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February 1-7, 2024

  • Weekly Summary

February 1-7, 2024

Anomalous Warmth Region-Wide

Average temperatures were above normal for every state in the region. The entire state of Minnesota observed average temperatures that were 20-25°F above normal (Figure 1). Much of the region was similarly warm, with average temperatures 6-10°F above normal for the Ohio Valley, and 10-15°F above normal along I-70. In Minnesota, the average statewide temperature for the week was 34°F, which was 24.6°F above normal. This was followed by Wisconsin at 20.7°F above normal, Iowa at 20.1°F above normal, and Missouri at 16.7°F above normal. Kentucky, which had the least anomalous departure, was still 11.1°F above normal. There were over 600 temperature records broken or tied in the first week of February alone, with over 400 of them being record high maximum temperatures (Figure 2).

Minimum temperatures were anomalously warm for the week, with departures of 25°F+ in northwestern Minnesota (Figure 3). Lesser, but still notable departures of 13-18°F were noted across much of the Upper Midwest, with minimum temperatures roughly 5-10°F above normal along and north of the Ohio River. Minimum temperatures in the 20s and 30s through Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan were more typical of high temperatures for this time of year. On January 7, minimum temperature records fell for most stations in Iowa and Minnesota. In International Falls, Minnesota, the minimum temperature was at or above 32°F two days in a row on February 7 and 8 for the first time in February since 2000, and the 7th time since records began in 1895.

Maximum temperatures averaged as much as 18°F-22°F above normal through the western Midwest, with areas east of the Mississippi River averaging 10-15°F above normal (Figure 4). Temperatures generally rose into the 50s and 60s for much of the week in Kentucky, Missouri, southern Illinois, southern Indiana, and southern Ohio. In Minnesota and western Wisconsin, maximum temperatures averaged in the upper 40s, which is more typical of late March for those areas.

A Dry February Start

Several states recorded no precipitation statewide, or 0 percent of normal precipitation (Figure 5). This figure includes Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Michigan, Minnesota, and Iowa recorded less than 5 percent of normal precipitation. The only state with appreciable precipitation was Missouri, where the state averaged 75 percent of normal precipitation, and only the far southwestern corner of the state recorded above-normal precipitation. The system that went through southern Missouri brought nearly an inch of rain to Joplin, Missouri, and 1.25 inches Branson, Missouri.

There was just about no snowfall the entire first week of February for the region (Figure 6). This was the first time since 2012 that Muskegon, Michigan reported no snowfall during the first 7 days of February, and only the 8th time since records began in 1896. In Green Bay, Wisconsin, this was the first time since 1991 that no snowfall was observed during the first 7 days of February, and only the 6th time since records began in 1894. In Cleveland, Ohio, this was only the 4th time since records began in 1870 that the first 7 days of February recorded zero snowfall.


Drought coverage slightly decreased during the prior week, but most areas remained unchanged this week (Figure 7). Fifty-three percent of the region was under abnormally dry conditions, which was the lowest since May 2023. All this said, most of Iowa remained under drought conditions at the end of the period, which continues to serve as the longest streak of drought coverage for the state since records began in 2000.

Record-Breaking Winter

Most of the Midwest has seen record warm temperatures and record low snowfall totals, which factors into calculations for the Accumulated Winter Season Severity Index (AWSSI). AWSSI values are in the mild category for just about every Midwestern location, and many are seeing their warmest winter of all-time. As of the first week of February, every location in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula was having their warmest winter on record, including Sault Ste. Marie, Marquette, Herman, and Ironwood. As of February 7, Ironwood had an AWSSI value of 614—the lowest on record for that date is well above that at 957.

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