Weather Forecast


Rain, come again: The weather has been nothing to scoff at until it starts to turn bad

North Dakota Game and Fish Department Courtesy Photo The temperatures outside are unbelievable, but rain needs to be on the horizon soon or it's going to be a long summer.

There's a saying "More is better."

There's also a nursery rhyme of "Rain, rain go away come again another day."

Well, let's hope that isn't the case, especially here.

We need more -- rain -- and plenty of it.

Due to the lack of snowfall this winter, the ground this spring has been dry and a little dusty.

There was a glimmer of hope last week when it rained most of Friday and part of Saturday, but there's no way that is enough.

It doesn't matter who I talk to on the phone, whether it's about outdoors or sports, we always end up talking about the weather. Everyone had the same response, "We could really use some rain." Isn't that the truth.

The lack of moisture caused wildfires around Dickinson and it seemed like there was a fire breaking out every single day for a week straight in late March. That's a tough pill to swallow for anyone with land, because the thought of their field catching on fire puts them into a financial bind.

The total rainfall tallied by the North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network for the month of April was 1.89 inches and May is currently at .44 inches.

As of Friday, Stark County and all of the surround counties with the exception of Mercer has fire bans in effect. Is there an end in sight for these fire bans, if we don't get rain then no.

The scenario I'm dreading is getting little rain before July 4. If we don't get any rain, people may not be able to shoot off fireworks and that will leave many unhappy.

It would be the second time that I could remember that shooting fireworks wasn't allowed. The first was when I was about 12 years old and I was out at my grandpa's farm in Buffalo County, S.D. His farm is about 30 miles away from Fort Thompson, which sits along the Missouri River.

Every summer from when I was 9 to 18, I went back to help my grandma and grandpa on their farm for the summer. That summer there was virtually no rainfall and shooting fireworks was out of the question. It was so dry that during that summer we had to leave the pickup on the side of the road to go and walk across the field to check cattle, because we could run the risk of starting a fire.

Do I want that to happen again this year? Of course not, but it's always a thought that creeps in the back of my mind when I'm driving down the road and I don't see a cloud in sight.

I sat in the office throughout March and April waiting for something to happen. Everyone in the office could see the look of desperation on my face. Even when it would sprinkle for five minutes, I was like a kid on Christmas morning.

If these numbers aren't startling enough, the NDAWN had Dickinson's average temperature in February at 34.3 degrees. Then like a when I left the door open during the winter my dad would yell, "We aren't heating the outside." Apparently someone was because the temperature increased by 25.5 degrees in March.

The temperature stayed nearly the same from March to April with only a .7 degree increase. The current average temperature of the May is 64.8 degrees.

Perhaps the cold will work in the reverse effect by everyone opening up their doors when the air conditioner is on. It probably won't work like that, but it's always a thought.

The rain doesn't have to come in droves, but it would be nice to have at least some rain at least once a week.

McGregor is the outdoors reporter for The Dickinson Press and he can be contacted at