Dry weather persists across our region

...WATER RESOURCES STATEMENT AND OUTLOOK...

THIS OUTLOOK COVERS THE GRAND FORKS HYDROLOGIC SERVICE AREA...HSA...WHICH ENCOMPASSES 35 COUNTIES ACROSS EASTERN NORTH DAKOTA AND NORTHWESTERN MINNESOTA. THE PRIMARY RIVER BASIN IS THE RED RIVER OF THE NORTH...ALONG WITH ITS MINNESOTA AND NORTH DAKOTA TRIBUTARIES. MAJOR LAKE BASINS INCLUDE DEVILS LAKE...THE UPPER AND LOWER RED LAKES AS WELL AS PORTIONS OF LAKE OF THE WOODS.

...CONTINUED BELOW NORMAL PRECIPITATION PATTERNS MAY ENHANCE DROUGHT CONDITIONS THIS SUMMER...

.SYNOPSIS...
MODERATE TO EXTREME DROUGHT CONDITIONS DEVELOPED DURING THE SUMMER OF 2006...WITH DRY CONDITIONS CONTINUING INTO THE 2006-2007 WINTER SEASON. THIS IS A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE FROM THE 1992-2005 TIME PERIOD...WHEN PREDOMINANTLY WET SUMMER AND FALL SEASONS PREVAILED. SINCE NOVEMBER 2006 MOST OF THE GRAND FORKS HSA HAS EXPERIENCED BELOW NORMAL PRECIPITATION. PORTIONS OF NORTH CENTRAL AND CENTRAL MINNESOTA HAVE RECEIVED LESS THAN 25 PERCENT OF NORMAL AND ARE CURRENTLY CLASSIFIED IN EXTREME DROUGHT CONDITIONS. LESS SEVERE CONDITIONS ARE FOUND OVER WEST CENTRAL MINNESOTA...THE RED RIVER VALLEY AND EASTERN NORTH DAKOTA. SMALL PORTIONS OF THE CENTRAL AND NORTHERN RED RIVER VALLEY PROPER HAVE EXPERIENCED ABOVE NORMAL RAIN OR SNOW FALL.

.LOCAL AREAS AFFECTED...
MINNESOTA COUNTIES IN EXTREME DROUGHT INCLUDE LAKE OF THE WOODS...ROSEAU...EASTERN MARSHALL... EASTERN PENNINGTON...BELTRAMI...CLEARWATER...HUBBARD AND WADENA. CONDITIONS VARY WIDELY ALONG THE RED RIVER CORRIDOR AND ACROSS EASTERN NORTH DAKOTA...WITH MOST OF THESE AREAS CLASSIFIED AS EITHER EXCEPTIONALLY DRY OR IN MODERATE DROUGHT. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE FROM THE U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR.

.CLIMATE SUMMARY...
TEMPERATURES WERE CONSISTENTLY ABOVE NORMAL DURING 2006...WITH SUMMER TEMPERATURES RUNNING 2 TO 4 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL MUCH OF THE SUMMER SEASON. PRECIPITATION WAS BELOW NORMAL DURING MUCH OF THE GROWING SEASON...CAUSING SOME STRESS ON SHORT SEASON CROPS AND SMALL GRAINS.

.SOIL MOISTURE CONTENT...
ADEQUATE SUB SURFACE MOISTURE...PARTICULARLY IN THE RED RIVER VALLEY...ALLOWED FOR GOOD CROP PLANTING CONDITIONS IN THE SPRING OF 2006. AS STATED ABOVE...2006 GROWING SEASON PRECIPITATION WAS BELOW NORMAL IN MOST AREAS. THE BELOW NORMAL PRECIPITATION COMBINED WITH ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES LIKELY CONTRIBUTED TO CROP STRESS. LOCALIZED HEAVY RAINS LATE IN THE GROWING SEASON WERE ESPECIALLY BENEFICIAL TO LATE SEASON CROPS. GOING INTO THE WINTER FREEZE UP...SOIL MOISTURE WAS RATED AS LOW TO VERY LOW BY THE USDA.

.RIVER AND STREAMFLOW CONDITIONS...
ALL AREA RIVERS ARE ICE AFFECTED AND STREAMFLOW READINGS WERE NOT AVAILABLE AT THIS TIME.

.PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK...
AN EL NINO IS OCCURRING IN THE EQUATORIAL PACIFIC. THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER INDICATES A FAIRLY HIGH LIKELIHOOD...55 PERCENT OR MORE...THAT THE REST OF THE WINTER SEASON WILL CONTINUE WARMER THAN NORMAL IN THE GRAND FORKS HSA. DURING EL NINO EVENTS...WINTER SNOWFALL IS TYPICALLY 85 TO 90 PERCENT OF THE CLIMATIC NORMAL. THIS WOULD EQUATE TO 35 TO 40 INCHES OF SNOW DURING THE COLD SEASON. SO FAR THIS WINTER SEASON...SNOW FALLS GENERALLY RANGE FROM 30 TO 50 PERCENT OF NORMAL. LACK OF SIGNIFICANT SNOWFALL AND LOW MOISTURE CONTENT OF THE SNOW PACK WOULD INDICATE THAT DROUGHT CONDITIONS WILL PERSIST INTO THE SPRING PLANTING SEASON.

.QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ABOUT THIS DROUGHT INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT...

MARK EWENS
DROUGHT FOCAL POINT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
GRAND FORKS, ND 58201
TELEPHONE 701.772.0720 X327
MARK.EWENS@NOAA.GOV

.RELATED WEB SITES...
LOCAL WEATHER...CLIMATE AND WATER INFORMATION...
LOCAL NWS SITE
WWW.CRH.NOAA.GOV/FGF ALL LOWER CASE
CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER...
HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

ADDITIONAL RIVER INFORMATION...
THESE WEB SITES ARE PROVIDED FOR REFERENCE AND INFORMATION. YOUR
NOAAS NWS MAKES NO CLAIMS TO THE CONTENT OF NON NOAA WEB SITES.

USGS - HTTP://WATER.USGS.GOV
USACE - HTTP://WWW.MVR.USACE.ARMY.MIL
U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR...
HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.UNL.EDU/DM/INDEX.HTML

.ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...
THE DROUGHT MONITOR IS A MULTI-AGENCY EFFORT INVOLVING NOAA/S NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AND NATIONAL CLIMATIC DATA CENTER...THE USDA...STATE AND REGIONAL CENTER CLIMATOLOGISTS AND THE NATIONAL DROUGHT MITIGATION CENTER. INFORMATION FOR THIS STATEMENT HAS BEEN GATHERED FROM NWS AND FAA OBSERVATION SITES...STATE COOPERATIVE EXTENSION SERVICES...THE USDA...USACE AND USGS.

.NEXT ISSUANCE...
THE NEXT SCHEDULED ISSUANCE OF THE DROUGHT AND WATER RESOURCES OUTLOOK WILL BE IN LATE FEBRUARY.

Departure from normal precipitation mid October 2006 - mid January 2007

Percent of normal precipitation mid October 2006 to mind January 2007.

Seasonal Drought Outlook

Drought Outlook issued January 18 2007, valid through April 2007



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