Minot sets rainfall record

The amount of rainfall recorded on Minot’s south edge has surpassed the all-time mark set in 1975 and there are nearly four months remaining in 2013.

Rainfall this past weekend, as of 8 a.m. Monday, was measured at 1.08 inches by Jim Tarasenko at the North Central Research and Extension Center. The center is located immediately south of the city. The total brought the yearly amount of rain at that location to 27.51 inches, besting the old mark of 26.99 inches.

At the Minot International Airport, the 24-hour total measured at 7 a.m. Monday was .49 inches, bringing the yearly rainfall total at that location to 20.66 inches. That compares to a record 28.39 inches received in 1975 and moves 2013 up to 18th on the all-time precipitation rankings at the airport. The 96-year average for rainfall at the Minot Airport is 17.19 inches.

The Minot region was spared the deluge that pelted a large portion of the state this past weekend. An astounding 7.92 inches of rain was recorded on the southern edge of the city of Hettinger. South of Bowman, 7.5 inches of rainfall caused some gauges to overflow. According to the National Weather Service, rainfall from four to five inches or more was recorded at several locations over a broad portion of southwest North Dakota.

“This is something you maybe see in July with Gulf of Mexico moisture, kind of slow moving,” said Patrick Ayd, NWS meteorologist in Bismarck. “Obviously it is a little unusual, especially for the early part of September when it starts to dry up.”

Dickinson set a rainfall record this past Sunday, receiving 1.87 inches. The old mark for the date was .82 set in 2007. Williston recorded 1.23 inches, snapping the daily record of 1.03 set in 1941.

Elsewhere, rainfall totals included 2.89 inches at Beulah, 1.85 at Max, 1.75 at Garrison, 1.73 at Watford City, .90 at Turtle Lake, .48 at Bottineau and .48 at Willow City.

“The next four to five days look fairly dry,” said Ayd. “Don’t look for another chance of rain until Saturday, maybe scattered thunderstorms.”

According to Ayd, Minot was poised to receive very heavy rainfall this past weekend. However, the heavy thunderstorms that developed in the southern part of the state disrupted the flow of moisture to the north, sparing Minot several more inches of rainfall.

With the one-year rainfall record already shattered at the Research and Extension Center, and the airport mark in position to fall, the question now becomes how much more precipitation will the Minot region receive before 2013 comes to a close? Average precipitation from now through the end of the year is nearly four inches, but this year has been anything but average.