2018 Weather Recap Part 2: Drought in ND in August & Blizzard to End The Year

FARGO, N.D. – The second half of the year started off with severe weather. Then as Fall rolled around was a little more calm, but then got cold and ended with severe weather.

July was average for rain and temperatures but there were several rounds of severe weather. The second brought hail and wall clouds into Minnesota. Ping pong ball sized hail was reported in Sargent County, North Dakota. Independence Day brought a tornado that flipped a camper near Pelican Lake. The 8th saw a storm with wind damage near New Rockford and a tornado in Milnor.

More tornadoes occurred in August. The night of August 26th saw two separate tornadoes near Winger and Fosston. Hail in that event damaged cars, windows and roofs in Cass County. Despite the storms, much of North Dakota stayed in a drought through the month. Dry conditions put extra stress on farmers.

September rain was near average. That did not alleviate the drought. Northeast North Dakota even saw worsening conditions. Temperatures in the month started above average then swung below late. This foreshadowed how Fall played out.

October was not just cold: it was the seventh coldest recorded in Fargo. The 12th set a new low temperature record. The month saw the first snowfall of the season. Fargo received more than 1.5 inches of snow. Average snowfall in the whole month is almost an inch less than that. Parts of eastern North Dakota received more than a foot of snow.

November saw less snow, but held on to cold temperatures. More than half the month was colder than average. Fargo received more snow than the October, but that accumulation was below average.  the last few days of the month saw an uptick in temperatures. This set up December for a nice start.

Much of the beginning of December had above average temperatures. Snow pack melted. Travel in the middle of the month had few delays. But just before the year ended, Winter came in full. A snow storm hit the day after Christmas and turned into a blizzard the next day. Snow in Fargo totaled 8.5 inches. Lakes country got more than a foot.  The final few hours of 2018 brought more snow. New Year’s Eve had more blizzard warnings. High winds created whiteout conditions.

With some warmer water off the coast of South America, the start of 2019 is looking a little bit warmer than average setting us up for a really nice start to the year.


Categories: Weather Blog