The big theme in the weather in the year that just ended was “cooler and wetter” according to State Climatologist Harry Hillaker. He says there were a lot of cold months, with the coolest July on record, 10th coolest August and third coolest October. November was a top ten in the other direction, as it was the fourth warmest on record.
Overall the year will end up about 1.1 degrees below normal in temperatures, making it the 26th coolest on the record books. Hillaker says the year continued a string of wet ones for the state. Hillaker say the statewide average of precipitation was 39.1 inches, which is about 5.8 inches above normal and will be the 12th wettest year on record.
It follows two other wet years as 2008 was the third wettest and 2007 was the fourth wettest on record. Hillaker says October was the month the had the biggest impact. He says it was the wettest October in over 100 years and the coolest in over 80 years and that combination produced the slowest harvest we had in Iowa since 1951. Hillaker says there are still crops remaining in the field because of the weather in October. November was a drier month, but then December ended up the year as the second snowiest month on record.