Fewer 90s

From the 1920s through the 1980s Fargo Moorhead
averaged between 140 and 170 days per decade with temperatures of 90 degrees or
higher  The 1930s had by far the highest number of such days with 219
being recorded.  The 1980s had the second highest total with 168 90 degree

During the 1990s, 90 degree weather quickly became much less
frequent with only 97 days at or above 90 degrees being recorded which was the
fewest since the 1900s decade.  Although 90 degree weather has been more
frequent this decade with 97 such days being recorded so far, the last two
years of this decade (2009 and 2010) would need to be well above average years
to get this decade to the level most of last century achieved. 

patterns are always changing; therefore the odds are high that this area will
be returning to more frequent 90 degree summer weather in the coming decades.

Lots of Water

Since official records began on January 1, 1881, the 3.33
inches of rain that fell officially in Fargo Moorhead on Monday ranked as the
13th highest daily total ever measured (although, I only had 2.00" in both of my gauges).

The highest midnight to midnight total was
4.72 inches on August 8, 1943. 

Most of
you probably remember the Fargo
flood on June 19 and 20 back in 2000. 
Because that event occurred over two days, June 19 ranks 2nd
all time for daily rainfall at 4.64 inches, but an additional 2.18 inches fell
after midnight on the 20th. 
The total rain from that event of 6.82 inches does rank as the heaviest
24 hour total on record, but because it occurred over two days it misses out on
the all-time daily record. 

Although this
area has been in a wetter pattern the past fifteen years, only two of the top
ten daily precipitation records have been set since 1993 with four out of the
top ten occurring in the 1880s and 1890s.

Perseid Meteor Shower

Tonight is expected to be the peak of the annual
Perseid meteor shower.  The name originates from the fact that many of the
meteors will radiate, or appear to come from the constellation Perseus.

It is
usually one of the better meteor showers of the year. The best time to look
would be after midnight, away from city lights. 

It is estimated that
between 50 to 100 meteors per hour could be seen in a dark sky.  Of course
any cloud cover tonight (which looks very likely) would spoil the show, but even if you can not make it
out tonight, the peak night, the earth will still be moving through the dust
field created by Comet Swift-Tuttle for the next several days giving you an
opportunity to enjoy seeing more meteors than you would during other times of
the year. 

Where have all the 100s gone?

A viewer/listener wrote in and asked about the longest period of time without 100 degree
temperatures.   The first 100 degree
temperature recorded in Fargo Moorhead was on June 30, 1883 (records started in
1881) and since then we have official hit 100 degrees or higher 86 times.  

Three times in the historical record Fargo
Moorhead went approximately eleven years without a 100 degree day.  These stretches occurred from 1900-1911,
1949-1958, and the latest from 1995-2006. 
Plus, there was a ten year period without 100 degree heat from 1965-1975. 

The longest stretch of these was our most
recent from June 17, 1995 to July 15, 2006 a period of 11 years and 28 days
between hitting 100, plus if you take away the one day in 1995, you would have
had to go back to 1989 for the previous 100. 

There is no other such period with fewer 100 degree days than that
period from 1989 to 2006. 

Eight in a Row

July 2008 was the eighth
straight month with below average temperatures in Fargo Moorhead.   Last month finished 0.5 degrees below the
thirty year average, which really made it a very average month for temperatures,
whereas most of these several months in a row with below average temperatures
finished well below average.   

The warmest temperature last month was
recorded on July 11 when the temperature reached 91 degrees and the coolest
temperature was recorded on July 3 when we dipped down to 46 degrees. 

Precipitation wise, it was a dry month
locally.  We missed a couple of heavier
rain events to our north and south during the course of the month, so
officially at the airport just 1.78 inches of rain fell which is 1.10 inches
below average.   

Even with a relatively
dry July, we are still running a bit above average for both yearly and summer precipitation.

Solar Eclipse

total eclipse of the Sun is occurring this morning from about 4:00 AM to 6:30
AM local time from northern Canada
to China

The totality started in Nunavut, near Cambridge Bay
in northern Canada, then
through northern Greenland, across the Arctic Ocean, through central Russia (Siberia), then to Mongolia, and ended near Xian, in China as the Sun was setting in the ancient
capital of China

Parts of southern China will
get an opportunity to see yet another solar eclipse that will move from India through China
and then out into the Pacific Ocean next year on
July 22. 

The next total solar eclipse in the United
is not until August 21, 2017 when the moon will
completely block out the Sun in a path from Oregon
through Nebraska to South Carolina.  Right here in Fargo Moorhead, our next total
solar eclipse won’t be until September 14, 2099.