Heavy Rains, June 2-3, 2024

rainfall map
Map of estimated rain ending the morning of June 3, 2024. 
Image credit: National Weather Service, Twin Cities/Chanhassen office

Strong thunderstorms produced pockets of heavy rain Sunday June 2 into the early morning of Monday June 3, 2024. The rains led to at least minor flooding on some streams and rivers.

The thunderstorms formed in an area of increasing moisture (humidity) associated with a slow-moving disturbance. The first storm cell on Sunday afternoon was large, isolated, and moved at just 15-20 mph, focusing on areas south of the Twin Cities, generally from about Redwood Falls to Northfield and Zumbrota.  This cell alone produced rainfall totals of 1 to 3 inches.

Other storms blossomed from the late afternoon into the evening across western and central Minnesota, and by 10 PM, thunderstorms had been crawling repeatedly in swaths near Brainerd, Mora, and Detroit Lakes. 

Later in the night, a more concentrated area of thunderstorms moved into Minnesota from the Dakotas, eventually forming a line that moved from west to east across the southern two-thirds of the state. Throughout the night, thunderstorms were accompanied by vivid lightning and torrential rains. 

Although a couple storms in southern and far western Minnesota did produce quarter-sized hailstones, the main impact was from heavy rains, which fell onto wet and saturated grounds, thanks to a persistently wet spring in Minnesota. Additionally, the thunderstorm rains were not of the steady variety that had soaked the state gently since late March, but instead fell intensely during vigorous downpours. The runoff from the pounding rains led to more stream rises, with flooding reported along parts of the Cannon, Minnesota, and Mississippi rivers. 

Rainfall totals over over three inches were reported by CoCoRaHS or National Weather Service Cooperative observers across many parts of western, central, southern, and eastern Minnesota. Some of the highest totals include 3.77 inches near Cannon City, 3.58 inches near Belle Plaine, 3.53 inches near Pine City, 3.38 inches near Princeton, 3.34 inches near Spicer, and 3.29 inches just south of Detroit Lakes.  


KAB, June 3, 2024

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