Severe drought conditions extend south, west of Twin Cities metro; dry conditions persist

The United States Drought Monitor says more areas of Minnesota are seeing severe drought conditions than last week.

The latest data released Thursday morning — which doesn’t include data from Tuesday night’s rainfall — shows severe drought conditions are now in counties to the south and west of the Twin Cities metro area. Data is collected through 7 a.m. the Tuesday before the weekly report is released on Thursdays.

Data shows the severe drought classification is now in part or all of Redwood, Renville, Brown, Nicollet, Sibley, Le Sueur, McLeod, Carver, Scott, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Anoka and Washington counties.

Meanwhile, moderate drought is in the counties immediately surrounding those areas, extending west to the South Dakota border. Abnormally dry conditions stretch from Duluth south to Chisago County and west to the North Dakota and South Dakota borders.

The severe drought classification also includes part of extreme western Wisconsin, specifically, St. Croix and Pierce counties.

Much of northern Wisconsin — mainly north of Highway 29 — is seeing moderate drought or abnormally dry conditions, as well as Racine, Kenosha, and Walworth counties in extreme southeast Wisconsin. The latest report states no parts of Wisconsin were under a severe drought last week.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS Chief Meteorologist Ken Barlow says although it will be warm and sunny to end the work week, a few showers or thunderstorms are possible Saturday, with a few possibly lingering into Sunday.

CLICK HERE for the latest forecast, and HERE for the seven-day outlook.