This report describes the typical weather at the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States) weather station over the course of an average January. It is based on the historical records from 1974 to 2012. Earlier records are either unavailable or unreliable.
Minneapolis, Minnesota has a humid continental climate with hot summers and no dry season. The area within 25 mi of this station is covered by croplands (67%), built-up areas (18%), forests (9%), and lakes and rivers (5%).
The month of January is characterized by essentially constant daily high temperatures, with daily highs around 23°F throughout the month, exceeding 38°F or dropping below 4°F only one day in ten.
Over the course of January, the length of the day is gradually increasing. From the start to the end of the month, the length of the day increases by 53 minutes, implying an average day-over-day increase of 1.7 minutes.
The shortest day of the month is January 1 with 8:52 hours of daylight; the longest day is January 31 with 9:45 hours of daylight.
The earliest sunrise is at 7:34am on January 31; the latest sunset is at 5:19pm on January 31; the latest sunrise is at 7:51am on January 3; the earliest sunset is at 4:42pm on January 1.
Daylight savings time is observed in 2012 but it neither starts nor ends in January, so the entire month is in standard time.
The median cloud cover ranges from 85% (mostly cloudy) to 91% (mostly cloudy). The trend is for the sky to be clearing with the median cloud cover decreasing by 5% from the start to the end of the month.
On January 16, a representative day, the sky is clear or mostly clear 33% of the time, partly cloudy 10% of the time, and mostly cloudy or overcast 57% of the time.
The probability that precipitation will be observed at this location varies throughout the month. Precipitation is most likely around January 3, occurring in 60% of days. Precipitation is least likely around January 31, occurring in 55% of days.
Throughout January, the most common forms of precipitation are light snow and moderate snow.
Light snow is the most severe precipitation observed during 73% of those days with precipitation. It is most likely around January 3, when it is observed during 44% of all days.
Moderate snow is the most severe precipitation observed during 16% of those days with precipitation. It is most likely around January 1, when it is observed during 10% of all days.
The likelihood of snow falling is highest around January 5, occurring in 55% of days.
Accumulation at this location in January is very likely. The chances of there being snow on the ground are highest around January 30, occurring 91% of the time.
The snow is typically at its deepest on January 29, with a median depth of 7.7"; the depth exceeds 13.8" only one year out of ten.
The relative humidity typically ranges from 58% (mildly humid) to 85% (humid) over the course of a typical January, rarely dropping below 43% (comfortable) and reaching as high as 97% (very humid).
The air is driest around January 31, at which time the relative humidity drops below 67% (mildly humid) three days out of four; it is most humid around January 1, rising above 79% (humid) three days out of four.
Dew point is often a better measure of how comfortable a person will find the weather than relative humidity because it more directly relates to whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid.
Over the course of a typical January, the dew point typically varies from -0°F (dry) to 16°F (dry) and is rarely below -21°F (dry) or above 31°F (dry).
Over the course of January typical wind speeds vary from 3 mph to 16 mph (light air to moderate breeze), rarely exceeding 23 mph (fresh breeze).
The highest average wind speed of 10 mph (gentle breeze) occurs around January 18, at which time the average daily maximum wind speed is 16 mph (moderate breeze).
The lowest average wind speed of 10 mph (gentle breeze) occurs around January 30, at which time the average daily maximum wind speed is 15 mph (moderate breeze).