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Daryl Ritchison, Published September 02 2012

Weather Talk: Record books show us area can get much drier than this

This past winter, 27 inches of snow was measured in Fargo-Moorhead. That was the lowest total since the winter of 1986-87, yet only ranked as the 26th-lowest snow total on record. Granted, snow-measuring techniques have changed, but after nearly a quarter of a century of wet years, it is easy to forget how dry this area can be.

This summer, Hector International Airport recorded 6.3 inches of rain, but it did not rank as low as many people thought. Using the official records, June through August ranked as the 25th-driest such period on record. If you used the rainfall recorded at WDAY, where we measured just 5.22 inches, that ranking would drop to the 14th driest; yet, even that is not in the top 10 driest on record.

Some localized areas did have less rain than Fargo-Moorhead, but overall, the past reminds us that it can get a whole lot drier than this summer.

Have a weather question you’d like answered? Email weather@wday.com, or write to WDAY Stormtracker, WDAY-TV, Box 2466, Fargo, ND 58108

Read the blog at stormtrack.areavoices.com