All of Allamakee County classified under Extreme Drought ...

The latest U.S. Drought Monitor pictured above for the state of Iowa released by the National Weather Service Thursday, August 31 shows all of Allamakee County, and a majority of northeast Iowa, in the grips of Extreme Drought (as indicated with the red color in the map above). Further information compiled by the National Weather Service notes that the rainfall experienced for the week prior to that August 31 Drought Monitor was no greater than four-tenths (.40) of an inch in the northeast Iowa area, with the average rainfall during that time frame having previously been reported at nine-tenths (.90) of an inch. As a result, the Extreme Drought grew from covering just 5.28% of the state of Iowa as of August 22, to now 17.59% as of the end of August, with most of that Extreme Drought growth coming in the northeast Iowa area.

Information compiled and released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Integrated Drought Information System indicates that the month of July was the 53rd driest July on record for Allamakee County from over the past 129 years, with rainfall being seventh-tenths (.70) of an inch below normal rainfall for the month of July. A broader look at that information for the year 2023 thus far indicates that January through July of this year ranks as the 25th driest year thus far in Allamakee County during that same 129-year period, with rainfall amounts being 3.04 inches lower than normal for that seventh-month span.

That information, dating back to 1895, shows that this year is the first year Allamakee County has been classified under Extreme Drought conditions since late 2003/early 2004 and is the first year since September 1989 that 100% of Allamakee County has been covered with Extreme Drought conditions, coming close in April 2004 at 97.5%. Allamakee County has experienced other stretches of 100% Extreme Drought nearly a dozen additional times since 1895, including June-October 1988, January-March 1977, October-December 1966, nearly a year’s worth of time from June 1963-April 1964, May 1958-January 1959, September 1939-May 1940, April-July 1934, July-August 1931 (during the Dust Bowl era), May 1925, September 1910-March 1911 and October-November 1895.