Drought report shows abnormally dry conditions increasing across Minnesota, Wisconsin

The Omega Block

The Omega Block

A new drought report released Thursday morning shows the Midwest is in need of rain — again.

Earlier this year, Minnesota and Wisconsin were no longer considered to be in a drought, however, dry conditions have persisted throughout May and into early June, leaving much of both states under abnormally dry conditions.

This week’s report says while parts of Minnesota got up to an inch of rain as thunderstorms moved across the state, soil continues to dry out in the region.

In Minnesota, more than 65% of the state is now listed as being abnormally dry, more than double last week’s report of 30.4%. The area experiencing moderate drought conditions increased from 0.27% to 0.84%. That area includes nearly all of Rock County, as well as the southwest corners of Pipestone and Nobles Counties.

RELATED: Latest drought report shows less than 30% of Minnesota in dry conditions

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS Chief Meteorologist Ken Barlow says this week’s report is from around the same time as dry conditions began showing up across Minnesota in 2022. Barlow adds last June was very dry.

On May 31, 2022, there was no part of the state under a moderate drought, and less than 2% of Minnesota land was in abnormally dry conditions. That area included a band stretching across four of the state’s southernmost counties along the Iowa border. Records show those dry conditions then expanded to include the Twin Cities metro area as well as the counties directly west of the suburbs. The lack of rainfall continued to worsen conditions throughout the summer and fall. CLICK HERE for a map archive.

Across the St. Croix River, current conditions aren’t much better. Despite not having any unusually dry conditions reported in the entire state for weeks, more than 66% of the state now has an abnormal level of dryness. Less than 1% of Wisconsin land is now in a moderate drought and is contained to the extreme southeast corner of Kenosha County. At this time last year, only 23.16% of Wisconsin land was experiencing abnormally dry conditions.

Drought conditions in Wisconsin as of May 30, 2023. Credit: U.S. Drought Monitor

CLICK HERE for the latest forecast, which calls for a chance of thunderstorms on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The storms may have some heavy downpours. An interactive radar can be found by CLICKING HERE.

RELATED: Woodbury residents can only water lawns twice per week