December 2009 Climatic Summary

December temperatures were quite cold, averaging 7 to 9 degrees below normal. All locations reported well below normal temperatures. Sundance in northeast Wyoming was the warm spot averaging 4.7 degrees below normal. The cold spot was at Wright 12W in northeast Wyoming where temperatures averaged 10.3 degrees below normal.
December was a wet month with precipitation averaging 200 to 225 percent of normal. The wettest areas were across the northwest and north central plains of western South Dakota where precipitation averaged 250 to 350 percent of normal. The driest areas were in the southern and central Black Hills where precipitation averaged 150 to 175 percent of normal. The wet spot was at Red Owl where precipitation was 438 percent of normal. Sundance and Wright 12W in northeast Wyoming were the dry spots with 84 percent of normal precipitation. The precipitation surplus for the month averaged 0.63 inches.
Snowfall was heavy across the region. Across the northern Black Hills and Bear Lodge Mountains 3 to 5 feet of snow fell. Across the southern and central Black Hills 10 to 20 inches of snow fell. On the plains of western South Dakota 18 to 36 inches of snow fell, with 8 to 15 inches on the plains of northeast Wyoming.

December storm summary...

On December 2 and 3…An upper level disturbance brought 4 to 8 inches of snow to the northern Black Hills.
 
On December 13…An upper level disturbance brought 2 to 4 inches of snow to the plains of southern and central South Dakota.
 
On December 23…An upper level disturbance moved across the region bringing 3 to 6 inches of snow to the northern Black Hills and Bear Lodge Mountains. On the plains of western South Dakota and northeast Wyoming 1 to 3 inches of snow fell.
 
On December 25 and 26…A deep upper low moved through Iowa and Minnesota bringing a record setting Christmas blizzard to the region. In the northern Black Hills and Bear Lodge Mountains 24 to 40 inches of snow fell. In the northern foothills 12 to 24 inches fell. Across the plains of western South Dakota 7 to 14 inches fell with some locally higher amounts near 20 inches. Over the southern and central Black Hills and across the plains of northeast Wyoming 3 to 6 inches fell. The highest snowfall totals were in Lead with 40.0 inches and Deadwood 2NE with 37.2 inches. The South Dakota plains also saw winds of 30-45 mph with gusts commonly over 60 mph. The highest wind gusts were 76 mph at the National Weather Service Office in Rapid City and 71 mph at the Rapid City Regional Airport.

 LOCAL EXTREMES

Temperature Data

Rapid City

 

Lead

 

Gillette

 

 

Temperature

Date

Temperature

Date

Temperature 

Date

Maximum Temperature

47 degrees

1st, 17th

45 degrees

1st

47 degrees

20th

Minimum Temperature

-13 degrees

9th

-12 degrees

9th

-20 degrees

9th

Precipitation Data

Rapid City

 

Lead

 

Gillette

 

Monthly Data

Amount

Data

Amount

Date

Amount

Date

Precipitation

0.72 inches

 

2.84 inches

 

0.74 inches

 

Snowfall

13.1 inches

 

63.0 inches

 

9.2 inches

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Data

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maximum Precipitation

0.20 inches

25th

1.11 inches

25th

0.18 inches

25th

Maximum Snowfall

3.4 inches

13th

26.0 inches

25th

3.0 inches

26th

 REGIONAL EXTREMES

Temperature Data

 

Western South Dakota

 

 

Northeastern Wyoming

 

 

Temperature

Site

Date

Temperature

Site

Date

Maximum Temperature

60 degrees

Cottonwood 2E

1st

58 degrees

Newcastle

1st

Minimum Temperature

-26 degrees

Lodgepole 5SW

15th

-28 degrees

Wright 12W

9th

Precipitation Data

 

Western South Dakota

 

 

Northeastern Wyoming

 

Monthly Data

Amount

Site

Date

Amount

Site

Date

Maximum Precipitation

2.96 inches

Deadwood 2NE

 

2.34 inches

Devils Tower

 

Minimum Precipitation

0.43 inches

Edgemont

 

0.20 inches

Upton

 

Maximum Snowfall

63.0 inches

Lead

 

34.0 inches

Hulett

 

Minimum Snowfall

7.0 inches

Edgemont

 

9.2 inches

Gillette 4SE
Wright 12W

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Data

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maximum Precipitation

1.41 inches

Bear Ridge

26th

0.88 inches

Devils Tower

26th

Maximum Snowfall

26.0 inches

Lead

25th

9.8 inches

Devils Tower

26th

 MONTHLY RECORDS   

LOCATION

DATE

NEW RECORD

OLD RECORD

DATE

Cottonwood 2E

12/26/2009

7.0 inches snowfall

7.0 inches snowfall

12/22/1981

Devils Tower

December

2.34 inches precipitation

1.81 inches precipitation

1989

Devils Tower

December

31.1 inches snowfall

28.0 inches snowfall

1969

Devils Tower

12/26/2009

9.8 inches snowfall

7.5 inches snowfall

12/24/1985

Dupree

12/25/2009

10.0 inches snowfall

9.0 inches snowfall

12/26/1988

Ft. Meade

December

17.0 inches snowfall

16.0 inches snowfall

1983

Interior 3NE

December

18.9 inches snowfall

13.7 inches snowfall

1996

Interior 3NE

12/26/2009

7.2 inches snowfall

4.0 inches snowfall

12/10/2000

Lead

12/25/2009

1.11 inches precipitation

1.05 inches precipitation

12/07/1963

Lead

12/25/2009

26.0 inches snowfall

17.8 inches snowfall

12/03/1993

Lemmon

December

35.5 inches snowfall

23.5 inches snowfall

1962

Lemmon

12/26/2009

16.0 inches snowfall

11.6 inches snowfall

12/17/1967

Maurine 12SW

December

21.5 inches snowfall

21.0 inches snowfall

1985

Maurine 12SW

12/26/2009

11.0 inches snowfall

9.2 inches snowfall

12/01/1984

Milesville 5NE

12/26/2009

14.0 inches snowfall

10.0 inches snowfall

12/07/1971

Oelrichs

December

1.25 inches precipitation

1.17 inches precipitation

1994

Oelrichs

12/26/2009

10 inches snowfall

10 inches snowfall

12/17/1993

Spearfish

December

34.5 inches snowfall

25.7 inches snowfall

1949

Spearfish

12/25/2009

18.0 inches snowfall

14.5 inches snowfall

12/11/1949

NWS Rapid City

December

14.5 inches snowfall

12.4 inches snowfall

1996

Wood

December

18.5 inches snowfall

18.5 inches snowfall

1951

Redig 11NE

12/25/2009

18.0 inches snowfall

9.0 inches snowfall

12/17/1993

Redig 11NE

12/25/2009

0.82 inches precipitation

0.56 inches precipitation

12/23/1972

Redig 11NE

December

40.0 inches snowfall

27.0 inches snowfall

1996

Redig 11NE

December

1.48 inches precipitation

1.05 inches precipitation

1996

 

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