Map Shows Minnesota at the Center of Extreme Temps
Minnesotans and Wisconsinites might complain about the weather extremes we see, but we also collectively wear our ability to cope like a badge of honor. This year, in particular, has been a wild ride.
From record-breaking cold to begin the year to a generally hot and humid summer, we've been seeing our share of the temperature extremes of the region.
A climatologist by the name of Brian Brettschneider tweeted a map last week, detailing some of those extremes in a profound way.
The map used the "feels like" temperature data from around the United States and Canada to depict the range of extremes in what it has felt like in 2019, spanning from January 1 through July 24.
Those "feels like" temperatures look at wind chill values in the winter (factoring cold and wind), and heat index values in the summer (factoring in heat and humidity), to generate a map that shows Minnesota at the epicenter of the United States when it comes to extreme temps. From the coldest days of this past winter to the hottest days of this summer so far, almost all of Minnesota has seen "feels like" temperature swings between 150 and 160 degrees, with southern Minnesota actually seeing a difference of over 160 degrees. The only area "safe" from the most extreme of extremes was a sliver of the Arrowhead, right next to Lake Superior. Good ol' Gitche Gumee moderating things a little to a range of only 130-140 degrees worth of difference.
Northern Wisconsin was largely safe from the extreme differences, but Southern Wisconsin, much of Iowa, and Northern Illinois were in the swath of the most extreme differences.
Brettschneider specifically called out the biggest ranges of difference in the country, belonging to Litchfield, MN, follwed by Waseca and Fairmont on the list of places with the biggest range of "feels like" temperatures so far this year.
Litchfield saw a staggering 180 degrees of "feels like" range during the data dates, with Willmar seeing 179 degrees of difference, and Fairmont a close 174 degrees of range.
In case your curious, the place with the smallest "feels like" range is in Hawaii, with Honolulu only seeing 34.5 degrees of difference this year. Not surprising, being in a warm climate and completely surrounded by the ocean (which helps regulate temperature swings).