The first day of astronomical summer is finally here, but that doesn’t mean temperatures will correspond immediately to this change in seasons. Much of the nation will be mild with 59% of the US forecast to experience temperatures of at least 80 degrees this Thursday. That includes much of the East Coast, Southern Tier, and parts of the Northwest, Northern Plains, and Upper Midwest. Temperatures in most of these areas will also be above average.
Now where it will be below average, feeling more like spring, will be from the Central Plains through the Ohio River Valley and into the interior Northeast. High temperatures will mainly be in the 70s, which will feel quite nice in our opinion. Some areas in the Midwest will not even get out of the 60s for a daytime temperature, making for a summer bummer.
One particular city — Norfolk, Nebraska — may even break their record cold high temperature, or record low maximum, with a forecast high of only 65 degrees. This current forecast currently expects the record to be tied, which was set back in 1903, but based on the unusually cool air mass for this time of year in place, we wouldn’t be surprised if the record is indeed broken.
Typical Hottest Day of the Year:
The hottest day of the year varies across the country, and most areas don’t experience their warmest temperature on the first day of summer, which is when the sun angle is at its greatest in the sky. In fact, most areas wait until July for the warmest day to occur.
Along the immediate West Coast, the ‘May gray’ and ‘June gloom’ tend to hold temperatures down. It’s not until August when temperatures usually max out. Late-July or early-Ausgut is when much of the West Coast region up through the Northwest and Northern Plains deals with their hottest day of the year on average.
In the Southwest, the heat comes early. The North American Monsoon season begins June 15th, which marks the start of the stormy few months of the year. Therefore, the hottest time period in the hottest part of the country normally is in June to early-July.
It’s the complete opposite to the east where the Southern Plains and Lower-Mississippi River Valley’s warmest temperatures wait until August as the severe season winds down relatively-spreading. The severe storms become more commonplace across the Northern Plains in August.
Temperatures follow a similar schedule as the Southwest in a typical year in much of the Midwest. The warmest day of the year falls in early-July, based on data between 1981 and 2010.
Across much of the Eastern Seaboard, July is the hottest month of the summer in most areas. The only exception is in South Florida where early-August is the more favorable time period.