Friday, July 06, 2007

Weather records

The city of San Francisco has already tied its all-time record rainfall for July 6th, and it's only 8:30 A.M. We still have over 15 hours in which it might actually rain.

That's right: the all-time record rainfall for July 6th in San Francisco is 0.00 inches. Never in recorded history has it even drizzled on the 6th of July. I was a bit surprised a couple of days ago when I noticed in the newspaper that the daily record precip was only 0.02” (0.5 mm), but little did I know what was just around the corner.

Meanwhile, in Death Valley yesterday, the mercury topped out at 53°. No, it's not a freak summer cold snap, that's 53° Celsius, which is to say 127° Fahrenheit. We've been having scorching temperatures here in the Bay Area, too, with Danville (in the inland part of the East Bay, between Livermore and Walnut Creek) hitting 108°F (42°C) yesterday. Even downtown San Francisco was unseasonably hot at 71°F (22°C). O, the suffering humanity. Of course, if it hit 108°F in San Francisco, that would beat our record for July 6th (1921) by a whopping 14 F°, and beat our all-time record high by 5 F°.

At the opposite extreme, Lake Tahoe had the state's lowest low for Thursday, 45°F (7°C). The paper also prints the previous day's high and low temps for California and for "the other 47" contiguous states. This time of year, like, for example last Thursday, it's not unusual for California to beat both ends of "the other 47" extremes. That day, it was a chilly 116°F (47°C) in Death Valley, and a warm and pleasant 16°F (–9°C) at Bodie State Park, a ghost town in the eastern Sierras between Lake Tahoe and Mono Lake. "The other 47" ranged from 114°F (46°C) in Bullhead City, Arizona, to 30°F (–1°C) in Embarrass, Minnesota. Yesterday, though, California's low of 45° was bested by Polebridge, Montana, on the edge of Waterton–Glacier International Peace Park, at 39°F (4°C). We can't be the highest and the lowest every day, after all.

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