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  • Writer's pictureTodd Yakoubian

Summer Outlook

It's always hot, but how hot will it be this summer? I believe in setting goals and we have one this summer. Let's NOT hit 100°! Last summer, we did not hit 100° even though we came very close several times. We have not had back-to-back summers with no 100° heat since 1967-1968. We can do this!

Let's look at summer statistics for Little Rock.

We average 6 days of 100° heat every summer. I do NOT see us getting into triple digit heat anytime soon due to the very wet ground from spring rains. The suns energy will go into evaporation before temperatures can get that high. However, since there's a lot of soil moisture, we will have triple digit heat index temperatures. If we keep getting rain, we be fall short of extreme heat. If we go into a period of dry weather, it will happen at some point.

Also, we need to watch the tropics carefully this summer and early fall. The Gulf of Mexico sea surface temperatures are well above average. We are also going into a La Nina and that favors a more active tropical season. We have already had 2 named storms and the season hasn't officially started yet. If storms develop in the central or western Gulf of Mexico, they will have a chance to bring big rains.

Now the outlooks. First from They are forecasting temperatures 1-3 degrees ABOVE average for the months of June, July, and August. That's HOT! If that happens, it will be due to extremely hot daytime highs and/or above average overnight lows. The latter of the two is very likely due to the wet ground, IMO.

NOAA shows a good portion of the country with a high chance for above average temperatures this summer. However, their confidence level isn't that great over the central United States. They say there are equal chances for average, above average, or below average temperatures.

NOAA shows a good chance for above average rainfall. If this happens, it will help keep us from the extreme heat, but keep those heat index temperatures up there.

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