Author: Mary Knapp

It can be challenging when checking for late spring snowstorms in the Plains. Hail is reported in the same column as snow, making it difficult to separate events. On June 3, 1959 thunderstorms in northwestern Kansas created just such a challenge. The storm produced up to 18 inches of hail near Selden during the early evening. Crops were completely destroyed, and total damage from the storm was reported as about half a million dollars, although that is likely to under-estimate the actual damage. Hail fell for a record 85 minutes! One of the difficulties in separating out the hail event was that although the temperature reached 80 degrees Fahrenheit before the storm, it dropped to 38 degrees at the height of the storm.

Hail Drift (Public Domain)

Mary Knapp, Weather Data Library