Through Jan. 18, snowfall for the season was 41 inches for Fargo-Moorhead and 49.2 inches for Grand Forks. Since Jan. 18, Fargo-Moorhead has received 3 inches of snow and Grand Forks has received 3.9 inches. Somebody flipped a switch, it seems.

However, our climate's bipolar tendencies are well-known. From warm to cold or from wet to dry, the Northern Great Plains has always been prone to go to extremes, often from one extreme to the other. North Dakota's all-time record high temperature of 121 degrees set in Steele and its all-time record low of 60 below zero set in Parshall both happened in 1936. Fargo's driest calendar year on record in 1976 was followed by its wettest in 1977, although that wet record has since been eclipsed.

Unfortunately, it is difficult to know when these dramatic weather pattern shifts are going to occur. When it stopped snowing in January, we did not know it had stopped until several weeks had passed. Likewise, we cannot know when the switch will be flipped back from dry to wet.

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