Warm spell could break records in Marshall

Lake Hendricks fishing derby canceled

Southwest Minnesota will be experiencing above-normal temperatures this week, with the potential to set some new records in Marshall, the National Weather Service said Monday.

Daytime temperatures higher than 40 degrees are expected to stick around through this weekend, with a daytime high of 55 degrees forecast in Marshall on Wednesday.

“If that does pan out, it will be a record,” said Alex Trellinger, a meteorologist at the NWS Office in Sioux Falls. Marshall’s previous highest temperature for Jan. 31 was 52 degrees, he said.

Trellinger said Marshall already hit a record temperature for Jan. 28 as well. The high temperature was recorded at 50 degrees, which puts Sunday into a three-way tie for the warmest Jan. 28 on record. Temperatures of 50 degrees were also reported for that date in 1990 and 1992, according to NWS data.

So far, it doesn’t look like the weather later this week will be quite as warm as some of Marshall’s highest recorded temperatures for early February. In 1992, Marshall reported temperatures of 60 degrees on Feb. 1. Temperatures of 61 degrees were reported on Feb. 3, 2005.

The NWS said a warm and relatively dry week is being forecast for the region, as a ridge of higher pressure says over the northern U.S. and central Canada. Fog is on the forecast this morning, and later on a slight chance of rain is forecast for Friday.

The warm temperatures have posed a challenge for winter outdoor activities in the area. This week, the Lake Hendricks Improvement Association announced that the annual ice fishing derby on Lake Hendricks was canceled.

“Our biggest concern is the spotty ice,” said Greg Pearson of the LHIA. The ice on Lake Hendricks right now ranges anywhere from 16 inches thick down to eight inches in places, he said. The fishing derby usually brings hundreds of people, vehicles and ice fishing houses onto the lake, and that wouldn’t be safe under current conditions.

Instead, the LHIA is planning to hold raffle drawings at a later date, Pearson said.

It’s been an unusual winter on Lake Hendricks. Pearson said ice fishing houses are usually out on the lake by mid-December. This winter, fish houses didn’t really go out until the January cold snap that hit the region.

The Hendricks fishing derby has seldom been canceled in the past.

“As far as I remember, we did not have a fishing derby during COVID, and it was also canceled in 2005. That was a winter like this one,” Pearson said.

Another outdoor event is still planning to go ahead for now. Jared Hively said the Balaton Fire Department and Ambulance was still planning to hold an ice golf tournament on Lake Yankton this weekend. As of Sunday, there was 12 inches of ice on the lake, Hively said. However, the golf tournament would be limited to foot traffic only, he said.


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