WELCOME TO SUMMER, ARE THEY GETTING WARMER?

Early Thursday morning summer officially arrived over the Midwest. However, the typical warmth and steam was missing as a large low pressure system inched across Missouri. You can see the scope of the disturbance with moisture being drawn from the Gulf of Mexico northeast into New England before spinning back into the center of the storm over the Midwest. Rain cooled air stretches from Michigan to Iowa.

The storm has been a wet one too with many parts of the central U.S. seeing rainfall of 1-6" since Monday. Here's the 24 hour totals ending Thursday morning. Plenty more fell in other spots later Thursday.

Here's the 7 day totals ending Thursday morning.

One thing's for sure, the rain has certainly cooled temperatures. Here's the 8:00pm readings Thursday night. Lots of 60s and 70s have replaced the 90s of early week.

Relatively seasonal temperatures are expected into the middle of next week before another round of heat takes aim at the Midwest ensuring July will get off to a steamy start. Here's the 500mb pattern the GFS forecasts July 5th. That big ridge centered over the Ohio Valley should look familiar as it's nearly identical to what we experienced last weekend when heat index values reached 100-105!

The associated temperature departures look like this. The heat goes all the way to Hudson Bay.

It's interesting to note that warmth has dominated the weather pattern since the cold of April broke. Here's April's chill.

May through the present has been just the opposite with well above normal temperatures dominating most of the nation.

Currently May and June are on track to be the warmest ever. It brings to mind a question, are summer's growing warmer with time? Much of the data suggests otherwise. Look at the decline in 90 degree days since 1918. The 30s were brutal.

Severe heat waves are also down since the peak of the 30s. 38 states set their all-time record highs before 1960. (23 of those occurred in the 1930s. All 8 continents recorded their all-time highs before 1980.

The EPA heat wave index confirms the 30s were easily the hottest decade of record. 1934 the the hottest year overall.

There's the facts, make your own decision! Meantime it's Friday, great news for me as I am headed to Santa Fe, New Mexico for a week long weather conference. Before it starts it's off to Taos. The family is coming and we'll of course keep you updated on what we see and do. Rebecca will handle the next post so the next time you here from me I'll be in the Land of Enchantment living the dream. Roll weather...TS

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