It’s been a cold, wet start to spring in Iowa and April wrapped up as the seventh consecutive colder-than-normal month for the state, and May isn’t starting out much better.
State climatologist Harry Hillaker says most Iowans got drenched by rainclouds last month. “April primarily looks to be the 12th wettest April in 142 years of state records,” Hillaker says. “On the temperature end of things, once again, another colder-than-normal month. About a degree-and-a-half below normal so not quite so significant, but the 48th coldest in 142 years.”
A large section of Iowa saw heavy rain showers during the month, especially central, north-central and northeast Iowa, but Hillaker says not everyone was in the same boat.
“A few places largely missed out, especially the far northwest corner of Iowa and the far southwest corner as well, actually below-normal precipitation,” Hillaker says. “They’re still waiting for a good rain in those places.”
After a mostly-dreary week so far, the forecast is brightening for the weekend as Saturday looks to be mostly sunny and warmer, but that pattern likely won’t last, with showers possible on Sunday. “Starting about Wednesday of next week, the first full week of the month, we could see quite a bit of thunderstorm activity back in the state,” Hillaker says. “It looks like that could be pretty significant episode of both rainfall and possibly severe weather.”
There was plenty of severe weather during April, including a bout of thunderstorms on April 27th that spawned a tornado in southeast Iowa that’s blamed in two deaths.
(Reporting by Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)