BLOG: METEOROLOGICAL SUMMER REVIEW AND FALL FORECAST

(Click images to enlarge)

As you may know, “meteorological summer” is considered to be the 3 warmest months of the year, June, July and August. The “astronomical” seasons are the ones that are more frequently used and of course are based on the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. Astronomical Autumn begins on September 23. But since this is a meteorology blog….”summer” is now over and we can review how it went.

First, the raw numbers. Temperature-wise, this was a pretty typical summer! As you can see, we finished 0.1 degrees above average:

summerstats

The hottest temperature was 91 degrees, which is not all that high but remember in 2014 we did not have ANY 90 degree days. It is possible that the temperature gets near that 91 degree mark over the next few days but I doubt it is exceeded.

Looking across the country, it was a cool summer for the Midwest and Plains states:

summertemps

A warm season for the Northwest and much of the Southeast.

RAIN was really this story this summer. June was EXCEPTIONALLY wet with a little over 9 inches of rain at the airport (3rd wettest June on record). Some rain gauges showed over 12 inches. The pattern flipped dramatically in July and it has been VERY dry ever since.

For the summer, rainfall totals were above average in most of the area and near average in some spots:

rainanom

But take away June and it is a whole different story! Here’s July and August:

RAINJUL1

That wet June really skews the numbers. Summer 2015 was actually the 2nd wettest season in the last 20 years….but you would not know it by all the brown lawns now!

SUMMERRAINCHART

So, “abnormally dry” conditions are present across the Valley as we start Fall.

drought

FALL FORECAST: 

For “Meteorological Fall” (September, October, November), we are expecting a pretty easy-going season. The forecast from the Climate Prediction Center has “equal chances” of a cooler than average and warmer than average season:

cpctemp

Meanwhile, the models are showing a warm season for the region and I tend to agree with the models’ assessment.

CFSAUTUMN

There of course will be plenty of chilly days but the 3 months as a whole should shake out to be warmer than average.

In the rain department, the CPC again shows “equal chances”:

cpcrain

The climate models do not have a strong signal either way.

CFSAUTRAIN

So the 3-month period is likely to be fairly typical as far as rain amounts.

WINTER FORECAST 

Our Winter outlook will be released on TV and online at the end of October or perhaps the first week of November. I will continue to preview the forecast from time to time on my Weather For Weather Geeks video over the next couple of months as new information becomes available.

Thanks for reading!

Eric

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