By Frank Turner
Over the past month, parts of the southwest region of North Dakota have experienced three to four times more rain than the usual average. According to the National Weather Service, the chance for above average precipitation will continue into September.
In addition to more rain, Meteorologist Ken Simosko also said to expect below average temperatures.
“For the last couple of months, precipitation has been 600 percent above normal,” said Simosko. “It’s been wet across southwest North Dakota, western South Dakota, eastern Montana, and eastern Wyoming.”
The meteorologist suspected that the extra rain has been a result from storms traveling in from the North. He explained that over the past month, storms that build in the northern tip of the Rocky Mountains have been moving into the Midwest area and sitting there for long periods of time.
He also attributed the recent rainstorms to a consistent low-pressure system in the Midwest region.
Simosko explained, “The fronts that make it down from Canada or Montana, a lot of times, get stuck in the northern Rockies, and they develop and merge into the Midwest.”
Megan Jones, another meteorologist with the National Weather Service added, “Because you are right on the edge of North Dakota, South Dakota, and Montana, you seem to be in the area where there has been the highest level of precipitation consistently over the summer.”
As the fall season approaches, the meteorologists noted that the rainy trend could continue.
When looking at previous data, the average rainfall for the area is usually 1.63 inches, and the average temperature is 56.5 degrees.
Although the National Weather Service meteorologists cannot tell exactly how much to rain to expect in the coming weeks, they said that their indicators point toward a good chance for above average rainfall and cooler weather for the month of September.
Simosko added that the cooler temperatures are likely due to more cloud cover associated with the expected rainstorms, and as conditions start to cool, the likelihood of extreme weather condition will start to drop.
So there you have it folks. As we head into harvest season, keep an umbrella nearby and an eye out for puddles.
The trend for above average rainfall doesn’t appear to be stopping any time soon.