After pleasant weekend, forecast predicts temps in 90s

Moderate drought conditions persist in Cass, Crow Wing and Aitkin counties.

With temperatures in the 70s, Tre Loving splashes in the cool water of Whipple Lake Wednesday, May 27, in Baxter. Families dotted the sugar sand of Whipple Beach Park as the warm weather recreation season begins in the Brainerd lakes area. Steve Kohls / Brainerd Dispatch

Following a weekend of normal June weather filled with sunshine and pleasant temperatures, the National Weather Service in Duluth predicts a steamy week ahead.

Folks in the Brainerd lakes area were treated to sunny skies throughout the weekend during with a high of 72 Friday and 72 Saturday, just slightly below the normal of 76 degrees for each of those days. Sunday peaked at 78 degrees at the Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport in late afternoon.

Temperatures are expected to continue to increase as the week begins, with a predicted high of 82 Monday and 91 degrees Tuesday and Wednesday. The latter part of the week is forecast to return to the low 80s for highs, with 82 predicted for Thursday and 83 for Friday.

The weather service issued a hazardous weather outlook Sunday for portions of northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin, including the Brainerd lakes area. The statement warned of the chance of thunderstorms Sunday night, with a few strong storms possible including small hail, frequent cloud-to-ground lightning and brief gusty winds. Storms were expected to dissipate Monday morning, but the weather service noted there were several additional chances of thunderstorms Monday evening through Sunday, June 21. A few of the storms may be strong during that period, the outlook stated, but widespread severe weather was not anticipated.

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are all expected to be breezy. Monday’s forecast calls for a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms at night, the weather service reported. There also is a chance of thunderstorms Wednesday night, Thursday and Friday into the weekend, but the headline for the week is the likely 90-plus degrees the thermometer will read Tuesday and Wednesday.


June has generally been hotter than usual in the Brainerd area. The average high temperature for the month so far is 81.6 degrees, with the normal average for the month at 74.3 degrees. As of June 12, the highest temperature was 96 degrees on June 8 — a record-setting day for a high temperature, as well as the highest low.

According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, as of Tuesday, June 9, much of Cass and Crow Wing counties along with the northern third of Aitkin County were in a state of moderate drought, with the rest of the surrounding area considered abnormally dry.

With just one-quarter of an inch of precipitation recorded since that date, those conditions have persisted. So far for the month of June, the Brainerd area has seen .59 inches of rain. Normal rainfall for June is 1.44 inches. This comes as the month of May was also unusually dry, with .8 inches recorded the whole month when it’s typical to see 2.35 inches.

Along with drought conditions, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reported Aitkin, Crow Wing, Cass and Wadena counties were under a moderate fire danger rating Sunday, when fires start easily and spread at a moderate rate. Some area water bodies are experiencing low water levels.

What does the temperature outlook look like for the rest of the summer? According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, there is a 32% chance for the average temperature to be higher than 67.5; a 35% chance for the average temperature to be between 65.6 and 67.5; and a 33% chance for the average temperature to be lower than 65.6.

The NOAA reports 2019 was the second warmest year on record in the world. The earth’s global average surface temperature was 1.71 degrees above the 20th century average in 2019. Nine of the 10 warmest years on record have occurred since 2005, it reported.

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