January to May period was the wettest on record

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By Reed Anfinson
Swift County Monitor-News

It has been the wettest January to May period on record for the Benson area with 15.75 inches of precipitation – 6.85 inches above average. The five-month period beat the old record of 15.05 inches set in 1965 by 7 tenths of an inch.

May was the fourth wettest on record with 6.58 inches of rain – 3.43 inches above the average of 3.15 inches. The year 1993 holds the record for May rainfall with 7.25 inches.

Spring’s relentless snow and rain meant one of the latest planting seasons on record for Minnesota farmers. Many saw the late planting dates for corn come and go with fields too wet to work. Some have turned to soybeans, but too many acres are likely to go unplanted in the state.

The Chippewa River remained 4 to 5 feet above average throughout the month as rainfall after rainfall kept it high. Typically, by the middle of May the Chippewa is at 8 to 9 feet, but through the first weeks of the month it remained at 12 to 13 feet. May 23, after three days of rain brought almost 2 inches of new moisture, it reached 14 feet. As of Tuesday morning, it was still just over 12 feet...

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