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Weather Wise: Wild Weather in Montana

Weather Wise: Wild Weather
Posted at 9:00 PM, Jun 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-29 14:33:02-04

Mark Twain once said, “If you don't like the weather, wait 5 minutes and it will change.” The famed humorist was speaking about New England weather, but one can wonder what he would say if he were in Montana over the last five weeks.

It's been a wild few weeks here in Montana. As of June 28, there is near record heat that will bake the treasure state again. The brutal heat coming just two weeks after one of the hottest days ever occurred on June 14, when some places had temperatures that challenged their hottest temperature ever recorded.

That heat contributed to dangerous fire weather conditions and a rash of early-season fires blew up. Including the Deep Creek Canyon Fire and the Robertson Draw Fire, burning nearly 35 thousand acres.

Just before that heat, severe thunderstorms ripped across the state. Lightning struck a transformer in Helena and the entire surrounding area was without power for hours. Great Falls got hit with a tremendous microburst. A few days before that, a tornado formed out in Eastern Montana. Thunderstorms there produced up to 4 inches of rain and flash flooding near Wolf Point.

Somehow memorial day weekend weather was nearly perfect when it usually rains and snows most of the weekend.

Although speaking of snow, a record-breaking snowstorm hit parts of Montana just before Memorial Day weekend. Up to 2 feet of snow fell and record cold spread all across the treasure state, which took its toll on people's gardens and the early season foliage.

It has certainly been a meteorological year of renown, with talk of such events gracing the dinner tables across Big Sky County. As for the July outlook, well to quote Twain again, “It is best to read the weather forecast before we pray for rain.”