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Average Weather at Detroit Lakes Airport Minnesota, United States

At Detroit Lakes Airport, the summers are long and warm; the winters are frigid, snowy, and windy; and it is partly cloudy year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 2°F to 80°F and is rarely below -20°F or above 89°F.

Climate Summary

freezingcoldcoolwarmcoolcoldfreezingJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec74%74%35%35%clearovercastprecipitation: 3.8 inprecipitation: 3.8 in0.3 in0.3 inmuggy: 19%muggy: 19%0%0%drydrytourism score: 7.2tourism score: 7.20.00.0
Click on each chart for more information.

Based on the tourism score, the best time of year to visit Detroit Lakes Airport for warm-weather activities is from late June to late August.

Temperature

The warm season lasts for 3.9 months, from May 19 to September 17, with an average daily high temperature above 68°F. The hottest day of the year is July 24, with an average high of 80°F and low of 62°F.

The cold season lasts for 3.3 months, from November 26 to March 4, with an average daily high temperature below 31°F. The coldest day of the year is January 15, with an average low of 2°F and high of 19°F.

Average High and Low Temperature

The daily average high (red line) and low (blue line) temperature, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted lines are the corresponding average perceived temperatures.

The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the entire year of hourly average temperatures. The horizontal axis is the day of the year, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.

Average Hourly Temperature

Average Hourly Temperature at Detroit Lakes AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM4 AM8 AM12 PM4 PM8 PM12 AMfrigidfreezingfreezingcoldcoolcomfortablewarmcoldfrigidvery coldvery coldcomfortablefrigid
The average hourly temperature, color coded into bands: frigid < 15°F < freezing < 32°F < very cold < 45°F < cold < 55°F < cool < 65°F < comfortable < 75°F < warm < 85°F < hot < 95°F < sweltering. The shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight.

Samara, Russia (5,248 miles away) is the far-away foreign place with temperatures most similar to Detroit Lakes Airport (view comparison).

Clouds

At Detroit Lakes Airport, the average percentage of the sky covered by clouds experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The clearer part of the year at Detroit Lakes Airport begins around May 28 and lasts for 4.5 months, ending around October 12. On July 27, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 74% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 26% of the time.

The cloudier part of the year begins around October 12 and lasts for 7.5 months, ending around May 28. On February 5, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 65% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 35% of the time.

Cloud Cover Categories

Cloud Cover Categories at Detroit Lakes AirportclearercloudiercloudierJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%Jul 2774%Jul 2774%Feb 535%Feb 535%May 2854%May 2854%Oct 1254%Oct 1254%clearmostly clearpartly cloudymostly cloudyovercast
The percentage of time spent in each cloud cover band, categorized by the percentage of the sky covered by clouds: clear < 20% < mostly clear < 40% < partly cloudy < 60% < mostly cloudy < 80% < overcast.

Precipitation

A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. The chance of wet days at Detroit Lakes Airport varies significantly throughout the year.

The wetter season lasts 4.9 months, from April 26 to September 23, with a greater than 22% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 39% on June 14.

The drier season lasts 7.1 months, from September 23 to April 26. The smallest chance of a wet day is 6% on January 22.

Among wet days, we distinguish between those that experience rain alone, snow alone, or a mixture of the two. Based on this categorization, the most common form of precipitation at Detroit Lakes Airport changes throughout the year.

Rain alone is the most common for 8.4 months, from March 12 to November 22. The highest chance of a day with rain alone is 39% on June 14.

Snow alone is the most common for 3.6 months, from November 22 to March 12. The highest chance of a day with snow alone is 6% on January 9.

Daily Chance of Precipitation

Daily Chance of Precipitation at Detroit Lakes AirportsnowrainsnowJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Jun 1439%Jun 1439%Jan 226%Jan 226%Mar 1210%Mar 1210%Nov 229%Nov 229%Jan 17%Jan 17%Apr 2622%Apr 2622%Sep 2322%Sep 2322%rainsnowmixed
The percentage of days in which various types of precipitation are observed, excluding trace quantities: rain alone, snow alone, and mixed (both rain and snow fell in the same day).

Rainfall

To show variation within the months and not just the monthly totals, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Detroit Lakes Airport experiences significant seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.

The rainy period of the year lasts for 8.0 months, from March 16 to November 15, with a sliding 31-day rainfall of at least 0.5 inches. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around June 20, with an average total accumulation of 3.8 inches.

The rainless period of the year lasts for 4.0 months, from November 15 to March 16. The least rain falls around January 25, with an average total accumulation of 0.0 inches.

Average Monthly Rainfall

The average rainfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average liquid-equivalent snowfall.

Snowfall

We report snowfall in liquid-equivalent terms. The actual depth of new snowfall is typically between 5 and 10 times the liquid-equivalent amount, assuming the ground is frozen. Colder, drier snow tends to be on the higher end of that range and warmer, wetter snow on the lower end.

As with rainfall, we consider the snowfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Detroit Lakes Airport experiences some seasonal variation in monthly liquid-equivalent snowfall.

The snowy period of the year lasts for 5.7 months, from November 1 to April 21, with a sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent snowfall of at least 0.1 inches. The most snow falls during the 31 days centered around January 6, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.3 inches.

The snowless period of the year lasts for 6.3 months, from April 21 to November 1. The least snow falls around July 19, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.0 inches.

Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall

Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall at Detroit Lakes AirportsnowsnowJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0.0 in0.5 in1.0 in1.5 in2.0 in2.5 in3.0 in3.5 in4.0 inJan 60.3 inJan 60.3 inJul 190.0 inJul 190.0 inMar 40.3 inMar 40.3 inNov 10.1 inNov 10.1 inApr 210.1 inApr 210.1 in
The average liquid-equivalent snowfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average rainfall.

Sun

The length of the day at Detroit Lakes Airport varies significantly over the course of the year. In 2018, the shortest day is December 21, with 8 hours, 32 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 21, with 15 hours, 52 minutes of daylight.

Hours of Daylight and Twilight

Hours of Daylight and Twilight at Detroit Lakes AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 hr24 hr4 hr20 hr8 hr16 hr12 hr12 hr16 hr8 hr20 hr4 hr24 hr0 hr12 hr, 7 minMar 2012 hr, 7 minMar 2015 hr, 52 minJun 2115 hr, 52 minJun 2112 hr, 11 minSep 2212 hr, 11 minSep 228 hr, 32 minDec 218 hr, 32 minDec 21nightnightday
The number of hours during which the Sun is visible (black line). From bottom (most yellow) to top (most gray), the color bands indicate: full daylight, twilight (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and full night.

The earliest sunrise is at 5:28 AM on June 15, and the latest sunrise is 2 hours, 40 minutes later at 8:08 AM on November 3. The earliest sunset is at 4:34 PM on December 11, and the latest sunset is 4 hours, 47 minutes later at 9:21 PM on June 26.

Daylight saving time (DST) is observed at Detroit Lakes Airport during 2018, starting in the spring on March 11, lasting 7.8 months, and ending in the fall on November 4.

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time at Detroit Lakes AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec2 AM4 AM6 AM8 AM10 AM12 PM2 PM4 PM6 PM8 PM10 PM12 AMJun 155:28 AMJun 155:28 AM9:21 PMJun 269:21 PMJun 26Dec 114:34 PMDec 114:34 PM8:08 AMNov 38:08 AMNov 3Mar 11DSTMar 11DSTDSTNov 4DSTNov 4daynightnightnightnightSolarMidnightSolarMidnightSolarNoonSunriseSunset
The solar day over the course of the year 2018. From bottom to top, the black lines are the previous solar midnight, sunrise, solar noon, sunset, and the next solar midnight. The day, twilights (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and night are indicated by the color bands from yellow to gray. The transitions to and from daylight saving time are indicated by the 'DST' labels.

Humidity

We base the humidity comfort level on the dew point, as it determines whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid. Unlike temperature, which typically varies significantly between night and day, dew point tends to change more slowly, so while the temperature may drop at night, a muggy day is typically followed by a muggy night.

Detroit Lakes Airport experiences some seasonal variation in the perceived humidity.

The muggier period of the year lasts for 3.0 months, from June 12 to September 12, during which time the comfort level is muggy, oppressive, or miserable at least 5% of the time. The muggiest day of the year is July 20, with muggy conditions 19% of the time.

The least muggy day of the year is February 19, when muggy conditions are essentially unheard of.

Humidity Comfort Levels

Humidity Comfort Levels at Detroit Lakes AirportmuggyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Feb 190%Feb 190%Jul 2019%Jul 2019%Jun 125%Jun 125%Sep 125%Sep 125%muggymuggyhumidhumiddrydrycomfortablecomfortableoppressiveoppressive
The percentage of time spent at various humidity comfort levels, categorized by dew point: dry < 55°F < comfortable < 60°F < humid < 65°F < muggy < 70°F < oppressive < 75°F < miserable.

Wind

This section discusses the wide-area hourly average wind vector (speed and direction) at 10 meters above the ground. The wind experienced at any given location is highly dependent on local topography and other factors, and instantaneous wind speed and direction vary more widely than hourly averages.

The average hourly wind speed at Detroit Lakes Airport experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The windier part of the year lasts for 8.5 months, from September 14 to May 29, with average wind speeds of more than 11.2 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is April 1, with an average hourly wind speed of 13.1 miles per hour.

The calmer time of year lasts for 3.5 months, from May 29 to September 14. The calmest day of the year is August 1, with an average hourly wind speed of 9.4 miles per hour.

Average Wind Speed

Average Wind Speed at Detroit Lakes AirportwindywindyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 mph2 mph4 mph6 mph8 mph10 mph12 mph14 mph16 mph18 mph20 mphApr 113.1 mphApr 113.1 mphAug 19.4 mphAug 19.4 mphSep 1411.2 mphSep 1411.2 mphMay 2911.2 mphMay 2911.2 mph
The average of mean hourly wind speeds (dark gray line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

The predominant average hourly wind direction at Detroit Lakes Airport varies throughout the year.

The wind is most often from the north for 4.2 months, from January 2 to May 7, with a peak percentage of 35% on April 12. The wind is most often from the south for 6.9 months, from May 7 to December 3, with a peak percentage of 41% on August 26. The wind is most often from the west for 4.3 weeks, from December 3 to January 2, with a peak percentage of 31% on January 1.

Wind Direction

Wind Direction at Detroit Lakes AirportNSWJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%20%80%40%60%60%40%80%20%100%0%westsouthnortheast
The percentage of hours in which the mean wind direction is from each of the four cardinal wind directions (north, east, south, and west), excluding hours in which the mean wind speed is less than 1 mph. The lightly tinted areas at the boundaries are the percentage of hours spent in the implied intermediate directions (northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest).

Best Time of Year to Visit

To characterize how pleasant the weather is at Detroit Lakes Airport throughout the year, we compute two travel scores.

The tourism score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 65°F and 80°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Detroit Lakes Airport for general outdoor tourist activities is from late June to late August, with a peak score in the first week of August.

Tourism Score

Tourism Score at Detroit Lakes Airportbest timeJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec02468107.27.20.00.0 precipitationprecipitationcloudscloudstemperaturetemperaturetourism score
The tourism score (filled area), and its constituents: the temperature score (red line), the cloud cover score (blue line), and the precipitation score (green line).

The beach/pool score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75°F and 90°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Detroit Lakes Airport for hot-weather activities is from early July to mid August, with a peak score in the last week of July.

Beach/Pool Score

Beach/Pool Score at Detroit Lakes AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec02468104.54.50.00.0 precipitationprecipitationcloudscloudstemperaturetemperaturebeach/pool score
The beach/pool score (filled area), and its constituents: the temperature score (red line), the cloud cover score (blue line), and the precipitation score (green line).

Methodology

For each hour between 8:00 AM and 9:00 PM of each day in the analysis period (1980 to 2016), independent scores are computed for perceived temperature, cloud cover, and total precipitation. Those scores are combined into a single hourly composite score, which is then aggregated into days, averaged over all the years in the analysis period, and smoothed.

Our cloud cover score is 10 for fully clear skies, falling linearly to 9 for mostly clear skies, and to 1 for fully overcast skies.

Our precipitation score, which is based on the three-hour precipitation centered on the hour in question, is 10 for no precipitation, falling linearly to 9 for trace precipitation, and to 0 for 0.04 inches of precipitation or more.

Our tourism temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 50°F, rising linearly to 9 for 65°F, to 10 for 75°F, falling linearly to 9 for 80°F, and to 1 for 90°F or hotter.

Our beach/pool temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 65°F, rising linearly to 9 for 75°F, to 10 for 82°F, falling linearly to 9 for 90°F, and to 1 for 100°F or hotter.

Growing Season

Definitions of the growing season vary throughout the world, but for the purposes of this report, we define it as the longest continuous period of non-freezing temperatures (≥ 32°F) in the year (the calendar year in the Northern Hemisphere, or from July 1 until June 30 in the Southern Hemisphere).

The growing season at Detroit Lakes Airport typically lasts for 5.4 months (164 days), from around April 27 to around October 8, rarely starting before April 8 or after May 16, and rarely ending before September 21 or after October 27.

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season at Detroit Lakes Airportgrowing seasonJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%Apr 2750%Apr 2750%Oct 850%Oct 850%May 1690%May 1690%Sep 2190%Sep 2190%Apr 810%Apr 810%Oct 2710%Oct 2710%Jul 20100%Jul 20100%frigidfreezingcoolcomfortablewarmcoldvery coldhot
The percentage of time spent in various temperature bands: frigid < 15°F < freezing < 32°F < very cold < 45°F < cold < 55°F < cool < 65°F < comfortable < 75°F < warm < 85°F < hot < 95°F < sweltering. The black line is the percentage chance that a given day is within the growing season.

Growing degree days are a measure of yearly heat accumulation used to predict plant and animal development, and defined as the integral of warmth above a base temperature, discarding any excess above a maximum temperature. In this report, we use a base of 50°F and a cap of 86°F.

Based on growing degree days alone, the first spring blooms at Detroit Lakes Airport should appear around May 2, only rarely appearing before April 21 or after May 17.

Growing Degree Days

The average growing degree days accumulated over the course of the year, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Solar Energy

This section discusses the total daily incident shortwave solar energy reaching the surface of the ground over a wide area, taking full account of seasonal variations in the length of the day, the elevation of the Sun above the horizon, and absorption by clouds and other atmospheric constituents. Shortwave radiation includes visible light and ultraviolet radiation.

The average daily incident shortwave solar energy experiences extreme seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The brighter period of the year lasts for 3.6 months, from May 3 to August 22, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 5.9 kWh. The brightest day of the year is July 8, with an average of 7.0 kWh.

The darker period of the year lasts for 3.5 months, from October 27 to February 12, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 2.4 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 19, with an average of 1.3 kWh.

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy at Detroit Lakes AirportbrightdarkdarkJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 kWh1 kWh2 kWh3 kWh4 kWh5 kWh6 kWh7 kWh8 kWh9 kWhJul 87.0 kWhJul 87.0 kWhDec 191.3 kWhDec 191.3 kWhMay 35.9 kWhMay 35.9 kWhAug 225.9 kWhAug 225.9 kWhOct 272.4 kWhOct 272.4 kWhFeb 122.4 kWhFeb 122.4 kWh
The average daily shortwave solar energy reaching the ground per square meter (orange line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Topography

For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Detroit Lakes Airport are 46.825 deg latitude, -95.886 deg longitude, and 1,362 ft elevation.

The topography within 2 miles of Detroit Lakes Airport contains only modest variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 144 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 1,365 feet. Within 10 miles also contains only modest variations in elevation (381 feet). Within 50 miles contains only modest variations in elevation (1,165 feet).

The area within 2 miles of Detroit Lakes Airport is covered by cropland (69%), water (14%), and artificial surfaces (13%), within 10 miles by cropland (51%) and trees (29%), and within 50 miles by cropland (65%) and trees (25%).

Data Sources

This report illustrates the typical weather at Detroit Lakes Airport, based on a statistical analysis of historical hourly weather reports and model reconstructions from January 1, 1980 to December 31, 2016.

Temperature and Dew Point

Detroit Lakes Airport has a weather station that reported reliably enough during the analysis period that we have included it in our network. When available, historical temperature and dew point measurements are taken directly from this weather station. These records are obtained from NOAA's Integrated Surface Hourly data set, falling back on ICAO METAR records as required.

In the case of missing or erroneous measurements from this station, we fall back on records from nearby stations, adjusted according to typical seasonal and diurnal intra-station differences. For a given day of the year and hour of the day, the fallback station is selected to minimize the prediction error over the years for which there are measurements for both stations.

The stations on which we may fall back include but are not limited to Fergus Falls Municipal/Einar Mickelson Field, Fosston Municipal Airport, Wadena Municipal Airport, Moorhead Municipal Airport, Park Rapids Municipal-Konshok Field Airport, Hector International Airport, Breckenridge-Wahpeton Interstate Airport, and Chandler Field.

Other Data

All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Tables of the Sun, Moon and Planets , by Jean Meeus.

All other weather data, including cloud cover, precipitation, wind speed and direction, and solar flux, come from NASA's MERRA-2 Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis . This reanalysis combines a variety of wide-area measurements in a state-of-the-art global meteorological model to reconstruct the hourly history of weather throughout the world on a 50-kilometer grid.

Land Use data comes from the Global Land Cover SHARE database , published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Elevation data comes from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) , published by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Names, locations, and time zones of places and some airports come from the GeoNames Geographical Database .

Time zones for aiports and weather stations are provided by AskGeo.com .

Maps are © Esri, with data from National Geographic, Esri, DeLorme, NAVTEQ, UNEP-WCMC, USGS, NASA, ESA, METI, NRCAN, GEBCO, NOAA, and iPC.

Disclaimer

The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data is prone to errors, outages, and other defects. We assume no responsibility for any decisions made on the basis of the content presented on this site.

We draw particular cautious attention to our reliance on the MERRA-2 model-based reconstructions for a number of important data series. While having the tremendous advantages of temporal and spatial completeness, these reconstructions: (1) are based on computer models that may have model-based errors, (2) are coarsely sampled on a 50 km grid and are therefore unable to reconstruct the local variations of many microclimates, and (3) have particular difficulty with the weather in some coastal areas, especially small islands.

We further caution that our travel scores are only as good as the data that underpin them, that weather conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable, and that the definition of the scores reflects a particular set of preferences that may not agree with those of any particular reader.