Weather

Average Temperatures for Minnesota
There's no doubt that Minnesota has a cool climate, but did you know that it's actually not the coldest State in the U.S.? In fact, it's not even the second or third coldest State in the U.S., it's the fourth according to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), for the years 1971-2000. The following chart shows the average monthly temperatures for Minnesota, in relation to the rest of the contiguous U.S. states.

Average Temperature by Month (1971-2000)
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Average
Minnesota 8 15 28 42 56 65 69 67 57 45 28 14 41
U.S. Average * 30 34 42 51 61 69 74 72 65 54 42 33 52
*excluding Alaska and Hawaii

(SOURCE: NOAA - Alaska is not included in the above data, but it actually has the lowest Average Temperature of any State in the U.S., followed by North Dakota, Maine, and then Minnesota)

Average annual precipitation (rain)
Northwest: 19 inches/year
Southeast: 34 inches/year

Average annual snowfall
Northeast: 70 inches/year
Southwest: 35 inches/year

Latest spring freeze
April 29 - metro area
May 27 - far north

Earliest fall freeze
October 5 - metro area
September 16 - far north

Extreme Weather Conditions in Minnesota
What's less known about Minnesota weather are the extreme weather conditions in the summer months. The following is a chart of Minnesota weather extremes that includes both winter and summer months.

Climate Extremes for Minnesota
Temperature Record Date Location County
Maximum 114 degrees F. July 29, 1917
July 6, 1936
Beardsley
Moorhead
Big Stone
Clay
Minimum -60 degrees F. February 2, 1996 near Tower St. Louis
Maximum 24-hour change 71 degrees F. April 3, 1982 Lamberton Redwood
Dewpoint
Highest Dewpoint - Twin Cities 82 degrees F. July 19, 2011 Minneapolis-St. Paul Hennepin
Highest Dewpoint - Statewide 88 degrees F. July 19, 2011 Moorhead, MN Clay
Heat Index - A measure of how hot it feels to the human body when combining temperature and humidity
Highest Heat Index - Twin Cities 119 degrees F. July 11, 1966
(tied July 19, 2011)
Minneapolis-St. Paul Hennepin
Highest Heat Index - Statewide 134 degrees F.
(unofficial)
July 19, 2011 Moorhead Clay
Snow (also see Snow Storms and Blizzards)
Maximum 24-hour snowfall 36.0 inches January 7, 1994 near Finland Lake
Maximum single storm snowfall 46.5 inches January 6-8, 1994 near Finland Lake
Maximum seasonal snowfall 170.5 inches 1949-1950 near Grand Portage Cook
Maximum snow cover 75 inches March 28, 1950 near Grand Portage Cook
Earliest measurable snowfall 0.3 inches Sept. 14, 1964 International Falls Koochiching
Latest measurable snowfall - Statewide 1.5 inches June 4, 1935 Mizpah Koochiching
Latest measurable snowfall - Twin Cities 0.1 inches May 24, 1925 Twin Cities
Rain
Maximum 24-hour total 15.10 inches August 19, 2007 Hokah Houston
Maximum monthly total 23.86 inches August 2007 Hokah Houston
Maximum annual total 53.52 inches 1991 St. Francis Anoka
Minimum annual total 6.37 inches 1976 Ortonville Big Stone
Longest dry spell 79 days 11/9/43 - 1/26/44 Beardsley, Canby,
Marshall, Dawson
Wind
Maximum measured gust (1) 121 mph (unofficial) September 1, 2011 Donaldson, MN Kittson
110 mph (tornado) August 20, 1904 Minneapolis, MN Hennepin
Barometric Pressure
Maximum 31.11 inches January 21, 1922 Collegeville Stearns
Minimum (NWS - Duluth, MN) 28.21 inches October 26, 2010 Bigfork Itasca

(1) These are "recorded" wind speeds. Gusts as high as 170 mph have been reported (Wadena, MN 2010), but never verified because most wind speed devices blow away or get damaged in high wind gust situations.
(SOURCE: Most Data from Minnesota Climatology Working Group)

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