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Iowa Preliminary Weather Summary
By: Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist - 08/11/2020

Cooler conditions greeted Iowa through the first full week of August with negative temperature departures of up to eight degrees reported across the southern part of the state. Iowa's average temperature was 69.4 degrees, 2.7 degree below normal. Dryness persisted statewide though west-central Iowa, which is now experiencing extreme drought, did receive much needed rainfall. Portions of northwestern Iowa had precipitation deficits slightly over an inch.

Scattered showers and a few thunderstorms continued to push through southern Iowa into Sunday (2nd) afternoon as skies cleared north to south with a northerly wind. Where rain fell, totals were generally under a few tenths of inch, though some stations reported higher totals where storms lingered; Chariton (Lucas County) reported 1.05 inches. High temperatures were comfortable and cooler than average, generally in the mid to upper 70s. Overnight lows into Monday (3rd) were well below normal statewide with the coldest readings across northern Iowa, where mid 40s were reported. Temperatures across the rest of Iowa were in the 50s with the statewide average low of 54 degrees, nine degrees cooler than normal. High pressure dominated the pattern through the day into Tuesday (4th) as temperatures remained unseasonably cool, in the low to mid 70s on both days. A small disturbance pushed into western Iowa during the night into early Wednesday (5th) morning before bringing light, but measurable, rainfall before dissipating as it moved into central Iowa. Rainfall was under 0.20 inch for a majority of the stations though gauges in northwest Iowa collected higher amounts; a station in Le Mars (Plymouth County) reported 0.24 inch while Denison (Crawford County) observed 0.44 inch. Partly to mostly cloudy skies persisted as daytimes highs remained in the 70s with a southerly wind.

Widely scattered thunderstorms formed in western Iowa early Thursday (6th) morning and persisted through the afternoon hours. Some storms in central Iowa turned severe with a report of 1.50 inch hail in Coon Rapids (Carroll County). Rain totals were highest in central Iowa with reports between 0.20 inch to 0.50 inch. Heavier rainfall was also observed in west-central Iowa from stronger thunderstorms with seven stations reporting over an inch; Perry (Dallas County) reported 1.00 inch while Madrid (Boone County) observed 1.59 inches. Morning temperatures on Friday (7th) ranged from the upper 60s northwest to low 60s southeast with a light southerly wind. Partly cloudy skies persisted through the afternoon with near-seasonal highs in the low 80s. Saturday (8th) was a warm and dry day across the state with highs reaching in the upper 80s and low 90s; the statewide average high was 88 degrees, four degrees above normal. A line of strong thunderstorms pushed into western Iowa during the early morning hours on Sunday (9th) ahead of a warm front. Additional storms fired across southwestern Iowa and continued to push towards central Iowa. Rain totals were highest across the state's northwest quadrant and ranged from 0.01 inch in Ames (Story County) to 0.80 inch in Remsen (Plymouth County).

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at several stations to 1.60 inches in Madrid (Boone County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.23 inch while the normal is 0.98 inch. Waterloo Municipal Airport (Black Hawk County) reported the week's high temperature of 93 degrees on the 8th, 10 degrees above normal. Mason City Municipal Airport (Cerro Gordo County) reported the week's low temperature of 43 degrees on the 4th, 17 degrees below normal.


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