June ended at midnight last night without having delivered a single day in the 90s. May ended the same way. Baltimore - or BWI at least, the station of record for the city - has had just three days in the 90s so far in 2009, all of them in April.
So, does that mean we're in for a "cool" summer ? "Maybe," said Steve Zubrick, the science and operations officer for the National Weather Service's Sterling forecast office. He's been crunching the numbers for the past few months, and found the following:
1. June 2009 had the fewest 90+ days (zero) since 1979. That's only happened six times since they began keeping official records for the city - in 1886, 1903, 1916, 1972, 1979 and 2009. The average number of 90+ degree days in June in Baltimore is 5.7. Last year we had nine. The record is 18, in 1943.
2. May passed without any highs in the 90s, too. The last time May and June both stayed out of the 90s was in 1979. That's only happened four times: in 1979, 1972, 1886 and 2009.
3. So how do summers with no 90-degree weather in June turn out? Zubrick said the coolest three-month (June-August) summer period on record for Baltimore was in 1903, which saw no 90-degree weather in June. The summer of 1886 was the 6th coolest, and also had no June days in the 90s. The summer of 1912 was the 12th coolest on record, and likewise had no June days in the 90s.
4. On the other hand, that latest long-term forecast for Baltimore for this summer, issued at the end of May, called for a cooler-than-normal June, but above-normal temperatures overall for the 90-day summer period. If they're right, we're in for a hot July and August.
5. As for rainfall, April, May and June together produced 19.74 inches of rain at BWI. That ranks as the second-wettest April-June period on record for the city.
For Zubrick's complete (unofficial and preliminary) report, read on.
(SUN PHOTO/John Makely 2006)
"June 2009 featured NO 90F days (or better)...as measured at BWI.
"However, the ASOS in downtown Baltimore at the Maryland Science Center (identifier: DMH), had 3-90F/+ days this June 2009 (2nd, 25th and 26th, and today-30th-they came close at 89F). But DMH's data only goes back to 2000.
"This makes June 2009 as having the fewest (0) days of 90F since 1979. Next fewest 90F days was in 2004 when 1 was recorded.
"There have been 5 years with no 90F/+ days in Baltimore: 1886, 1903, 1916, 1972, 1979.
"June 2009 makes it the 6th for the record (we got close today...6/30...BWI had a high of 87F).
"The normal # of 90F or better days in Baltimore for June is 5.7 days.
"Last year, BWI had nine (9) 90F or better days (and DMH had 10 days of 90F or better).
"The most number of 90F+ days in Baltimore was 18 in 1943 (a year which also featured the hottest June on record in Balt with an avg monthly temp of 79.8F)
"Through 6/29 at BWI...avg mon temp stands at 71.3F, which if it doesn't change would make June 2009 tied for 27th coolest.
"May 2009 at BWI also did not have any 90F days. There have been only 3 days of 90F or better at BWI so far this calendar year (2009) at BWI; all measured in April.
"Last time both consecutive months of May and June together had >NO< 90F days was in 1979 (and it's only happened 3 times: 1979, 1972 and 1886).
"Does having NO 90F degree days in June portend a cool summer? Maybe.
"For the Jun-Jul-Aug summer calendar period, the coolest Jun-Aug was in 1903 (a year that featured no 90F deg days in June) with an average temp of 72.1F. The summer (Jun-Aug) of 1886 was 6th coolest (73.2F...again no June 90F days). 1972 was 12th coolest (73.5) and 1979 was 27th coolest (74.1).
"The latest official CPC Jun-Jul-Aug forecast actually called (made back on May 31, 2009) for above normal for temperatures for the 90-day period. It also (and correctly) called for below normal temps for June, which appears is going to verify.
"Rainfall so far (through 29 June 2009) at BWI stands at 5.41", which if it stands, would make this June 2009 the 25th wettest (we've picked up 0.07" this evening ... but I don't have search capability to see where it might rank...it might move up a notch perhaps).
"The combined 2-month rainfall total for Balt for May and June 2009 stands at 13.83" (thought Jun 29th)...making it the 4th wettest May-Jun two month period on record.
"The April-May-June 2009 period 3-month total rainfall for BWI stands at 19.63 through Jun 29th. This would make it the 2nd wettest Apr-May-Jun period on record in Baltimore (and we'd need almost 2" more to beat the record).