Friday, July 21, 2017

July Is the New Hades

I'm beating a dead horse, but here's an updated look at July now that we're 2/3 of the way through the month from hell.

Perhaps most remarkably, every day this month has an above average minimum and maximum temperature (normal range in plot below indicated by green background).

Source: NWS
Making that even more remarkable is that the National Weather Service uses the 1981–2010 period for their average.  That's a period that is relatively warm compared to the rest of the 20th century.

And the first 2/3 of July, not surprisingly, is the hottest on record, 2.3ºF warmer than 2007.

Source: NOAA Regional Climate Centers
I have been looking at the models the entire month and waiting for evidence of a bonafide monsoon surge into northern Utah.  We've been tickled by the monsoon moisture in places like Utah County and over the central Wasatch, but for the far north, we've mainly been on the edge of the action with just some light or trace accumulations.  

There is some hope of something happening next week.  The GFS loop below, which runs from 0000 UTC 21 July [1800 MDT Thursday (yesterday)] through 0000 UTC 26 July (1800 MDT Tuesday) shows the drier air moving into northern Utah for this weekend and then a surge of monsoon moisture through eastern Nevada and Utah Monday night and Tuesday.  

GFS 500-mb height (black contours) and precipitable water (color contours)
That's the best surge I've seen the GFS advertise so far this summer.  However, the intricacies of monsoon moisture transport are such that I'm keeping my hopes temperated and will simply be keeping an eye on things over the next few days.


  1. Unrelated question. Do consistent breezes come off of the Great Salt Lake?

  2. The Great Salt Lake generates and afternoon land breeze and overnight land breezes. These breezes interact with circulations generated by the terrain, as well as the large-scale flow.

  3. I love the sounding temperature analyses and the NWS site temperature plots. I'm always looking for plots like those when I'm perusing/forecasting the weather here in Boulder, CO. Curious, do you have direct links to where you can generate these images (or a link to where they are archived)?

    1. If you are talking about the top image, it's created by the NWS forecast office in Salt Lake. I don't know if it is produced by other forecast offices, like the one in Boulder.

    2. I see, so it is not a regularly generated plot for all NWS surface stations?

      How about the second image (mean average temperature time series)?

    3. It is not a regularly generated plot for all NWS surface stations.

      The other graph is generated at You will need to play round with the options.


  4. Great, thanks! I'm always looking for great websites for weather info.