Top Northeast Wisconsin Weather Stories in 2013

There were several significant weather events that affected north-central and northeast Wisconsin in 2013. Here's a list of the top weather stories for the year (in chronological order).

January Snow Storm

Heavy snow fell over much of Wisconsin on January 30 as an area of low pressure developed along an Arctic cold front and moved across the western Great Lakes. The storm was a quick-hitter, with much of the 4 to 9 inches of snow falling in a 12-hour period. Gusty northwest winds produced some blowing and drifting of the snow. Green Bay picked up 8.3" of snow and Appleton picked up 9".


April Ice Storm

A strong storm system moved into Wisconsin and produced a six-hour period of heavy freezing rain and mixed precipitation during the early morning hours of April 10. The same system produced severe thunderstorms across Iowa and southeast Minnesota earlier in the evening of April 9.

One quarter to one-half inch of ice accumulated on trees and powerlines in central and east-central Wisconsin. As a result, nearly 30,000 people were without power during the height of the storm as trees and powerlines buckled under the weight of the ice. The freezing rain fell quite heavily between about midnight and 3 AM and was accompanied by cloud-to-ground lightning strikes, sleet, hail, and large snow flakes. As much as 3 inches of snow fell just northwest of Green Bay. Click here for more about the event.

June Hail Storm

Thunderstorms moved across east-central Wisconsin during the late afternoon of June 27, and produced copious amounts of hail and gusty winds. Hail the size of golf balls and tennis balls fell in Manitowoc, which damaged hundreds of cars and at least 50 homes and businesses. At least $1.5 million in damage was reported.

July Tornadoes in Central and Northeast Wisconsin

Four weak tornadoes caused minor damage across central and northeast Wisconsin on July 9. Damage by the tornadoes was minimal, affecting mainly wooded areas and open fields in Lincoln, Langlade, Portage and Oconto counties.

July Heatwave and Summer Drought

Consecutive days with highs in the 90s and infrequent rainfall in July and August resulted in drought conditions across the southwest half of Wisconsin. The combination of the heat and lack of rain brought a rapid onset to the drought conditions in this portion of the state. One person died in the city of Manitowoc during the height of the hot weather as a direct result of the heat.  The lack of rain was localized across central Wisconsin during August.  During the month, the Marshfield Airport only received 0.48 inches and the Wisconsin Rapids Airport only 0.47 inches during the month.  Just to the north in Wausau, the August rainfall total for the month was 3.53 inches.  The intense heat between August 25th and 27th at Wisconsin Rapids (highs of 95,95 and 97 respectively) helped expand the severe drought (D2) into central Wisconsin. Dry conditions continued through September before above normal precipitation fell during October. 


                                                          Drought Monitor - September 3, 2013



August Fox Valley Tornado Outbreak

A line of severe thunderstorms raced across Wisconsin during the late night and early morning hours of August 6-7, producing wind damage and tornadoes in the east-central part of the state. Hundreds of homes, businesses and farm buildings were damaged. Thousands of trees and power lines were downed, leaving tens of thousands of people without power. Two injuries were reported during the storm. Six tornadoes occurred within the large area of straight-line winds, all within an hour. For more about the storms, click here.
Tornado track map

More August Severe Thunderstorms

Numerous thunderstorms produced high winds and hail as they moved across northeast and east-central Wisconsin during the evening of August 21. A severe thunderstorm in Shawano County produced winds of 85 to 95 mph, damaging two houses in Gresham. One person was killed in Keshena in Menomonee County when a tree fell onto her car. Over 100 trees were uprooted or snapped across the region.



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