Although February is the shortest month of the year, it also heralds in a gradual increase in temperature and daylight hours. Some areas may still sometimes see mounds of glittering snow, but other areas gradually begin to change into a comfortable combination of bright sunshine and cool temperatures.
For a significant portion of February, rain, cloud cover, and thaws may continue to be the norm in some other states. Some of the states that receive the most rain in February will be discussed in this article. The National Centres for Environmental Information (NCEI)’s February 2023 statewide precipitation rankings and the NOAA’s 2024 projections were used to create the following list of the states with the highest precipitation in February.
But it’s crucial to remember that the weather might vary from season to season. Local conditions tend to change from year to year, even within states. As a result, the states and areas that receive the most rain in February may vary based on particular weather trends that year.
However, the Climate Prediction Centre (CPC) of NOAA has forecast that precipitation across the Central Plains and the southern United States will likely be far above average this year. Precipitation patterns and timing are critical for maintaining ecosystem components and a range of human activities. Winter precipitation in the form of rain and snow supports agriculture, industry, and a number of other sectors by supplying the local water sources.
States That Get The Most Rain in February California
February can be chilly and bright with a good likelihood of wind, rain, and cloudy skies in the West Coast state of California, in the United States. With an average of 3.64 inches of rainfall, February is usually the wettest month of the year in places like Los Angeles. According to NOAA’s Precipitation projection for 2024, rainfall in February of this year is likewise expected to be much above average, particularly in southern and central California.
Due to an atmospheric river storm, parts of Southern California, including the Los Angeles region, are already seeing extremely heavy rains. Hurricane-force wind gusts caused by the storm have raised the risk of flooding and landslides across the state.
According to some estimates, Nevada is the driest state in the union. The state receives an average of 10.3 inches of precipitation annually; the average in southern Nevada is much lower, at 7.1 inches. Conversely, the average in northeastern Nevada is marginally higher at 12.85 inches. But generally speaking, especially in the higher areas like the Sierra Nevada, Nevada experiences greater precipitation in the winter. Winter storms that begin over the Pacific and are driven eastward by the jet stream are absorbed by the Sierra Nevada mountains.
Compared to other years, February in the state of Nevada had a lot of rain and snowfall last year. This resulted from a series of eleven atmospheric rivers. The state received approximately 1.36 inches of precipitation on average in January and February combined, according to statistics from the National Weather Service. The likelihood of a rainy February for the state is predicted by NOAA once more this year.
In Wisconsin, the month of February usually brings 1.69 inches of rainfall on average. But based on CPC’s forecasts, it’s quite probable that the state will see more precipitation than usual during the first week of February this year. In February of 2023, the state saw a significant quantity of precipitation—roughly 2.06 inches. This broke the previous record for the state’s highest monthly rainfall.
The state had the fifth-wettest February of that year, according to the National Centres for Environmental Information (NCEI). The exceptionally heavy downpour that fell on February 27 brought an end to the unusually wet month. The state saw historic levels of rain on this particular day, particularly in the extreme South. On that particular day, the precipitation levels in Madison and Milwaukee even above the typical monthly rainfall norms for February.
However, snow and ice continue to be the most prevalent precipitation in Wisconsin because the state’s average temperatures in January and February can easily plunge below zero degrees Fahrenheit. The state experiences heavy snowfall in the winter, which adds to its expansive ski area and wintry scenery.
Drought is frequently regarded as a regular and recurrent aspect of Iowa’s climate. The state experiences modest annual precipitation, with an average of roughly 34 inches. February 2023 was an exception to this rule, with the state having one of its wettest winters ever. With the exception of the city of Burlington, which only saw 2/3 inches above normal, the state saw nearly 1.25 to 2.5 inches of precipitation above average, according to the National Weather Service. Again this year, above-average precipitation is predicted for the state in February. The state’s overall drought situation will be improved by this increase in precipitation.
Michigan in February does not regularly get rainfall. However, the state experienced above-average precipitation in February 2023. As Kalamazoo is considered the wettest place in Michigan, this February was the fifth wettest on record there. In addition, Grand Rapids had its eighth-wettest February ever recorded. That year also had two ice storm events in the state on February 22 and February 28. Certain houses were without electricity for nearly eight days due to the freezing rain.
It is not totally certain, though, how much precipitation the state is expected to receive in February this year. In late February, freezing rain is predicted for the state. In the state, roadways and pavements can become extremely dangerous after freezing rain.
In Minnesota, the extreme northwest experiences roughly 18 inches of precipitation annually, while the southwest receives over 32 inches. Due to its closeness to the Gulf of Mexico, the state experiences varying amounts of precipitation. The surge of warm, humid air often benefits areas nearer the Gulf, which results in greater average precipitation levels.
Although Minnesota rarely experiences significant rain in February, over the past 50 years, the effects of climate change have increased the frequency of ice storms and winter rain in the state. The continuous storm activity that occurred in 2023 from December 2022 to February produced previously unheard-of levels of precipitation. The Meteorological Winter of Rochester was the wettest on record, and the second wettest in St. Cloud and the Twin Cities. In 2023, Duluth also saw its third-wettest winter ever recorded. As per the data released by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Centre (CPC), there is a higher probability of above-average precipitation across the Central Plains, which includes sections of Minnesota, this year as well.