NATIONAL WEATHER SUMMARY
1st-9th…Much needed rain fell across the southern and western Corn Belt, easing concerns about the effects of a drier than normal July. Dry conditions covered the lower Southeast excluding southern Florida. Drought related concerns also returned to Texas, due to mostly dry weather and building heat.
Heat lingered across the Deep South, where Tallahassee, FL, posted a daily record high of 99F on August 5. Later, cool weather returned across much of the central and eastern U.S., including the Midwest. On August 7, maximum temperatures failed to top the 70 degree mark as far south as Lincoln, IL, where the high was 70F. Relief from the heat never reached as far south as Florida, where additional daily record highs included 99F (on August 8) in Tallahassee and 95F (on August 9) in Daytona Beach. Farther north, however, August 9 high temperatures in southern Virginia peaked at 67F in both Lynchburg and Roanoke. Elsewhere, cloudiness and showers helped to suppress temperatures in parts of the West. With a high of 89F on August 3, Death Valley, CA, reported an August maximum temperature below the 90-degree mark for only the seventh time since 1911.
19th-16th…Patchy showers dotted the nation, providing beneficial moisture for pastures and immature summer crops in many areas but leaving some fields still in need of moisture.
The interaction between a strong cold front and the monsoon circulation led to widespread showers in much of the West. Rain was heavy in parts of the Four Corners States—but was especially beneficial in the Northwest with respect to aiding wildfire containment efforts and easing stress on rangeland, pastures, and immature summer crops. As the week progressed, heat yielded to cooler conditions in the Northwest but intensified on the High Plains. Cool air covered many other areas of the country, including the Midwest, Mid-South, and Northeast. Weekly temperatures averaged at least 5F below normal in many locations from the Midwest into the Northeast. Heat lingered early in the week across the Northwest, where daily record highs for August 11 climbed to 102F in Boise, ID, and 96F in Seattle, WA. At the same time, heat began to build in the western Gulf Coast region. The hot conditions persisted through week’s end in coastal Texas, where selected daily record highs included 104F (on August 16) in McAllen; 103F (on August 11) in Victoria; and 101F (on August 12) in Corpus Christi. In contrast, unusually cool conditions returned across much of the Midwest, South, and East during the second half of the week. Daily record lows included 43°F (on August 15) in Ft. Wayne, IN; 53F (on August 16) in Trenton, NJ; and 58F (on August 14) in Knoxville, TN. Temperatures in Marquette, MI, dipped below the 50F mark on 4 consecutive days from August 12-15, including lows of 44F on August 14-15.
17th-23rd…Heat accompanied the lack of rainfall across the South. In fact, late summer heat expanded from the central and southern Plains into the Midwest and Southeast. As a result, weekly temperatures averaged at least 5F above normal in many locations from the central and southern Plains into the middle Mississippi Valley. Similar temperature departures were noted along portions of the southern Atlantic Coast. In contrast, near to
Below normal temperatures covered the Northeast and much of the West. Elsewhere,
As the week progressed, heat intensified across the South. From August 21-24, Tallahassee, FL, noted four consecutive daily-record highs (99, 100, 101, and 101F). With highs of 97F on August 22-23, Apalachicola, FL, experienced its hottest weather since
August 29, 2011. By August 24, Apalachicola’s high of 102F was the second-highest temperature on record in that location tied with July 13, 1999. Apalachicola’s highest reading on record remains 103F, set on August 15, 1995. Other southern locations reporting daily record, triple-digit highs included Borger, TX (101F on August 21); Savannah, GA (100F on August 22 and 23); Montgomery, AL (100F on August 23); and Springfield, MO (100F on August 23). In contrast, late-week temperatures dipped to daily record levels in scattered Western locations, including Alta, UT (33F on August 23).
24th-31st…In the northern Plains, the lingering effects of cool, continued. Meanwhile, little or no rain fell in the East and West. The dry weather resulted in drought development or intensification in some areas, including portions of Alabama, Georgia, and northern Florida. The drought situation remained largely unchanged in the West, although monsoon-related showers continued to provide local relief in the Four Corners States. Late summer heat continued from the southern Plains into the Midwest, boosting weekly temperatures more than 5F above normal. The hot weather promoted summer crop development but stressed some immature crops, especially in the southern Plains. Some of the hottest weather of the year reached the Plains, although readings above 95F were limited to southern crop production areas. Even with the surge of heat, temperatures did not attain the 90-degree mark during the week across the northern Plains. Temperatures quickly rebounded across the northern Plains. In Havre, MT, a high of 53F on August 24 was followed just 3 days later by a maximum temperature of 90F. Meanwhile, most of the remainder of the country experienced at least several days of very warm weather. With a high of 92F on August 24, Burlington, IA, posted its first 90 degree reading of the year. Prior to this year, Burlington’s latest observance of the year’s first 90 degree reading had occurred on July 4, 1907. Farther south, however, the heat was much more impressive. With a high of 102F on
August 24, Apalachicola, FL, tied July 13, 1999, for its second highest reading on record. Apalachicola’s all-time record remains 103F on August 15, 1995. Elsewhere in the South,
Daily record, triple-digit highs for August 24 included 101F in Tallahassee, FL, and 100F in Hattiesburg, MS, and Memphis, TN. Springfield, MO, posted consecutive daily record highs (100 and 101F, respectively) on August 24-25. Eventually, hot weather spread to other parts of the country. In Maine, for example, daily record highs on August 25 reached 90F in Millinocket and 88F in Caribou. Meanwhile in Oregon, Eugene experienced 4 days during the week with highs of 90F or greater, including a daily record high of 96F on August 26.
Through August, Eugene’s 30 days in 2014 with 90-degree readings were twice the annual normal of 15 days and closing in on the 1958 calendar-year record of 31 days. During the second half of the week, cool, dry air settled into much of the East, resulting in consecutive daily-record lows of 50°F on August 29-30 in Wheeling, WV.
Jim G. Munley, jr.
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