Archive for the ‘Weather’ Category

2016 Climate Review

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017

Here are some stats from 2016. The most significant of which was well above normal precipitation during the year, the majority of which fell during the latter half of the summer.

   Averages/extremes to date for the year 2016
 Average temperature     55.4°F
 Average humidity        79%
 Average dewpoint        48.5°F
 Average barometer       29.999 in.
 Average windspeed       4.4 mph
 Average gustspeed       6.9 mph
 Average direction       240° (WSW)
 Rainfall for year       = 46.33 inches (9.75 inches above normal)
 Maximum rain per minute 0.14 in on August 25 at 00:49
 Maximum temperature     92.5°F on July 24 
 Minimum temperature     -12.9°F on December 19
 Maximum humidity        = 99% on day 06 at time 11:04 month 10
 Minimum humidity        = 24% on day 18 at time 13:52 month 4
 Maximum dewpoint        = 85.8°F on day 24 at time 15:41 month 7
 Minimum dewpoint        = -7.6°F on day 18 at time 4:11 month 1
 Maximum pressure        = 30.672  in. on day 19 at time 09:48 month 2
 Minimum pressure        = 29.168  in. on day 31 at time 00:12 month 11
 Maximum windspeed       31.1 mph from 317°( NW) on day 02 at time 12:32 month 4
 Maximum gust speed      49.5 mph from 240°(WSW) on day 19 at time 14:10 month 2
 Maximum heat index      124.0°F on day 24 at time 15:41 month 7
 Total Growing T-Sum= 8139.5°F
 Growing degrees days :950.7 GDD
 Corn growing degrees days :5325.5 GDD
 Total windrun = 35175.8miles

2016 Precipitation

A Wet 2016 Meteorological Summer

Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

After a somewhat dry start to June, the remainder of the meteorological summer (June-August) produced well above normal precipitation. Total rainfall for the period was a whopping 23.44 inches(!), normal for the summer is 11.90 inches.

February and Winter 2015 Climate Stats

Sunday, March 1st, 2015

February Climate Datacardinal

Average temperature     = 16.9°F
Average humidity        = 78%
Average dewpoint        = 11.2°F
Average barometer       = 30.223 in.
Average windspeed       = 5.4 mph
Average gustspeed       = 7.9 mph
Average direction       = 301° (WNW)
Precipitation (rain/melted snow) for month      = 17.4 inches
Total Snowfall = 15.8 inches
Days with >= 1 inch snow on ground = 28 (every day in Feb)

Maximum temperature     = 42.3°F on Feb  08 at time 11:57 AM
Minimum temperature     = -11.2°F on Feb 27 at time 06:28 AM
Maximum humidity        = 98% on day 01 at time 10:06
Minimum humidity        = 46% on day 16 at time 16:29
Maximum dewpoint        = 37.8°F on day 07 at time 20:02
Minimum dewpoint        = -14.9°F on day 27 at time 6:28
Maximum pressure        = 30.81 in. on day 23 at time 08:44
Minimum pressure        = 29.59 in. on day 08 at time 02:31
Maximum windspeed       = 26 mph from 360°( N ) on day 14 at time 10:13
Maximum gust speed      = 43 mph from 315°( NW) on day 14 at time 08:56

Avg daily max temp :25.0°F
Avg daily min temp :6.3°F
Total windrun = 3605.2miles

Winter 2015

Average temperature = 24.3º
Maximum temperature = 51.6º on 12/26/14
Minimum temperature = -11.2º on 2/27/15
Total Precipitation = 4.33 inches
Total Snowfall = 25.3 inches
Days with measurable snowfall (>T) = 17
Greatest 24 hr snowfall = 5.8 inches on 2/2/15
Days with 1 inch or more snow depth = 41 (28 of which were in February)


Note: Precipitation values are recorded from a manual rain gauge. Water equivalent of snowfall is determined by melting the snowfall collected in the manual gauge.


2014 Weather Year in Review

Saturday, January 10th, 2015

Here are some weather highlights from Goose Lake Weather for 2014.

By the numbers:

Average temperature     49.3°F
Total precipitation (rain and water equivalent of melted snow)      36.90 inches
Total Snowfall                      57.7 inches
Maximum temperature     90.6°F on May 21 at 15:57
Minimum temperature     -19.7°F on Feb 11 at 06:57
Maximum humidity        100% on June 11 at 03:42
Minimum humidity         20% on Nov 30 at 23:35
Maximum dewpoint        83.2°F on Aug 25 at 13:0
Minimum dewpoint         -24.0°F on Feb 11 at 6:57
Maximum pressure        30.699  in. on Jan 30 at time 10:09
Minimum pressure       29.078  in. on Nov 24 at time 13:41
Maximum sustained windspeed       40.3 mph from 315°( NW) on Jun 30 at time 21:58
Maximum gust speed      57.5 mph from 315°( NW) on Jun 30 at  21:58
Maximum heat index      113.3°F on Aug 25 at time 13:24
Total windrun = 39678.0  miles

The most notable event included the cold and very snowy winter. I recorded 67 days with 1 inch or more of snow on theSnow depth
ground at the morning observation time. The greatest 24 hr snowfall was 6.3 inches on Feb 18th. The greatest snow depth on a given day was 16.0 inches, also recorded on Feb 18th. Wind chills dipped well below zero on many occasions and drifting snow was common. The snowblower (and myself) got a workout during the winter!



Tree damage from derecho June 30, 2014.

Tree damage from derecho June 30, 2014.

Aside from the winter, the other notable event for our backyard weather station was a line of severe storms, known as a derecho, that raced through our area on the evening of June 30th. My main anemometer recorded a peak gust of 58 mph and surprisingly, my auxiliary/backup anemometer located at about 20 feet AGL recorded a gust of 61 mph. We experienced tree damage in our backyard and there was widespread tree damage throughout the area. Utility crews and tree cutting services were busy for many weeks (and months) after the storms. See this excellent review of the derecho event from the National Weather Service Chicago Office.

Funnel cloud over Gardner, IL 8/6/2014

Friday, August 8th, 2014

Funnel clouds had been sighted over parts of northern Illinois during early August. This picture of a funnel over Gardner, IL was sent to us from Don Berglund. Thanks Don!

Funnel Cloud over Gardner, IL. Picture courtesy Don Berglund used with permission.

Funnel Cloud over Gardner, IL. Picture courtesy Don Berglund used with permission.

July 2013 Climate Sumary

Sunday, August 4th, 2013

After abundant precipitation in late winter and throughout the spring, the rainfall diminished significantly in July. Temperatures were below normal as well. Here are some stats for July:


Average temperature     = 72.2°F
Average humidity        = 80%
Average dewpoint        = 65.0°F
Average barometer       = 29.998 in.
Average windspeed       = 2.8 mph
Average gustspeed       = 4.7 mph
Average direction       = 247° (WSW)
Rainfall for month      = 1.36 in.
Maximum rain per minute = 0.020 in on day 03 at time 07:03
Maximum temperature     = 94.2°F on day 19 at time 15:19
Minimum temperature     = 49.5°F on day 29 at time 05:59
Maximum humidity        = 98% on day 31 at time 21:53
Minimum humidity        = 31% on day 12 at time 12:19
Maximum dewpoint        = 80.6°F on day 18 at time 09:36
Minimum dewpoint        = 45.5°F on day 12 at time 12:18
Maximum pressure        = 30.29 in. on day 17 at time 08:23
Minimum pressure        = 29.66 in. on day 23 at time 02:00
Maximum windspeed       = 20 mph from 315°( NW) on day 23 at time 00:01
Maximum gust speed      = 28 mph from 315°( NW) on day 22 at time 23:59
Maximum heat index      = 112.5°F on day 18 at time 14:34
Avg daily max temp :81.9°F
Avg daily min temp :62.2°F
Total windrun = 2095.9miles

2012 Climate Summary

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

The 2012 year will be remembered for abnormal warmth and below normal precipitation.


I recorded a total of 30.59 inches of precipitation for the year (rain and melted snow water equivalent). The normal is 36.58 inches*. The following graph shows 2012 monthly precip values in blue and normal values in red.

GooseLakeWeather Precip 2012

In May, strong thunderstorms dumped over 3 inches of rain in about a 3hr period overnight on May 6/7th.  Spring rains really did not materialize with rainfall before normal during the critical months of March and April. November saw the least amount of precipitation with only 0.89 inch of rain and a trace of snow. Snowfall in December 2012 was well below normal with only a mere 1.0 inch recorded, making it the second least snowiest December in my 15 years of record.


Temperatures were well above average. The month of March was particularly noteworthy with daytime highs in the 80s recorded on nine days. The maximum temperature during the month of March was 84.9 on March 21. The abnormal warmth caused many fruit trees and other berries to bloom far earlier than normal. Unfortunately, April experienced a normal freeze which killed the sensitive Peach blossoms in our backyard and did damage to other orchard crops elsewhere.

In July I recorded my first 100 degree+ day in the 15 years I’ve been recording data with a monthly high and new backyard weather record of 102.1 degrees on July 7. The combination of hot days and low humidity resulted in high rates of evapotranspiration(ET) with daily ET rates averaging around 0.25 inch. The below normal precipitation combined with high temperatures and corresponding ET values increased the severity of the ongoing drought across the area.



Maximum Temperature 102.1°  on July 7
Minimum Temperature 4.9°  on Jan 19
Average Temperature 54.4°
Maximum Heat Index 120.0°  on July 6
Maximum Dewpoint 81.6° on July 2
Minimum Dewpoint -3.1°  on Jan 19
Maximum Wind Gust 53 mph on Nov 11
Maximum Pressure 30.569 in on Nov 1
Minimum Pressure 29.033 in Dec 1
Total Precipitation 30.59 inches (manual rain gauge)
Maximum Rain Rate 0.25 inch/minute on May 7 at 0200 AM.

*normal value from the CoCoRaHS PRISM Portal project

2012 Precipitation Deficit Continues

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Despite some promising rains in October, our precipitation deficit continues. Total precipitation (rain/melted snow) so far this year has been 28.77 inches. Last year at this time was 43.88 inches. Normal is 36.58 inches. Precipitation this month (Nov) has amounted to only 0.89 inch thus far.

October 2012 Summary

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

October was the first month since May in which I recorded above normal precipitation. We also had a trace of sleet during the month. Here are some stats for the month:

 Averages\Extremes for the month of October 2012

 Average temperature     = 51.2°F
 Average humidity        = 75%
 Average dewpoint        = 42.7°F
 Average barometer       = 29.949 in.
 Average windspeed       = 6.7 mph
 Average gustspeed       = 9.9 mph
 Average direction       = 260° ( W )
 Rainfall for month      = 3.38 in.
 Maximum rain per minute = 0.040 in on day 17 at time 20:52
 Maximum temperature     = 79.0°F on day 24 at time 14:07
 Minimum temperature     = 30.8°F on day 31 at time 07:47
 Maximum humidity        = 98% on day 23 at time 04:29
 Minimum humidity        = 34% on day 11 at time 15:51
 Maximum dewpoint        = 68.0°F on day 23 at time 12:17
 Minimum dewpoint        = 22.6°F on day 31 at time 22:24
 Maximum pressure        = 30.43 in. on day 12 at time 11:16
 Minimum pressure        = 29.25 in. on day 17 at time 20:16
 Maximum windspeed       = 26 mph from 293°(WNW) on day 14 at time 17:13
 Maximum gust speed      = 41 mph from 248°(WSW) on day 14 at time 15:49
 Maximum heat index      = 81.3°F on day 24 at time 14:06
 Avg daily max temp :61.7°F
 Avg daily min temp :41.2°F
 Total windrun = 4993.7miles

Soil Moisture Recharge?

Saturday, October 27th, 2012
Watermark soil moisture sensor

Watermark soil moisture sensor

After a long period this past summer of little precipitation, the month of October has provided some regular intervals of modest rainfall. This is helping to recharge the depleted soil moisture. I have a soil temp/moisture station with soil moisture sensors buried at 4, 12, 24, and 36 inch depths paired with soil temperature sensors near our garden. The Watermark® Soil Moisture Sensor is an indirect, calibrated method of measuring soil water content. It is an electrical resistance type sensor. The Soil Moisture/Temperature Station converts the electrical resistance reading from the sensor into a calibrated reading of centibars of soil water suction with a range from 0 to 200 centibars where zero is saturated and 200 is completely dry. I have daily readings available on my Garden Weather page.

One of the problems when “planting” the sensors is ensuring that the sensor makes a good contact with the surrounding soil. I suspect that with our very clayey soils in this recent drought that the soil surrounding the 4 inch depth moisture sensor may have shrunk, thereby resulting in higher readings from that sensor than were present. Although given the extended dry period, it may not have been that far off from reality. Essentially, the sensor maxed out at the driest 200 cb reading back in early June and has not changed until the last 2 days.  This may indicate (hopefully) that we are finally starting to see some recharge of soil moisture.

Soil Temperature/Moisture Station.

We still have a way to go to make up for the soil moisture deficit but perhaps this winter will provide some beneficial snow that can be very efficient at soil moisture recharge.

Stay tuned…


4 inch Soil Moisture Plot

4 inch Soil Moisture Plot. Zero indicates saturated soil and 200 is dry.