Welcome to our new severe weather archive page. On this page, you will find write ups about some historic and memorable severe weather events which happened across our coverage region, all the way down to our local backyard. While much of what appears on this page pertains to events which occurred in Wisconsin, their is also an extensive listing of some memorable events which happened across our coverage region. Much of this information was obtained from National Weather Service records, while other information was gathered from various historic sources.
(DISCLAIMER): All information, data, and graphics presented on this page was created manually in our office. No gaurentee exists as to completeness or accuracy of such information. Since all severe weather records prior to 1950 are considered incomplete, our staff cannot be held responsible for the accuracy of these records. All data is published electronically and assumed valid when posted. You use this information "at your own risk".



This section will list the worst tornado events in Wisconsin history. This list dates back to 1865. Please keep in mind that events prior to 1950 are preliminary, and are not verified by the National Weather Service.

Date
Number of Deaths
Number of Injured
Affected Counties
Remarks
June 29, 1865
24
100
Vernon
N/A
March 10, 1876
09
15
Grant
N/A
May 23, 1878
19
25
Iowa, Dane, Waukesha, and Milwaukee
N/A
September 29, 1881
12
??
Buffalo
Injury count unknown
May 18, 1883
25
100
Racine
N/A
June 12, 1889*
117
125
St. Croix, Polk, and Barron
See notes below
July 07, 1907
26
??
Clark, Jackson, and Juneau
Unknown injuries
November 11, 1911
09
10
Rock
N/A
September 21, 1924
26
114
Eau Claire, Clark, Marathon, Taylor, Lincoln, and Oneida
One addional event. See below.
September 21, 1924
10
50
Barron, Rusk, Bayfield, Sawyer, and Ashland
N/A
April 25, 1929
12
100
Pierce and Iron
N/A
June 04, 1958
19
110
St. Croix and Dunn
N/A
June 7 and 8, 1984**
09
200
Lafayette, Iowa, and Dane
See notes below

Notes:
* This storm would become known as the "New Richmond Cyclone".
** This storm would become known as the "Barneveld Tornado".

WISCONSIN TOP 10! Shown below are the stats's top 10 tornadoes with the longest tracks. This list dates back to 1878.
Date Track Length (miles) Counties Affected
May 23, 1878 150 Iowa, Dane, Waukesha, and Milwaukee
May 18, 1898 110 Eau Claire, Clark, Langlade, Marathon, and Lincoln
Sept 21, 1924 120 Eau Claire, Clark, Taylor, Marathon, Lincoln, and Oneida
Sept 21, 1924 90 Barron, Rusk, Bayfield, Sawyer, and Ashland
July 16, 1926 85 Bayfield, Ashland, Iron, and Vilas
*April 05, 1929 170 Pierce and Iron
June 13, 1930 80 Treapealeau, Jackson, Clark, Marathon, and Lincoln
June 13, 1930 75 Pierce, Dunn, and Eau Claire
May 10, 1953 100 Pierce, St. Croix, Polk, Burnette, Washburn, and Douglas
May 10, 1953 100 Buffalo, Trempealeau, Chippewa, and Eau Claire
Sept 28, 1971 75 Chippewa, Clark, Marathon, and Lincoln
Sept 28, 1971 75 Langlade, Marathon, Marinette, Oconto, and Menominee
June 05, 1977 73 Fond Du Lac, Dodge, Washington, and Waukesha

Notes:
* This tornado track is the longest documented one within the state.

Here are some additional historic tornado events from the last 100 years: (1900-2000) in Wisconsin.
  1. *The largest tornado outbreak: July 3, 1907 producing 14 deaths.
  2. **Deadiest tornado: September 21, 1924 resulting in 26 deaths.
  3. Deadiest year for tornadoes: 1924 with 43 total deaths.
  4. ***Deadiest month for tornadoes: September of 1924 with 36 deaths.
  5. Year with the most tornadoes: 1980 with 47 storms.*
* While 1980 had the most tornadoes in a year for Wisconsin, the current all time annual tornado count stands at 62 tornadoes documented in 2005.

Here are some famous and memorable twisters to hit the badger state.
Notes:
* A family of 3-4 separate, but intense tornadoes moved through westcentral and central Wisconsin. Specifically, the counties of Clark, Jackson, Monroe, Juneau, Green Lake, and Sauk were hit. A total of 14 deaths was documented.
** This storm began in Eau Claire county, and lifted in Oneida county. 26 persons died.
*** Two separate events this day...
a) a strong tornado with a 120 mile long path from Eau Claire county, through Clark, Marathon, Taylor, Lincoln, and Oneida counties producing 26 fatalities, and,
b) another tornado with a 90 mile long track from Rusk, Barron, Bayfield, Sawyer, and Ashland counties, resulting in 10 more fatalities.


Central Wisconsin Historical Severe Events

In this section, we are presenting historical/memorable severe weather events for the 9 counties of central Wisconsin. In the table below, we illustrate all the more extreme events which raked the area from 1970 through 2006.

Extremely Large Hail Extremely Damaging Winds Significant Tornadoes

In the tables that follow, we will list all documented tornadoes since accurate records began in 1950 through 2016.

Wood county data:

Event Sequence Number
Date (M/D/Y)
Time of Report
Location of Event
E/EF Rating
Width (yards)
Path (miles)
1
05/07/1964
1:00 pm
Wisconsin Rapids
F-2
100
0.5
2
03/31/1967
7:05 pm
Marshfield
F-2
35
1.9
3
07/22/1967
6:00 pm
2 miles south of Loyal - 5 miles east of Marshfield
F-2
100
21.4
4
06/17/1970
1:35 pm
3 miles south of Wisconsin Rapids
F-0
100
0.1
5
12/01/1970
3:00 am
12 miles southeast of Marshfield
F-2
200
2.0
6
07/08/1971
10:00 pm
Wisconsin Rapids
F-1
75
2.0
7
06/13/1976
1:40 pm
4 miles west of Wisconsin Rapids
F-1
100
24.6
8
03/30/1982
9:05 am
Armenia
F-1
35
28.0
9
07/03/1983
2:11 pm
5 miles northeast of Nekoosa
F-0
10
0.3
10
04/27/1984
11:05 pm
Saratoga
F-0
50
1.0
11
08/12/1985
1:13 pm
6 miles south of Marshfield
F-2
880
10.0
12
04/20/1992
10:00 am
2 miles southwest of Arpin
F-1
25
9.5
13
08/03/1999
12:45 pm
3 miles west of Pittsville
EF-0
10
0.1
14
06/08/2003
7:59 am
4.1 miles south of Marshfield (airport)
EF-0
50
0.1
15
06/07/2007
10:26 am
2.1 miles west of Wisconsin Rapids (airport)
EF-0
40
0.1
16
07/29/2008
12:44 pm
4.2 miles southeast of Nasonville
EF-0
25
1.5
17
07/14/2010
11:18 am
2.2 miles west southwest of Veedum
EF-0
50
0.3
18
05/22/2011
12:03 pm
5.5 miles south southeast of Cranmoor
EF-1
350
31.6
19
08/23/2011
11:58 am
0.3 miles northwest of Arpin
EF-0
10
0.1

Portage county data:

Event Sequence Number
Date (M/D/Y)
Time of Report
Location of Event
E/EF Rating
Width (yards)
Path (miles)
1
09/26/1951
10:45 am
9 miles south southwest of Amherst
F-4
100
22.3
2
04/03/1956
7:50 am
3 miles south of Bancroft
F-2
100
18.2
3
04/19/1957
11:00 am
Coddington
F-1
30
12.6
4
06/23/1962
2:00 pm
15 miles east of Stevens Point
F-0
??
??
5
08/22/1964
9:00 am
6 miles west Bancroft
F-2
300
7.0
6
07/07/1970
10:00 am
Bancroft
F-2
100
2.0
7
12/01/1970
2:00 am
Hull (Stevens Point)
F-1
200
2.7
8
06/09/1974
9:45 am
Bancroft
F-1
30
2.5
9
06/12/1976
3:30 pm
1 mile west of Alban
F-2
50
0.2
10
06/12/1976
4:00 pm
Amherst
F-1
50
0.3
11
06/13/1976
2:00 pm
Plover (Stevens Point)
F-2
50
0.3
12 *
06/13/1976
2:20 pm
3 miles northeast of Stevens Point (lifted)
F-1
100
13.0
13 **
03/30/1982
9:40 am
lifted 3 miles southwest of Stevens Point
F-1
35
28.0
14
04/27/1984
9:15 am
0.5 miles south of Plover
F-2
220
5.5
15
05/08/1988
12:12 pm
3 miles west of Keene
F-0
25
1.0
16
05/16/1992
9:30 am
5 miles north of Junction City
F-1
400
1.3
17
05/16/1992
12:10 pm
4 miles west of Keene
F-2
400
11.0
18
10/08/1992
11:12 am
4 miles northeast of Blaine
F-1
100
2.0
19
06/23/2004
1:46 pm
3 miles north northwest of Almond
EF-1
25
1.5
20
06/23/2004
1:47 pm
Whiting (Stevens Point)
EF-0
10
0.1
21
06/23/2004
1:53 pm
Blaine
EF-1
100
2.5
22 ***
05/22/2011
12:20 pm
4.5 miles southeast of Arnott (lifted)
EF-0
700
31.6
23
07/09/2013
11:44 am
4.2 miles south of Bancroft
EF-0
25
0.2

Notes:
* This tornado developed about 4 miles west of Wisconsin Rapids, and lifted about 3 miles northeast of Stevens Point.
** This tornado developed in the town of Armenia, and then lifted 3 miles southwest of Stevens Point.
*** This tornado developed about 5.5 miles south southeast of the town of Cranmoor, and then lifted about 4.5 miles southeast of Arnott.


The following is historical tornado data for our coverage region. Remember, this is only for tornadoes. Large hail and damaging wind facts are just below this.

Date Time (If known) Location Number of Tornadoes Injuries Deaths
04/11-12/1965 100pm to 100am Midwest/Great Lakes region 51 3,148 260
21 April, 1967 1230pm to 900pm Northern Illinois* 52 1,248 57
24 January, 1967 200pm to 200am Iowa, Illinois, & Wisconsin 30 268 7
04/3-4/1974 ?? Midwest Area** 148 total in 24 hrs 6,142 315 Total
06/7-8/1984 200pm to 200am Upper Great Lakes Area 42 319 13
17 June, 2010 ?? Minnesota*** 77 -- 3
04/9-10/2011 ?? Primarly Iowa and Wisconsin**** 43 -- 0

Notes:
* Mainly northern Illinois was affected, but some storms also happened in Iowa and lower Michigan as well.
** This event occurred in Illinois, Indiana, and lower Michigan of our coverage region, and was part of the "Super Outbreak" of tornadoes that year. In all, 148 total twisters happened in a span of 24 hours, with 36 of those within our coverage region. There were 315 total fatalities, 51 of those in our coverage region. This event stands as the second worst event in U.S. history behind the 2011 super outbreak.
*** Other then North Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin received tornado touchdowns. In Wisconsin, only 1 tornado was reported. Damage was in the millions of dollars all tolled. Four F4 tornadoes occurred in Minnesota.
**** Although details are sketchy, this event spanning a two day period, produced widespread damage totaling 2.2 billion dollars. There were 16 confirmed tornadoes in Wisconsin, including an F3 tornado which moved across northern Marathon and Lincoln counties. Iowa reported 21 twisters, including an F4 tornado which occurred south of Pocahontas Iowa. Amazingly, there were NO reported fatalities in this event!
Strong/Violent tornadoes across our region (Graphical)

This table represents those tornadoes which were ranked F3/EF3 to F5/EF5 in magnitude. It spans the period from 1970 to 2006. Click thumbnail for larger image.

Deadly Tornadoes Tracks/Fujita Rating

Extremely large hail and damaging winds (Graphical)

This table shows all the documented significant wind and hail reports from across our coverage region. The data is valid from 1970 to 2006. Click thumbnail for larger image.

Extremely Large Hail Extremely Damaging T-Storm Winds

Additional data will be included on this page as time allows.
Return to the main climatology page here .