The early 2000's were marked by near drought conditions in northern Wisconsin. But since 2010, it's been very wet, the wettest on record, and 2019 ended as no exception. Precipitation records were set in many reporting stations in Wisconsin, including Rhinelander.
National Weather Service Chief Meteorologist Phil Aurimski in Green Bay says we had abundant moisture here..
"..Last year, Rhinelander received 43.15 inches of precipitation which means it was the wettest year on record. It beat the old total of 42.86 inches set in 2016. In Rhinelander itself, 7 of the top 21 wettest years on record have occurred since 2000 and four of the top nine wettest years have happened since 2014...."
Wausau, Appleton, Green Bay, and 15 other communities within the Green Bay office coverage area also set records. Aurimski says it's been wet for several years...
"..This last decade has been the wettest decade on record by far, by at least 50-60 inches. Going back all the way to records kept in the 1800's, this has been the wettest decade we've every had..."
The National Weather Service says the water level of Lake Michigan continues to rise after generally staying below long term average values for over a decade.
The high water has caused some shoreline problems.