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November weather offered a little of everything

12/4/2013

By MIKE CORN

mcorn@dailynews.net

November was a mishmash of all things weather, perhaps cooler and drier than normal.

Just not everywhere.

But that's the way the year has gone, and there doesn't seem to be any indication the pattern is changing -- except for the prospects for a developing El Nino. That's not supposed to happen before early next year, however.

If that happens, big changes could be in store for next year.

This year's already been problematic enough, with severe drought early on and then big late-summer rains.

But even those drought-dousing rains didn't fall everywhere. And without the heavy downpours, conditions would remain dire.

In Sharon Springs, for example, November's 0.15 of an inch boosted the 11-month total to 15.62 inches. But heavy rains in August and October contributed nearly 8 inches of that total.

Even Hays, where precipitation totals are just slightly below normal, conditions haven't improved much.

Rainfall in Hays in November was ahead of normal.

At the Kansas State University Agricultural Research Center at the south edge of the city, 1.16 inches of precipitation fell. That's a third of an inch above normal, pushing the annual total to 21.48 inches. That total, however, is 0.61 of an inch below normal.

In Goodland, rainfall last month amounted to just 0.17 of an inch at the National Weather Service office, well below the normal of 0.71 of an inch.

Despite a September rainfall total of 6.49 inches, Goodland's still 2.51 inches below normal for the year.

Hill City's is worse shape, with just 17.65 inches of precipitation, leaving it 4.67 inches below normal.

All that pales in comparison to rainfall totals at Kanopolis Reservoir, where the total so far this year is 41.33 inches. The 12-month average is less than 30 inches.

While rainfall wasn't abundant in November, conditions were slightly cooler than normal.

At Hays, the average temperature was 39.9 degrees, slightly less than 2 degrees below normal. Daytime highs were nearly 2 degrees below normal as well.

All that's reflected in the three snowfall reports in November, only one of which was measurable.

With just 0.1 of an inch of snow in November, Hays fell 1.61 inches below normal as far as snow is concerned.

Goodland didn't do much better, with less than a third of an inch falling, well below the normal of 4.6 inches.

Colby received only a trace in November.

Precipitation totals for northwest Kansas locations for November and the year are:

* Alton: 1.35 inches in November and 20.63 inches so far this year.

* Phillipsburg: 0.85 of an inch; 15.99 inches.

* Plainville: 1.18 inches; 21.16 inches.

* Smith Center: 1.29 inches; 23.3.

* Ness City: 1.23 inches; 13.73 inches.

* Healy: 0.51 of an inch; 20.71 inches.

* WaKeeney: 0.85 of an inch; 16.57 inches.

* Russell: 1.17 inches; 21.5 inches.

* Hoxie: 0.46 of an inch; 19.15 inches.

* Norton Dam: 0.64 of an inch; 20.85 inches.

* Oakley: 0.26 of an inch; 21.1 inches.

* Oberlin: 0.5 of an inch; 15.62 inches.

* Sharon Springs: 0.15 of an inch; 14.13 inches.