Another fine morning in the Land of Pleasant Living. Temperatures will hang below normal for today, with even cooler weather on tap for the balance of the work week. Sunny skies this morning, growing a bit cloudier later today as some upper atmosphere changes work themselves out.
The forecasters out at Sterling say today's weather will "usher in a period of quite pleasant weather as we approach the solstice ... Dewpoints in the 50s today, temperatures 75-80. Breezy northwest winds. Enjoy." The summer solstice occurs at 7:59 p.m. EDT on Friday - the 20th (not the 19th, as I mistakenly said in a Weather Page item last Saturday).
And here's a bonus. The west and northwest breezes will keep away the smoke from those wildfires burning down in Virginia and North Carolina. We've been getting some reports from vacationers and residents down there who have been dealing with the smoke. Not a pretty picture.
It's not perfect. We have a "slight" chance for showers and thunderstorms tomorrow and Thursday, and again on Saturday. But they're not a big worry. Mostly we're looking at pleasant temperatures, sunny to partly cloudy days.
Tonight and tomorrow evening we can also enjoy a spectacular full moon rising in the east. Astronomers say it will be perfectly full at 1:30 p.m. tomorrow, so at moonrise either tonight or Wednesday night it will be almost equally full. Moonrise in Baltimore is at 8:13 p.m. tonight, and 9:03 Wednesday. It's 10 minutes earlier in OC.
This is the 4th full moon since the Vernal Equinox, and before the Summer Solstice. That presents a problem.
Names for full moons (like the Harvest Moon or Hunter's Moon) are only available for three per season. In the old days, calendar writers reserved the term "blue moon" for these oddballs, and applied it to the third full moon in a season that happened to have four, according to Guy Ottewell's Astronomic Calendar. That would have made the May 20 full moon the Blue Moon, and this week's full moon would be the Flower, Rose or Strawberry Moon. (It's only in relatively recent times - since 1946 - that Blue Moon has been applied to any second full moon occuring in a calendar month.)
I think I've already used those names here for the May moon, so I'm stuck. This will either be a second Flower Moon, or a Blue Moon. Take your pick. Or suggest your own moon name here. Like Smog Moon, Muggy Moon or Most Heat Moon.