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August 2016 Passes August 2015 as Third Hottest

Third place 

 

One year after New York sweated through its third hottest August on record, August 2016 was a wee bit hotter, by 0.2 degrees.  This margin was due to warmer nights (71.8° vs. 71.0°) as the average high of 86.6° was a bit below last year's 86.9°.  And after July 2016 was the wettest in seven years, August reverted to the dryness of the first half of the year as its 1.97" made it the driest August in twenty years.  However, what August and July had in common were cool starts as July 1-4 was 3.6 degrees below average and Aug. 1-4 was 2.8 degrees cooler than average.  Another similarity was five-day heat waves (July 21-25 and Aug. 11-15), making this the first summer since 2002 to have two heat waves that were five days or longer. 

 

Here are  further details about August 2016: 

  • August had seven days in the 90s.  Interestingly, there have been twelve Augusts with ten or more 90-degree days, with all but one of them cooler than August 2016.  Why?  Like July, it was due to an absence of any sustained period of cool air.  The coolest high was 79° (on two dates), and the most below average day was just 3 degrees below average.  (August 2005, the second hottest on record, also had fewer than ten 90-degree days.)  In addition to the seven 90-degree days there were also five days with highs of 88° or 89° (all in the last two weeks).

 

Augusts 10 or More 90 Deg Days

  • Aug. 13, with a high of 96/81, was the hottest day of the year, passing July 23 and its high/low of 96/80.  However, when the heat indexes of each day are compared, the two days weren't close.  Aug. 13 was very humid and the heat index reached an unbearable 110° while July 23 had low humidity, which produced a heat index that was a few degrees below the air temperature.  For five consecutive days (Aug. 10-14) dew points never fell below 70°, and during those days heat indexes remained above 90° until nearly midnight.   
  • The 16-day streak of above average mean temperatures from Aug. 6-21 was the longest streak of the year.  Then two days after it ended a refreshing low of 61° was the "chilliest" reading since 6/18.  (Then unseasonably warm conditions returned for the final week of the month.)
  • A very fascinating thing happened on Aug. 25, when the year's total precipitation matched exactly the amount on that date last year - 26.92" (more than five inches below average).  And this continued for a few more days.
  • This August joined five others that were hot and dry.

 

Hot Dry Augusts

  • In the 12-day period from Aug. 11-22, measurable rain fell on ten of the days - but the amount that fell was a modest 1.90" (by contrast, a similar rainy stretch in the first half of Sept. 1974. saw 7.40" fall).  And much of the rain fell in just a half-hour period on Aug. 20 when 0.82" poured down during lunchtime - this was the same localized afternoon rainstorm that dumped three to five inches of rain on the north shore of Long Island.

 

Dry Rainy Periods

  • Both August 2016 and 2015 were hotter than July.  This was just the sixth time that back-to-back Augusts had this distinction.  And although the difference between August's and July's mean temperatures in 2016 and 2015 was minimal, this was because July of both years was well above average in temperature.

 

Aug Hotter Than July

  • Finally, July and August 2016 became the fifth hottest July-August combination on record, 0.1 degree ahead of July and August of 2015.  And this summer joined fourteen others that had two or more days with 80-degree lows, with one each in July and August.

 

Hottest JulyAug Combos

 

Hot forecast
The typical weather map in August 2016.


 

 

 

   

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Today in New York Weather History: August 27

 

1971

Rain from tropical storm Doria moved in shortly before daybreak and continued through early evening.  Rain fell heaviest between 1-3:00 PM, when 1.76" came down.  In total, 4.16" was measured - a record for the date.  Winds gusting to 40-50 mph accompanied the rain.  A second round of rain would dump an additional 1.80" between 1-7:00 AM on Aug. 28.  Rainfall amounts were even greater in New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania. 

 

Tropical_storm_doria    

1980

It was hot, hot, HOT, with a blistering high of 97°, sixteen degrees above average.

1987

The 0.39" of rain that fell between 5-6 AM was the first measurable rain since Aug. 10.

1989

This was the sixth day this month with a low in the 50s, the most in August in the 1970-2021 period (tied in 2007). 

1990

Today was the year's last reading in the 90s, on par with the average date for this occurrence.  In total, the year had a dozen days in the 90s - well below the average of eighteen days.  Between Aug. 3 and today, twelve days had morning lows of 68° or 69°.

2003

Today's low of 72° was the last low in the 70s of the year, more than two weeks earlier than the average date of Sept. 11.  (16 years have had it occur earlier, with 2009 added later).   

2011

During the evening, wind and rain from Hurricane Irene began lashing the area as it slowly made its way northward from the North Carolina and Virginia coasts.  By midnight, 2.88" of rain had fallen - with a lot more to come overnight.  As a precaution, New York's transportation system was shut down at noon and 350,000 residents were evacuated from low-lying areas.

 

HurricaneIrene

2012

In the late morning a quick-forming thunderstorm dumped a half-inch of rain in just 15 minutes, between 1:23-1:38 PM.

2021

It was hot and humid, with a high of 93° (the heat index reached 102°), the third day in a row with a high in the 90s.  Then a thunderstorm moved through late in the afternoon and produced enough rain in Central Park (0.67”, almost all of which fell between 5:15-5:45 PM) to bring August’s rainfall over ten inches.  This was after July had 11.09" of rain, making July-August just the second time consecutive months had 10 inches or more of rain.  (The other time, March-April 1983, has been disputed because the rain gauge in CPK was broken for a good portion of the year).  Just before the skies opened up, the dew point rose to 77°, which was the highest of the summer.  Interestingly, no rain fell in my Greenwich Village neighborhood (just thunder), which is about three miles south of Central Park (while LaGuardia Airport reported twice as much rain as the Park).

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Hot, Wet New York Summers

Kids.in.rain

 

During the summer months clouds, thunderstorms or winds coming off the ocean often prevent temperatures from rising into the 90s.  However, there are occasional stifling days when high temperatures and thunderstorms co-exist, creating tropical conditions that wouldn't be out of place in Bangkok or Manila.  On average New York experiences about four of these days every year; most occur in July and August.  These downpours are usually of short duration (15 minutes up to a few hours).  This post takes a look at some of these summertime days that featured a combination of wicked heat as well as heavy rainfall. 

 

In the summer of 2019 the most tropical conditions were experienced on July 17.  On that day a severe thunderstorm between 8-9 PM dumped more rain (1.14") than what fell in the previous three weeks.  Earlier in the day sauna-like conditions prevailed as the dew point reached the mid-70s, the temperature rose to 93° and the heat index reached 105°.  It also appeared today would be one of those rare summer days with a low of 80°+, but when tonight's storm moved in the temperature dropped to 73°.  Rain continued after the initial storm, adding an additional 0.68", making this the wettest day of the year.  This moisture was from the remnants of what was hurricane Barry, which had flooded Louisiana earlier in the week. 

 

Three days have had highs of 100° or hotter and thunderstorms:

  • July 18, 2012 - High/Low of 100°/73°. 1.76" of rain fell from  severe thunderstorms that moved through between 2:30 and 5:00; most of the rain fell in the two hours between 2:40 and 4:40.  By 4:00 the temperature had fallen to 73°.  Before the storms moved in the heat index was close to 110° and during the early part of the thunderstorms the dew point was in the mid-70s.
  • July 21, 1991 - High/Low of 102°/74°.  0.46" of rain fell during a thunderstorm between 6-7 PM.  The heat index was between 105° and 110°.
  • July 14, 1954 - High/Low of 100°/69°.  0.37" of rain fell during thunderstorms between 10:30 PM -12:30 AM.  This was also the rainiest day of a dry July.

 

The following six days had hot temperatures and more than two inches of rain (ranked in descending chronological order):

  • Aug. 14, 2005 - High/Low of 96°/72°.  After the high temperature was reached around 2:30 PM three thunderstorms between 3 PM and 1 AM dumped 3.10" of rain.  The storm between 7-8 PM produced 1.70" (with nearly an inch falling in a 20-minute period) while the third storm dumped 0.83" between 10-11 PM.  Dew points were in the low to mid-70s and the heat index rose to 104° in the early afternoon.
  • Aug. 8, 2007 - This hot, wet day was different from the others in that torrential rain fell at dawn.  2.50" poured down between 5-7:00 AM, flooding (and shutting down large portions of the subway system).  And a tornado touched down in Brooklyn.  After a low of 73° the temperature rose to 90° in the afternoon.

 

Torrential rainstorm august 8 2007

 

  • July 21 , 1983 - High/Low of 95°/69°.  The 2.26" of rain that fell in the evening became known as the 'Diana Ross Thunderstorm' because it forced Ross to stop her free concert in Central Park when a severe storm bore down shortly after her performance began.  The rain fell heavily for three hours, from 6:30 until 9:30.
  • Aug. 26 1941 - On a day that had a high/low of 93°/68°, 2.30" of rain fell, most of it between 6:15 and 8 PM.  The day before 1.83" of rain in the early afternoon, but the high was only 75°.
  • July 1, 1933 - After a high of 94°, a heat index in the low 100s and dew points in the low 70s, 2.16" of rain poured down between 8:25 (when the temperature was 88°) and 10:45 PM.
  • June 27, 1932 - High/Low of 90°/72°.  Much of the day's 2.11" of rain fell between 8:00 and 10 PM, but there was also a quick downpour between 5:00 and 6 PM.  During the first half of the afternoon the dew point was in the mid-70s.  

 

And here are other days with highs mostly in the mid-to-upper 90s along with significant rainfall:

  • July 22, 2020 - High/Low of 92°/72° and 1.42" of rain, most of which fell between 6:30 and 7:30 PM during a severe thunderstorm.  The day's low had been 77° but fell into the low 70s during the storm.
  • July 25, 2016 - High/Low of 93°/73° and an inch of rain, which fell from 2:45 until 5:45 PM. During the thunderstorms the dew point rose to 77°
  • July 30, 2015 - A sultry high/low of 87°/76° was accompanied by a series of downpours and thunderstorms that produced 1.95" of rain between 1:00 and 5:00 PM.  During a 20-minute period between 1:24 and 1:44 an inch of rain poured down.  Afternoon dew points were in the oppressive mid-70s and the heat index reached the mid-90s before the rain moved in.J
  • July 7, 2012 - High/Low of 97°/72° and 0.50" of rain.  The rain fell during a late thunderstorm between 10 PM and midnight.
  • July 18, 2006 - High/Low of 95°/71° and 0.69" of rain.  Most of the rain was measured between 10-11 PM.
  • Aug. 2, 2002 - High/Low of 97°/70° and 0.70" of rain.  0.42" poured down in a 15-minute period between 8:15 and 8:30 PM.
  • July 8, 1994 - High/Low of 94°/73° and 0.82" inches of rain.  Much of the rain (0.70") fell from a thunderstorm between 3-4 PM.
  • Aug. 28, 1993 - High/Low of 95°/71° and 0.53" of rain.  All of the rain fell in an hour between 5-6 PM.
  • July 23, 1991 - High/Low of 99°/72° and 0.53" of rain.  A thunderstorm between 5:30 and 7 PM brought all of the rain.
  • July 17, 1988 - High/Low of 94°/71° and 1.21" of rain.  A strong thunderstorm dumped an inch of rain in an hour between 6:30 and 7:30 PM.  Earlier in the day there had also been showers in the wee hours of the morning.
  • July 1, 1971 - High/Low of 94°/73° and 1.56" of rain.  Thunderstorms moved in after 3 PM, with much of the rain falling from two storms between 3-4:00 (0.42") and 6-7:00 (0.65"). 
  • July 18, 1969 - High/Low of 94°/77° and 0.88" of rain.  All of the rain poured down in the hour between 4-5 PM.
  • Aug. 7, 1955 - High/Low of 93°/73° and 0.97" of rain.  The rain fell from a mid-afternoon thunderstorm between 3-4 PM and a nighttime thunderstorm between 9:30-midnight.
  • July 28, 1949 - High/Low of 97°/77° and 1.10" of rain.  (No hourly information is available for this month.)
  • Aug 16, 1944 - High/Low of 96°/73° and 0.88" of rain.  The rain fell between 5:30-8:40 PM.  This was the seventh day in a row with a high of 95° or hotter (and tomorrow would be the eighth).
  • July 11, 1940 - High/Low of 92°/67° and 1.94" of rain. (No hourly information is available for this month.)
  • July 7, 1934 - High/Low of 97°/74° and 0.83" of rain.  Rain fell during two thunderstorms between 8-9 PM and midnight-1 AM.  (The National Weather Service doesn't recognize Daylight Time and uses Standard Time year-round for its official records.)  Before the storms moved in the humidity was around 45% range but then jumped above 90% once the clouds opened up.
  • July 28, 1931 - High/Low of 97°/78° and 0.26" of rain.  The heat index was around 100°, and just before a mid-afternoon thunderstorm moved in it was in the low 100s as the humidity rose from 40% to 80%.  The rain fell in a short period of time, between 4:05 and 4:40 PM.
  • July 13, 1916 - High/Low of 94°/70° and 0.97" of rain.  Two thunderstorms produced the rain, between 4-5 PM and 6-8 PM.  Shortly before the storms moved in the dew point was an incredibly uncomfortable 80° and heat index at 3 PM was a wicked 112°.

 

For an entire summer, the hottest and wettest summer is that of 1991.  It was the 12th hottest and had 15.86" of rain (average amount is 12.50").  Second is the summer of 1983 which was fifth hottest and had 13.48" of rain.  Other warm and wet summers include 2011, 2006 and 1984.

 Heat and Rain

 

Rain forest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Trend Towards Fewer Cool Summer Nights (Lows in 50s)

Cool-and-drops

 

In the decades between 1910-1980 the average number of days with morning lows in the 50s during the summer (mid-June thru mid-Sept) was twelve.  Since then the number has fallen sharply, and in the current decade (thru 2019) the average has fallen to 3.4 days.  In 2016, for the first time, there were no lows in the 50s during the summer (1966 had one and six summers have had  two such days, including 2015).  The greatest number occurred in 1940 when there were 33 days.  In recent years the most 50-degree readings was 19 in 1986, and 13 in 2007 (which is the only summer in the past 21 years to have more than 10).  Since 1991 twelve summers have had no lows in the 50s in July or August (including 2014 thru 2019).  There were ten such summers in the years between 1910 and 1990.

 

AVERAGE NUMBER OF 50-DEGREE LOWS 
EACH SUMMER BY DECADE
  2010-2019      3.4
2000-2009      6.4
1990-1999      8.2
1980-1989      8.9
1970-1979    10.8
1960-1969    12.6
1950-1959    11.3
1940-1949    12.6
1930-1939    10.0
1920-1929    16.3
1910-1919    15.1
     
FEWEST/MOST COOL SUMMER NIGHTS
(June 16 - Sept 15)
         
Fewest   Most
1966 1   1940 33
2015 2   1963 27
2011 2   1927 25
1996 2   1926 24
1993 2   1914 24
1983 2   1946 23
1931 2   1918 22
2019 3   1924 21
2013 3   1962 20
2005 3   1986 19
1981 3   1965 19
1971 3   1915 19
1961 3      
Average =  11

 


 

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Recap of August 2015: New York's Third Hottest on Record

Hot.august

 

Just three months after an exceptionally warm May, which was New York's second warmest on record, August 2015 crossed the finish line as third warmest.  Although the number of 90-degree days, eight, was double the average, what really contributed to the month being so warm was the absence of any outbreaks of Canadian air masses.  Every day had a high of 80° or warmer - a first for August (a typical August sees seven days with highs cooler than 80°.)  Only four days had below-average mean temperatures; the most below average was just -1.5 degrees on two days.  Below are a number of other noteworthy findings:  

   

  • An extended streak of 80-degree days that began on July 10 continued through August.  By 8/31 it had grown to 53 days, making it the second longest such streak - and it was expected to eclipse 1944's all-time streak of 59 days (it did). 
  • The month was also characterized by plentiful sunshine, with 23 days that were either sunny or clear.  Cloud cover is measured on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 being clear and 10 overcast.  August averaged a cloud cover rating of 2.1, making it the sunniest month of the past five years (this information is reported sporadically in prior years).  This included sunny/clear sky conditions for the first nine days of the month as well as the final six days.
  • Four years ago August 2011 became the wettest month on record, with 18.95" of rain measured.  Since then the four Augusts that followed have all had less than three inches of rain.  This August measured 2.35", about half the typical amount.  Half of the month's rain poured down during the morning of 8/11.
  • July (2.3 degrees above average) and August (3.8 degrees above average) rank as the fifth warmest July/August combo on record (tied with 1995).  What makes 2015 stand out is that there were a lot less 90-degree days than the other July/August combos ranked in the top 10. 

 

FIVE HOTTEST AUGUSTS
               
  Average   Hottest Days of  
  High Low Mean Temp 90+ 80+ Rain
1980 88.3 72.2 80.3 97 15 28 1.16"
2005 87.1 72.2 79.7 99 9 28 3.96"
2015 86.9 71.0 79.0 95 8 31 2.35"
1988 87.0 70.5 78.8 99 10 26 2.19"
2001 86.5 70.8 78.7 103 8 28 2.56"

 

HOTTEST JULY/AUG COMBOS
         
  Mean Temp Days of
  July Aug July/Aug 90+
1980 79.3 80.3 79.8 26
1955 80.9 78.1 79.5 24
2010 81.3 77.4 79.4 28
1988 79.3 78.8 79.1 23
2015 78.8 79.0 78.9 13
1995 79.2 78.6 78.9 24
1993 80.2 77.2 78.7 30
2005 77.5 79.7 78.6 17
1983 79.5 77.7 78.6 23
1944 79.4 77.8 78.6 28
         

 Sweaty

 

 

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The 'Last Gasp' of Summer - Noteworthy Late Summer Warm Spells

Cool.dog

 

Late season heat waves can be great if your vacation happens to coincide with one of them, or if it occurs over the Labor Day weekend.  However, they can also be unwelcome, especially in years when a hot summer doesn't want to let go of its grip (as was the case in 1980, 1983, 1993 and 2010).  Since 1940 there have been more than two dozen of these last gasps of summer (of at least five days).  Some are distinguished by temperature, others by number of days.  For this analysis I discuss seventeen I found to be of greatest interest. (By "late season" I'm referring to any unseasonably warm spell that occurred between Aug. 20 thru about Sept. 20.) 

 

1947 (Aug. 22-26 and Sept. 7-15)

1947 is the only summer in this analysis with two late warm spells.  The first had an average high of 91°, which was nine degrees above average; the second's average high of 86° was ten degrees above average.  

1948 (Aug. 25-30)

This six-day sizzler merits attention because three of the days had highs in the triple digits and two others had highs of 95°.  With an average high/low of 97/76 this is the hottest of the late summer heat waves.

1953 (Aug. 24 - Sept. 5)

This one is the stand-out of all the late season hot spells - all twelve days were in the 90s, including six in a row with highs of 97° or hotter (two of which were in the triple digits).  This is also the longest heat wave in NYC history.

1959 (Aug. 25 - Sept. 9)

This sixteen-day stretch followed an eleven-day hot spell between Aug. 12-22 that ended when two days had unseasonably cool highs in the low 70s.  Then the heat returned beginning 8/25 and continued for sixteen days.  And there would be an early autumn warm streak of nineteen days from Sept. 22 thru Oct. 9.

1961 (Aug. 25 - Sept. 14) & 1964 (Aug. 22 - Sept. 11)

These two are grouped together because they were very similar.  Both lasted for 21 days, the lengthiest of any of the late summer warm spells.  And both had very similar dates.  1961's was a bit hotter than 1964's, with an average high/low of 89/71 versus 87/65; 1961 had nine 90-degree days while 1964 had seven.  However, unlike many of the periods of unseasonably warm weather, there were no highs hotter than 95° in either year.  1964's sultry period was notable because the first three weeks of August had been very cool, five degrees below average, with just one day reporting an above average mean temperature.  

1973 (Aug. 26 - Sept. 5)

Very similar to the late summer heat wave of 1953, this one featured eight days in a row with highs in the 90s, including highs of 98° on 8/28 and again on 8/30.  For the entire eleven-day stretch the average high was 93°.

1979 (Aug. 25 - Sept. 7)

Although three days were in the 90s, what was more striking was the twelve days in a row with lows in the 70s.  The average low during these days was 74°, nine degrees above average. This warm spell was also distinguished by having the smallest difference between the average high and low, twelve degrees.  The only late summer warm spell with a warmer average low would come six years later (but it lasted only five days).  This warm spell featured a cameo by the remnants of hurricane David, which dropped 1.29" of rain on the morning of 9/7.

1980 (Aug. 23 - Sept. 7)

Half of the sixteen days were in the 90s (five of which were 95+) and three other days reached 89°.  The average high for this stretch f days was 90°, ten degrees above average.  (Fifteen days after this hot spell ended the high reached 94° degrees on 9/22.)

1983 (Sept. 3-12)

The highlight was a high of 99° on 9/11, the hottest reading of a hot summer.  And the mercury hit 97° the day before.  Overall, these ten days had an average high of 91°, which was fourteen degrees above average.

2005 (Sept. 12-23)

This was one of the latest of the late incursions of summertime heat; it was also part of 35 days in a row with highs in the 80s that began Aug. 20.  This five-week period was also very dry, with just 0.33" of rain measured in Central Park.

2010 (Aug. 29 - Sept. 2)

The hottest summer on record extended into the first few days of September during this five-day streak of temperatures in the 90s.  And Sept. 3 would probably have reached into the 90s as well if not for cloud cover brought by hurricane Earl (the AM low was a sticky 75°).  Five days after this hot stretch ended saw two days with highs of 89° and 90°.

2014 (Aug. 29 - Sept. 5)

In 2014 New York didn't experience an extended period of hot weather until late in the summer.  Seven of the eight days saw highs of 88° or hotter, with four of them in the low 90s.

2015 (Aug. 30 - Sept 9)

This eleven-day period began with a five-day heat wave and ended with a three-day heat wave, which included the hottest reading of the year, 97°, on Sept. 8. 

2016 (Aug 26-31)

For the third year in a row late summer featured unseasonably warm weather.   Earlier this summer there were two five-day heat waves, and while this six-day period didn't meet the definition of a "heat wave" (i.e., every day has a high of 90+), these days were eight degrees above average.  

 

Summer

 

2018 (Aug. 27 - Sept. 6)

This eleven-day stretch was comprised of two four-day periods of hot weather at the beginning and end, with three close to average days in between.  Each four-day period had three days in the 90s and three days with lows of 75°+.  The average high/low of the entire eleven days was 88/75°, eight degrees above average.  The average low is the warmest of any late summer hot spell of ten days or longer.

 

 Chart - Hottest Late Summer

Chart - Last Gasp of Summer

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Low Temperatures of 70 Degrees or Warmer: An Analysis

70s

 

A typical year in New York sees 37 days with lows in the 70s or 80s, with the first coming around June 4 and the last on Sept. 11.  (This is nine days longer than the "season" for 90-degree high temperatures.)  In the period 1970-2020, the number of these days has ranged from just 14 in 1992 to 60 in 2005  (2010, the year with the hottest summer, had 55.)  The longest streak of lows of 70°+ is 22 days and it occurred twice, in 1980 and 2010.  There was also a 21-day streak in 1988.  The longest streak of days with lows of 75°+ (which we get eight of each year) occurred in the summer of 2013 when there were eight consecutive days in mid-July. 

 

MOST & LEAST 70-DEGREE LOWS
(Since 1970)
       
MOST   Days First Last
2005 60 June 8 Oct 7
2015 56 May 1 Sept 29
2010 55 June 4 Sept 28
2018 54 May 3 Oct 10
1980 54 June 25 Sept 22
       
Average 37 June 4 Sept 11
       
LEAST   Days First         Last
1992 14 June 8 Sept 9
2009 18 July 16 Aug 26
2000 23 May 8 Sept 12
1975 23 June 19 Aug 26
1976 24 April 18 Aug 28
       

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Summertime in New York as Portrayed by Covers of The New Yorker

The-new-yorker-logo.jpg

 

Covers of The New Yorker not only capture the personality of the residents of New York but also the beauty and humor of the various seasons there.  This post looks at my favorite covers that celebrate summertime in the City, either through humor, childhood memories or the depiction of leisurely stay-vacations in the area. 

 

William-steig-the-new-yorker-cover-june-6-1959
Sweet Relief (June 6, 1959)

 

Abe-birnbaum-the-new-yorker-cover-july-29-1961
By the Sea, By the Sea, By the Beautiful Sea (July 29, 1961)

 

Abe-birnbaum-the-new-yorker-cover-june-1-1963
Congestion on the Hudson (June 1, 1963)

 

James-stevenson-the-new-yorker-cover-august-5-1967
At the Shore (Aug. 5, 1967)

 

Ilonka-karasz-the-new-yorker-cover-august-24-1968
Greeting Their Master (Aug. 24, 1968)

 

Ilonka-karasz-the-new-yorker-cover-august-15-1970
Baking (Aug. 15, 1970)

 

Charles-saxon-the-new-yorker-cover-september-2-1972
Above the Fray (Sept. 2, 1972)

 

Donald-reilly-the-new-yorker-cover-june-10-1972
El Sol (June 10, 1972)

 

James-stevenson-the-new-yorker-cover-august-13-1973
Manhattan High (Aug. 13, 1973)

 

James-stevenson-the-new-yorker-cover-august-23-1976
Far From the Madding Crowd (Aug. 23, 1976)

 

Jean-jacques-sempe-the-new-yorker-cover-august-11-1997
Not a Care in the World (Aug. 11, 1977)

 

Lonni-sue-johnson-the-new-yorker-cover-august-16-1982
Hazy, Hot & Humid (Aug. 16,1982 )

 

Arthur-getz-the-new-yorker-cover-july-19-1982
Perfect Summer Day (July 19, 1982)

 

Heidi-goennel-the-new-yorker-cover-august-20-1984
Life's A Beach (Aug. 20, 1984)

 

Andrej-czeczot-the-new-yorker-cover-july-21-1986
Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer (July 21, 1986)

 

Susan-davis-the-new-yorker-cover-august-24-1987
UV Protection (Aug. 24, 1987)

 

Eric-drooker-the-new-yorker-cover-june-12-1995
Summer in the City (June 12, 1995)

 

Harry-bliss-the-new-yorker-cover-august-1-2005
King Kong & the Super Soaker (Aug. 1, 2005)

 

Roz-chast-the-new-yorker-cover-august-7-2006
Not All Therapists Take August Off (Aug. 7, 2006)

 

Barry-blitt-the-new-yorker-cover-july-23-2007
Hot Fun in the Summertime (July 23, 2007)

 

New yorker - august 2017

I've written a similar post about my favorite wintertime covers.  Large reproductions of these covers, as well as every New Yorker cover (nearly 5,000), are available for purchase on Conde Nast's website.  (And small versions are sold by street vendors throughout midtown Manhattan.)

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January Isn't Always the Coldest, July Isn't Always the Hottest

February

 

A reader recently asked if there have ever been any winters in which February was colder than January.  While it's not the norm, it happens occasionally.  Actually, more often than occasionally - 57 times, or nearly 40% of all years since 1869 (and it happened last winter).  In fact, New York's all time coldest month occurred in February 1934.  Perhaps of greater interest is the fact that there have been 17 winters in which December was the coldest month, the most recent being December 2005.  But the biggest anomaly of all occurred in the winter of 1960, when March was the coldest month!

For the most part, when February and August were colder/warmer than January or July it was when January was milder and July cooler than average.  However, there were six winters when both months were colder than normal (the most recent being in 1978).  And there have been four summers in which both months had above average temperatures (most recently in 2005).

 

August

 

 

 

 


Extreme Weather: New York's Greatest One-Hour Rainfalls Since 1970

Torrential_rain2

 

I've written posts about New York's biggest rainstorms, its greatest daily rainfall totals and rainiest months.  This post adds to the genre by examining the City's most torrential one-hour rainfalls.  Although an inch of rain falling over the course of a day is a generous amount, a few times each year this amount pours down in just an hour - or less; occasionally the amounts exceed 1.50".

 

Although nor'easters and tropical systems are responsible for the greatest rainfall, these amounts are usually spread out over twelve hours or more.  Thunderstorms, on the other hand, are most likely to produce copious amounts of rain in short periods of time.  August has had the highest propensity for these torrential downpours.

 

60minutes

 

The greatest one-hour rainfall to occur in New York since 1970 was measured during the evening of Aug. 10, 2006 when 2.46" fell between 6:11-7:11 PM.  Five other huge 60-minute deluges have occurred around this date as well: 1.91" fell on Aug. 8, 2007; 1.40" fell on Aug. 9, 1976; 1.92" fell on Aug. 10, 1990, 2.09" fell on Aug. 12, 1989 and 1.76" fell on Aug. 12, 2020.  The most recent one-hour downpour of an inch or more occurred on July 8, 2021 when 1.56" fell between 5-6 PM.

 

Flooding_rain_central_park


(Like all of the previous analyses I've written about heavy precipitation, 1983 is a problem because it's rainfall totals were disavowed due to a malfunctioning rain gauge for most of the year.)

 

HIGH INTENSITY RAINFALL - 1 HOUR   
(1970 - 2013)      
       
Date Amount Time  
Aug 10, 2006 2.46" 6:11-7:11 PM  
July 17, 1995 2.09" 10:19-11:19 PM  
Aug 12, 1989 2.09" 12:45-1:45 PM  
Aug 10, 1990 1.92" 6:17-7:17 PM  
Aug 8, 2007 1.91" 4:36-5:36 AM  
July 29, 1980 1.78" 8:30-9:30 PM  
Sept 8, 2004 1.76" 6-7AM  
June 3, 1991 1.75" 9:06-10:06 PM  
.June 2, 2006 1.73" 2:35-3:35 PM  
Aug 14, 2005 1.73" 5:56-6:56 PM  
Aug 2, 1973 1.65" 8:30-9:30 AM  
Aug 16, 1993 1.58" 5:37-6:37 PM  
Oct 1, 2010 1.55" 4:05-5:05 AM  
July 6, 1975 1.43" 4-5PM  
Aug 9, 1976 1.40" 10-11PM  
June 22, 1973 1.40" 1-2PM  
June 6, 1989 1.35" 1:25-2:25 PM  
May 23, 2013 1.32" 2:25-3:25 PM  
Aug 14, 2011 1.30" 1:02-2:02 AM  
July 6, 2005 1.26" Midnight-1AM  
Oct 21, 1995 1.26" 10:45-11:45 AM  
Note: Excludes 1983      
   

 

 

Beginning in 1982, the most drenching rains by 5-minute, 10-minute, 15-minute, half hour, and 45-minute intervals was reported in the monthly Local Climatological Data report.  The greatest amount of rain to fall in five minute's time was 0.63" on Oct. 14, 2011 between 12:36 and 12:41 AM.  (That's an hourly rate of 7.56".)  And there have been three instances where more than an inch of rain fell in just 15 minutes.  Frustratingly, this information is reported on an inconsistent basis (i.e., since 2000 this information is unavailable for 39 months). 

 

Boots_puddle

 

HIGH INTENSITY RAINFALL - 5 MINUTES  
(1982 - 2013)      
       
Date Amount Time  
Oct 14, 2011 0.63" 12:36-12:41 AM  
June 2, 2006 0.54" 2:46-2:51 PM  
July 26, 2009 0.46" 5:23-5:28 PM  
Aug 3, 2007 0.46" 10:16-10:21 PM  
Sept 10, 1992 0.45" 11:15-11:20 PM  
       
15 MINUTES (1982 - 2013)    
       
Date Amount Time  
June 2, 2006 1.25" 2:39-2:54 PM  
Aug 3, 2007 1.06" 10:06-10:21 PM  
Aug 12, 1989 1.02" 12:56-1:11 PM  
Aug 19, 2011 0.94" 6:26-6:41 PM  
Sept 10, 1992 0.92" 11:06-11:21 PM  
       
30 MINUTES (1982 - 2013)    
       
Date Amount Time  
Aug 12, 1989 1.64" 12:53-1:23 PM  
June 2, 2006 1.51" 2:35-3:05 PM  
June 3, 1991 1.47" 9:22-9:52 PM  
Aug 10, 2006 1.33" 6:12-6:42 PM  
Aug 10, 1990 1.22" 6:46-7:16 PM  
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

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