on very strong winds that exceeded 60 MPH in portions of west central and southern Minnesota and 47 MPH in St. Cloud on October 26. Then, on the 27th, the high temperature only got to 40°F with lows dropping in the lower 20's for three straight days. This late October cold outbreak swept all the way to the Gulf Coast, producing frost as far south as southern Georgia and north central Florida.

Despite that cold outbreak and a near frost early in September, the first frost in St. Cloud didn't occur until October 4, ranking as one of the later frosts in St. Cloud records. The first hard freeze (low temperature of at least 28°F) occurred on October 21, among the latest 10% of hard freezes in St. Cloud records. Since the last spring frost was April 30, the growing season lasted 157 days, the longest growing season in St. Cloud since 159 days in 1970.


    October 2008 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: 1-November-2007
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