Minnesota 2009: High water and drought

Rainy Lake.jpg

High water laps at boat docks on Rainy Lake in June. Photo by Lee Grim; Voyageurs National Park.

New report, same old drought. Add Duluth and Benson to the areas in Minnesota with deepening dryness this week. Much of central and eastern Minnesota remains unusually dry as we open July.

That’s why some folks are surprised when they make the trip to Rainy Lake in the far north. While lake levels are low in the metro, waves are washing over docks on windy days on Rainy. Lake levels have come down a bit since early June, but they are still high. It’s not a huge surprise, since International Falls received over 100 inches of snow last winter. All that runoff had to go somewhere this spring.

Today’s drought report holds firm with moderate to severe drought in the metro. There is also an increasing area of moderate drought in west central Minnesota near Benson and Appleton.

It’s amazing to live in a state where weather patterns can vary widely over short distances. I guess in the weather business we call that “job security.”


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