Sunday, July 18, 2010

Hello Arizona, The Weather Has Arrived!

That's right we have weather here in Arizona! With an increased amount of thunderstorm activity the previous week and even better chances coming up, I'd say the Monsoon decided to show up to this party. I know Arizona is a dry heat, and I've experienced that. 114 degrees does sting when you go outside. When the overnight low temperature doesn't drop below 94 degrees, you know it's going to be a "hot" one today. I can't really remember what it is like to be "cool" outside when it is dark, when I leave work at 10pm it is usually still above 100 degrees. Swimming in an outdoor pool in 110+ degrees doesn't feel cold, cool or refreshing. It is just taking a bath without soap and with a swim suit on. Yes, sitting in a hot tub while it is 109+ degrees outside does sound crazy, it is crazy but it doesn't feel any different than the air temperature, which is also, crazy. When the humidity is averaging 9-12% it is a dry heat, I've never seen humidity that low.

This morning reminded me of Colorado. Walking outside just after sunrise with an almost completely cloud-covered sky and humidity high enough I could smell and feel it. Was I dreaming? Nope. Monsoon season has arrived. Though it technically arrived June 15 as the season is set to start then, but the old legacy way to determine the start of the monsoon would say that it started July 10; with the legacy method being the first day of three consecutive days with dewpoints at 55 degrees and above. That humidty I was talking about this morning, the dewpoint was nearly at 70 degrees! Our overnight low gave some relief as it was only 89 overnight.

Friday was looking to be a promising day, but cloud cover came in for relief and prevented the high temperature from racing to 118; only making it to 113. Cooler weather is expected today and the next couple days, and by cooler I'm only talking a couple degrees cooler :) We have been breaking records with the overnight low temperature being warm. In the last 8 days we've broken 4 record warm low temperatures. Of these, on July 15th the overnight low temperature was 94, just 2 degrees shy of breaking the all-time record warm low temperature of 96 degrees. Our day-time high temperatures have been quite a bit above normal with numerous days in a row of 110+ degrees.

3 days worth of temperature, dewpoint and relative humidty

Storms to come today?!
With the right ingredients in place, we could see some storms in the metro area tonight. Some upper level Easterly winds, precipitible water values above 1.8 inches, a very well mixed boundary layer and the ridge now moving to our East should give way to some moisture advection this evening. Both GFS and NAM 500mb winds showing a directional change from South-Southeaserly to East-Northeasterly, and mixing ratios in the 12g/kg range. Needless to say it will be a juicy day!

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