St. Paul Office:
201 5th Avenue South West
New Brighton, MN 55112
1514 Black Oaks Place N.
Plymouth, MN 55447
201 5th Avenue South West
New Brighton, MN 55112
1514 Black Oaks Place N.
Plymouth, MN 55447
News & Articles – Minnesota
Minnesota Profile: ColdBig Chill Minnesota's reputation for bone-chilling weather began when soldiers at Fort Snelling started measuring and recording temperatures in 1819. In letters home they no doubt spoke of bitterly cold weather. In modern times, media often cite Embarrass or Tower as the coldest places in the lower 48 on a particular day.
Cold Reality International Falls is the coldest major National Weather Service station outside Alaska. The city has an average annual temperature of only 37.5 F. On average the thermometer there dips to zero or below 64 days each winter. In Roseau, also near the Canadian border, the average January temperature is almost a degree below zero (minus 0.7 F). The Twin Cities is the coldest major population center in the United States (45.4 F average annual), and one of the coldest in the world.
Why So Cold? Minnesota's relatively high latitude leads to long winter nights and only a glancing blow of sunlight during winter days. In the center of the continent, the state is far from the temperature-moderating influence of oceans, and has no natural barriers to deflect invasions of arctic air from the north or northwest.
How Cold Can It Get? Feb. 2, 1996, just south of Tower in St. Louis County, a volunteer observer for the National Weather Service recorded an air temperature of minus 60 F-the coldest official measurement ever made in Minnesota. Feb. 8, 1899, Roseau had an afternoon high of minus 39 F. This record-low daily high temperature occurred amid one of the longest, coldest spells in Minnesota's climate history.
Communities such as Roseau and International Falls claim cold-weather bragging rights because of their northern latitudes. Rival cold spots in Embarrass and Tower have monitoring stations in low-lying basins, which collect cold, dense air.
Wind Factor The rate of heat loss from exposed skin depends on the combined impact of air temperature and wind. A "feels like" temperature calculation, called wind chill, indicates the atmosphere's cooling power. On Jan. 9 and 10, 1982, some northern Minnesota communities reported air temperatures near minus 30 F and wind speeds approaching 40 miles per hour. This bitter combination produced wind chills near minus 70 F. The formula in use at that time (it was changed in 2001) computed the wind chill to be an astounding minus 100 F.
Minneapolis-Coldest of the Largest Cities in WinterOf the 50+ largest cities in United States, Minneapolis, Minnesota has the coldest winter weather, based on average daily temperatures. It's the only American city that normally remains well below freezing throughout the day during December, January and February.
The extreme winter weather at Minneapolis covers the entire metropolitan area, taking in the adjoining city of St. Paul, where the temperature is no warmer. These rankings of coldest cities use long-term temperature averages, based on weather data collected from 1981 to 2010 for the NOAA's National Climatic Data Center.
The major cities included in the weather rankings represent the 51 metropolitan areas in the United States with the most people, all those with over one million residents in 2010, according to the US Census Bureau. A complete list of America's 51 largest urban centers is available here.
Mean daily temperatures for 15 US cities are typically at or below freezing (32°F) in winter.
US cities with the lowest normal daily mean temperatures in December, January and February City Daily Winter Mean in Farenhiet
- Minneapolis, Minnesota 19
- Milwaukee, Wisconsin 25
- Chicago, Illinois 26
- Rochester, New York 27
- Buffalo, New York 27
- Detroit, Michigan 28
- Hartford, Connecticut 29
- Cleveland, Ohio 30
- Indianapolis, Indiana 31
- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 31
- Salt Lake City, Utah 31
- Denver, Colorado 31
- Providence, Rhode Island 32
- Boston, Massachusetts 32
- Columbus, Ohio 32
These big American cities have temperatures that on an average winter's day don't get above 40°F. US cities with the lowest normal daily maximum temperatures in December, January and February: City Average Winter High
- Minneapolis, Minnesota 27
- Milwaukee, Wisconsin 31
- Buffalo, New York 34
- Chicago, Illinois 34
- Rochester, New York 34
- Detroit, Michigan 34
- Cleveland, Ohio 37
- Hartford, Connecticut 38
- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 38
- Indianapolis, Indiana 38
- Boston, Massachusetts 39
- Columbus, Ohio 39
- Salt Lake City, Utah 39
Temperatures drop below 25°F (-3.9°C) in these major US cities during a typical winter night. US cities with the lowest normal daily minimum temperatures in December, January and February City Average Winter Low
- Minneapolis, Minnesota 11
- Denver, Colorado 18
- Milwaukee, Wisconsin 18
- Chicago, Illinois 19
- Rochester, New York 20
- Buffalo, New York 21
- Hartford, Connecticut 21
- Detroit, Michigan 21
- Indianapolis, Indiana 23
- Salt Lake City, Utah 23
- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 23
- Providence, Rhode Island 24
- Cleveland, Ohio 24
- Cincinnati, Ohio 24
History, Geography & ClimateHistory Minnesota became a state in 1858; the 32nd state in the union. People first came to Minnesota during the last ice age. They probably followed herds of large game into this area. Some of those early Minnesota people carved pictures of humans, animals and weapons into rocks. Some of these carvings, called “petroglyphs,” may be 5,000 years old – and many are still visible today in Minnesota’s state parks, such as Jeffers Petroglyphs near Comfrey and Windom. Ancient burial mounds and unearthed objects like spear points are evidence that people lived here ages ago.
The Dakota and Ojibwe (also called Chippewa or Anishinabe) Indians lived in Minnesota when the first Europeans arrived. Many Dakota, Ojibwe and other American Indians live in Minnesota today.
In the late 1600s, French explorers led an expedition into Minnesota, and were soon followed by fur traders for French, and then British companies, who come for beaver pelts to make hats in Europe.
In 1825, Fort Snelling became the first permanent European-American settlement. This site is now a state historic site. The early settlers in the territory were primarily Americans from the East Coast. By the 1860s large numbers of immigrants, especially Germans and Scandinavians, came to Minnesota.
- Length: Slightly over 400 miles
- Width: 200-350 miles
- Land area: 83,574 square miles
- Water area: 7,326 square miles
- Mean Elevation: 1,200 feet above sea level
- Highest point: 2,301 feet at Eagle Mountain
- Lowest point: 602 feet at Lake Superior shore
- Location: upper Midwest, north central United States. Minnesota is bordered by Canada on the north; Iowa on the south; Lake Superior and Wisconsin on the east; and North and South Dakota on the west.
- Longitude: 89° 34'W to 97° 12'W
- Latitude: 43° 34'N to 49° 23'N
- 11,842 lakes (more than 10 acres)
- 69,200 miles of rivers and streams
- 680 miles of the Mississippi River's 2,552 total miles flow through Minnesota. Minnesota borders Lake Superior, which is the world's largest freshwater lake. Lake Superior is at the end of the St. Lawrence Seaway, which brings boats from around the world to the port of Duluth, Minnesota. Minnesota’s rivers and streams flow in three directions: north to Hudson Bay in Canada, east to the Atlantic Ocean and south to the Gulf of Mexico.
- Major waterfalls
- Big Falls, Pigeon River
- Caribou Falls, Caribou River
- High Falls, Baptism River
- Manitou Falls, Manitou River
- Minneopa Falls, Minneopa River
- Minnehaha Falls, Minnehaha Creek
- Gooseberry Falls, Gooseberry River
- Capital: St. Paul
- Total population: 5 million
- 11.8% of Minnesotans are African American, Asian, Hispanic, American Indian or another non-white ethnicity.
- Five largest cities
- Minneapolis: (Largest city in Minnesota) 387,711
- St. Paul: (Capital of Minnesota) 287,385
- Minneapolis and St. Paul together are known as the "Twin Cities"
- Rochester: (Home of Mayo Clinic) 90,515
- Duluth: (Major shipping port on Lake Superior) 85,889
- Bloomington: (Home of Mall of America) 84,347
- (Minnesota State Demographic Center, 2005 estimates)
The weather changes often in Minnesota! Each season comes with its own pleasures. Spring brings warming temperatures and a major "green-up" as trees grow leaves and flowers and vegetation spring to life.
Summer is sunny and pleasant. It is common to have several days as warm as 90 degrees Fahrenheit (and a few warmer).
In the fall, the trees turn brilliant colors as the days cool down. "Fall colors" are a major attraction to Minnesota late August – October. You can see fall color reports (link) during this time period on this site.
Minnesota is known for its cold winters... but we just bundle up and go out and play in the snow. Temperatures are usually slightly warmer south of the Twin Cities, and cooler in northern parts of the state. There is also typically less snow in southern Minnesota and more in northern Minnesota, especially in the northeast inland from Lake Superior.
Twin Cities average temperatures
- Jan. 31 - 21 F/1 F (High/Low)
- Apr. 30 - 62 F/41F (High/Low)
- July 31 - 83 F/60 F (High/Low)
- Sept. 30 - 65 F/42 F (High/Low)
- Average annual snowfall: 53 -70 inches
- 19-34 inches (rainfall and water equivalent of snow)