A storm that blew through the Mankato area early Tuesday resulted in some spotty crop damage from hail.
“There are a lot of unknowns at this time,” said Travis Stewart of Crop Insurance Services in Mankato, which serves a large portion of southern Minnesota.
He said crop damage reports have come from some area counties north of Mankato, though the extent of individual losses won’t be determined until acreage is assessed by insurance adjusters.
Sue Schwartz, who farms with husband Brian five miles east of Le Sueur, said the hail struck about 3:45 a.m. and lasted about 10 minutes. She said that judging by the look of neighboring farm fields, the hail line followed a path along Highway 26 out of Le Sueur, then ended abruptly.
She couldn’t say how large the stones were but Le Sueur County Sheriff Tom Doherty said he heard reports of half-dollar size hail falling in some locales.
Le Sueur County Extension Educator Diane DeWitte said rainfall reports in that area were less than an inch.
The National Weather Service reported hail from about 1 in. in diameter in Winthrop, Gaylord and Le Sueur to 2.5 in. in diameter in Dundas. Winds were clocked in the 45 mph to up to 80 mph range and 50 to 60 trees were downed in Belle Plaine.
The storm appeared to cause the most damage in south metro counties including Dakota, Goodhue, Rice and Scott, where thousands lost electricity and there were numerous reports of downed trees and power lines.