State Climatologist observes changing Iowa rainfall patterns


DES MOINES, Iowa — The lack of rain in early June was a sort of change for normal here in the state of Iowa.

“June is for the northern 2/3 of state, the wettest month of the year typically receives regular rainfall cross the state,” said Dr. Justin Gilsan, Iowa State Climatologist. “We started warm and very dry preliminarily the eighth driest start to tune on record is back 149 years.”

In recent years, the rainfall pattern has changed some.

“We’re starting to see the trend wetter springs and wetter falls, and that’s impacting planting and harvesting we saw that in 2018, and 2019, and somewhat in 2020,” said Gilsan. “We started to dry out and that’s when we saw drought conditions creeping into Western Iowa.”

Also Gilsan said it should not be unexpected to experience a derecho.

“Climatologically, we expect a derecho every two years since 1980,” said Gilsan. “The last one was the August 10th event, they’re not a regularly occurring thing of course, if the conditions are right you can get a derecho, and they’re very hard to forecast even hours out.”

For more on the State Climatology Bureau click here.

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