Drought Feed

Dry Months in New York

Drier than normal

 

For the purposes of this analysis a dry month is one that had less than two inches of precipitation.  In the years since 1869, 18% of all months have been this dry, or about two months each year.  The most dry months in one year is six, which happened in 1910, 1946 and 1965.  The most consecutive months with less than two inches measured is four, which occurred in 1881 from July thru October.  Finally, there have been 15 years in which no month had less than two inches - most recently in 2018 (two of these 15 years were consecutive, in 2010 and 2011).

 

Graph - precip of less than 2 inches by month

 

CONSECUTIVE DRY MONTHS WITHIN A YEAR

The most consecutive months with less than two inches of precipitation is four, which happened in 1881 between July-October (1.25", 0.86", 0.97" and 1.60").  There have been nine other years that had three dry months in a row, the most recent being in 1993.  The smallest amount of rain during one of these streaks was 2.98" in 1910 (July-Sept.).

 

Chart - 3 months in a row with less than 2 inches

 

Two of the three years that have had six months with less than two inches of precipitation, 1910 and 1965, are among New York's ten driest years, but the third, 1946, is ranked 27th.

Five Octobers in a row from 1946-1950 had less than two inches of rain.  And there have been three other months that had this little precipitation in four consecutive years: January 1954-57; May 1902-05 and September 1884-87.  And seven of the nine Novembers between 1901-09 had two inches or less.

 

LESS THAN ONE INCH OF RAIN

Nearly one out of four dry months had less than one inch of rain, or about once every two years.  The greatest number of these very dry months in one year is three and it's happened twice, in 1881 and 1955.  The most years in a row to have the same month report less than one inch is two, which has happened three times: July 1954 (0.96") & 1955 (0.51"); Sept. 1884 (0.21") & 1885 (0.41"); and Oct. 2000 (0.68") & 2001 (0.66").

 

DRIEST MONTH OF EACH YEAR

On average, the driest month of a year has had 1.24" of precipitation (and most likely to happen in October).  About 40% of all years have had less than an inch of precipitation during their driest month.  June 1949 is the driest month of all time, with just 0.02" measured; the driest month in recent years is October 2013, which had just 0.36". The most consecutive years with a driest month reporting less than an inch is four, which was between 1999-2002.  

Thirteen years have had more than two inches as their driest month.  And two of them had more than three inches: 3.04" in 1975 and 3.03" in 2011. 

In both 1980 and 1981 the driest month had 0.58" of precipitation, and it was in consecutive months - Dec. 1980 and Jan. 1981.  And later in 1981, August had 0.59".  Two other years' second-driest month also had just 0.01" more than the driest month (1900 and 1975), while 1926's second driest month had 0.02" more.  And in 2000, 2001 and 2002 the driest months had 0.68", 066" and 0.71", respectively.

In the three consecutive years between 1903-1905, May was the driest month, and in the three consecutive years 1945-1947, October was the driest month.  Finally, in the four-year period 1967-1970 three of the years had January as their driest month (1967, 1968 and 1970).

 

Graph - driest month of year since 1869

 

Arid


June 2020: Warm & Dry

Hello summer2

 

June's temperatures rebounded after a chilly April and May (2.7 and 2.1 degrees below average, respectively).  At 2.3 degrees above average it was the warmest June in 10 years (and 16th warmest overall).  Fourteen days were five degrees or more above average.  Besides being warmer than average, June was also on the dry side, with the least rainfall in 21 years (and 22nd driest overall).  The month had 1.76" of rain, which was very similar to May's 1.65" (like June, May was the 22nd driest).  This was just the sixth time (since 1869) that May and June both received less than two inches, and the first time that consecutive months had less than two inches of precipitation since April and May 2016 .  

 

Based on average temperature, June had the biggest warm-up following May since 2008.  And out of all of the years of measurement it was the 12th biggest warm-up after May (tied with two other years).

 

Although the number of days of 80°+ was close to average (18 days, including the final twelve days of the month), it was well above average for days of 85°+.   13 days had highs of 85° or warmer, with 11 between 85° and 89°.  The two other days had highs of 90° (on June 22 and 28).  At one point there was a streak of seven days in a row with highs of 85°+, the longest streak in June since 2010.  Furthermore, the month's 11 days with lows in the 70s was more than double the average for June.  Only three other Junes have had more lows of 70°+ (2010, 2005 and 1943 had 12; June 1895 had the same number as June 2020).

85 plus
Through 6/26 it appeared the month would easily be among the ten driest Junes as just 0.98" had fallen.  Beginning 6/12 there were 15 days in a row with no measurable rainfall (the longest dry streak since the fall of 2017, which had a streak of 18 days).  Then 0.78" fell in the next three days.  The 0.58" that fell on 6/29 (in less than an hour) made it the rainiest day of June (and a wind gust of 47 mph was the highest of the month). 

 

Finally, the first half of 2020 was the driest since 1995 (16.15" was measured in Central Park, eight inches below average), and among all years it was the 17th driest first half of any year (tied with 1957).

 

Dry

 

Below are links for previous June recaps:

2019

2018

2017

2016

 

 

 

 

 

 


Winters With Snow Droughts Rather Than Snowdrifts

Sled with no snow

 

A number of years ago I published an analysis about periods of cold winter weather that had little snow (Cold & Dry: A Snow Lover's Nightmare).  This new post focuses on the longest periods between snowfalls regardless of temperature.  And while I refer to these snowless periods as "droughts" that's somewhat of a misnomer since a typical winter in New York sees, on average, just twelve days with measurable snow, so it's not uncommon for many days to go by between snowfalls (however, "drought" was catchier than "extended number of days between snowfalls").  But as I was pulling the information together I realized there were variations on snow droughts so I've included them as well.

 

WINTER-LONG DROUGHTS

There have been ten winters with less than ten inches of snow, the most recent being the winter of 2020 (the average snowfall of winters since 2000 has been 33").  In the 1950s there were six consecutive winters, from 1950 thru 1955, with less than 20 inches; and there were five in a row with less than 15 inches, from 1928 thru 1932.  The least snow to fall in back-to-back winters occurred in 1997 and 1998, which had only 10.0" and 5.5", respectively.  (By contrast, there have been 18 snowstorms with greater accumulations than those two winters combined.)

 

No-snow-520x400

 

WITHIN-SEASON DROUGHTS

Since the winter of 1870 there have been eleven snow-free periods that lasted seven weeks or longer.  Two were in the 19th century and were in consecutive winters; all of the others have been since the winter of 1950.  The winter of 1953-54 stand outs for having two droughts among the eleven (that winter had 15.1" of snow).  The winter with the second longest drought, (1983) had the most snow, 27.2" (nearly two-thirds of the snow came from the blizzard of Feb. 17-18).

 

Chart - longest snow-free periods

 

WINTERS IN WHICH ONE MONTH DOMINATED THE SEASON'S SNOWFALL

A number of winters had sparse snowfall in all months but one.  The most recent was in 2016 when January had New York's biggest snowfall of all time.  And it also happened in the back-to-back winters of 1925 and 1926. 

 Chart - winters with 1 snowy month

 

BIG SNOWFALLS FOLLOWED BY LENGTHY HIATUS

  • It appeared the blizzard of Feb. 11-12, 1983 (17.6") would be the last snowfall of the winter, but then more than nine weeks later 0.8" fell on April 18.
  • In the winter of 1892 an eight-inch snowfall at the end of February was followed by 44 days until the next snowfall.  Two winters prior to 1892 there was another eight-inch snowfall, this one followed by 27 days with no snow.
  • On Dec. 27, 1934 11.2" fell and then the next snowfall wasn't for nearly five weeks (but the snow that fell on Jan. 28 amounted to just 0.1").
  • A snowfall of 8.9" on Feb. 26-27, 1991 was followed by 30 snow-free days.
  • On the first day of December in 1882 there was a nine-inch snowfall and then the rest of  the month was snow free.  The streak ended on New Year's Day when 0.3" was measured. 
  • A snowfall of 7.9" on Valentine's Day 1975 was followed by four weeks with no measurable snow.

 

BIG SNOWFALLS AFTER A LENGTHY HIATUS

  • NYC's second biggest snowfall of all-time, 26.9" on Feb. 11-12, 2006, came nearly four weeks after the previous snowfall (two inches on Jan. 16)
  • 15.3" fell during the "Lindsay snowstorm" of Feb. 9-10, 1969, breaking a string of 32 snowless days.
  • During the winter of 1995 a snowstorm of 10.8" on Feb. 4 came 23 days after the previous snowfall, which amounted to just 0.2".  (The Feb. 4 snowfall accounted for almost all of the winter's accumulation of 11.8".)
  • During the winter of 1908 a snowfall of ten inches on Jan. 23-24 broke a string of 39 days without snow.
  • The April blizzard of 1982 dumped 9.6" of snow 32 days after the previous snowfall on March 4 (of just 0.7"). 
  • In March 1981 a snowfall of 8.6" on the 5th broke a snow-free streak of nearly seven weeks.

 

MINIMAL SNOWFALL AT BEGINNING/END OF DROUGHTS

An argument can be made that qualifying a drought as ended when snowfall is less than an inch doesn't really mean a drought has ended since it's an insignificant amount.  There have been sixteen hiatuses of four weeks or longer in which a half-inch or less of snow fell at both ends.  The smallest amounts were dustings of 0.1" at the beginning and end of a 36-day streak in the winter of 1901; this was matched in the winter of 1975 when amounts of 0.1" were separated by 29 days.  Additionally, snowfalls of 0.2"/0.1" bracketed 29 days in between during the winter of 1943, and two 0.2" snowfalls were separated by streaks of 44, 34 and 28 days in the winters of 1992, 1918 and 1934, respectively.

 

SIGNIFICANT SNOWFALLS BEFORE/AFTER SNOW DROUGHTS

Most recently, the winter of 2013 had a 26-day period with no snow that was book-ended by snowfalls of 11.4" (Feb. 8-9) and 4.0" (March 8).  And during the winter of 2009 a snowfall of 4.3" on Feb. 3 was followed by 25 days with no snow which ended when 8.3" fell on March 1-2.

In winter of 1915 a snowfall of 7.7" on March 6-7 was followed by 26 days with no snow and then there was a snowfall of 10.2" on April 3-4.  And earlier that winter snowfalls of 4.4" and 7.7" were separated by 30 snowless days.

The longest drought bracketed by significant snowfalls occurred during the winter of 1906 when a snowless period of 32 days began after a snowfall of 6.0" on Feb. 9 and ended when 6.5" fell on March 14-15.

The winter of 1875 had a four-week period with no snow, with a snowfall of ten inches five days before Christmas on one end and five inches on Jan. 18.

 

SNOW-FREE DAYS BETWEEN WINTERS

The average number of snow-free days between winters is 264 days (or 38 weeks, about the length of a full-term pregnancy).  The longest number of days with no measurable snow was 320 between the winter of 1972 and 1973 (Mar. 15, 1972 - Jan. 28, 1973), followed very closely by the 319-day respite in 2002 (Jan. 20 thru Dec. 4). 

Eighteen winters had their last snowfalls before March 1, the most recent being the winter of 2020, which had its last snowfall on Jan. 18 (2.1" fell).  The winter of 2002's last snowfall (3.0" was measured) happened one day later than 2020's and came just twelve days after the first snowfall.  Although the period between the two snowfalls was minimal, the fact that there was no measurable snow in November, December, February, March or April, makes this winter the title holder of the "Greatest Snow Drought" competition.

Finally, there have been six winters to go out with a bang, so to speak, with their last snowfalls amounting to more than nine inches.  Three were in February, the other three were after the spring equinox.  By far the greatest of these accumulations was the winter of 2010's final snowfall, a monster of a snowstorm, on Feb. 25-26, that buried the City under 20.9" (New York's fifth biggest snowstorm of all time). The other five winters: Winter of 1979 (12.7" on Feb. 19); 1915 (10.2" on April 3-4); 1967 (9.8" on March 21-22); 1903 (9.8" on Feb. 15-17) and 1982 (9.6" on April 6).

 

 

 


September 2016 Weather Review - Summer Hangs On

September songSeptember 2016 was characterized by seasonable temperatures at both the beginning and end of the month and unseasonably warm conditions during the days in between (Sept. 6-23); temperatures during this summery two-and-a-half week period were nearly seven degrees above average.  As a whole the month was 3.8 degrees warmer than average, tying Sept. 1983 and 1884 as the tenth warmest on record (this followed the third hottest August).  Three days had highs in the 90s and seven had mean temperatures that were ten degrees or more above average (one of which was the first day of autumn).  There were just five days with below average temperatures.  The most below average was 9/30, with a high of 59/56 (it was the high that was below average, by 11 degrees) - this was the first day in September with a high in the 50s in fifteen years. 

 

50 Deg Highs in Sept 

OTHER SEPTEMBER HIGHLIGHTS

  • The high on Labor Day was 84°, which was the same as Fourth of July and very close to Memorial Day's high (82°).  This was just the third time since 1970 that that three summer holidays had very similar highs.  But whereas Memorial Day's high was seven degrees above average and Labor Day's five above, 4th of July's was at the seasonal average.
  • On Sept 11 the heat index was 101°.
  • The three 90-degree days in September brought the year's total to 22, five above average and the most since 2010.  The 91-degree reading on 9/14 was the latest high in the 90s since 1995 (when it occurred on 9/15).
  • Although September's rainfall was below average, more fell than in August (2.79" vs. 1.97").  There were no storms that produced an inch or more of rain but three had a half-inch or more (on 9/14, 0.56" poured down in an hour during a late afternoon thunderstorm).  The rainiest day was 9/19 when 0.68" fell.  Since March, all but one month (July, with 7.02") has had below average rainfall, resulting in a deficit of nearly 10 inches in these seven months (20.91" vs. 30.78") .

 

September sun

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April 2016 Weather Recap - Dry, With Average Temperatures

April2016The dry conditions of March (1.17") continued through April (1.61"), but unlike March, which was the fourth mildest on record, April was just about average (+0.3 degrees).  March's warmth, however, extended into April for one day when the high/low was 79/61 on 4/1 (22 degrees above average).  But just four days later the temperature plunged to 26°, which was the coldest reading in April since 1995.  This came in the midst of an eight-day stretch (through 4/10) that saw temperatures that were eight degrees below average.  Temperatures then rebounded for the week between 4/17-23 as highs averaged 75°, twelve degrees above average.  But the month ended on a cool note, with the last five days 3.5 degrees below average.  Some other observations worth noting:

 

  • The highlight of the month was the eleven-day stretch from April 12-22 which had sunny or clear skies every day and extremely low humidity.  Afternoon humidity levels in April are typically in the 40-50% range, but on these days it was mostly between 15-20%.  And on 4/20 at at 6PM it dropped to 9% - the lowest since a reading of 6% on March 30, 2007.
  • March and April were the first back-to-back months with less than two inches of rain since the winter of 2012 - and the driest March-April combination on record (the previous driest was way back in 1885).  The combined 2.78" for these months was one-third the average amount of 8.86".  March was the sixth driest on record, April the eleventh driest.
  • Despite the dry conditions of April, nine of the first twelve days of the month had rain.  The rainiest of the days, 4/4 (when 0.49" fell), occurred the day of the Yankees' home opener, which was postponed.  
  • For the second year in a row the year's first 80-degree reading occurred on 4/18.  This was five days earlier than average
  • Finally, although it had nothing to do with April's weather, on 4/28 the National Weather Service announced that it had revised the accumulation of the big blizzard of 1/23 upward by 0.7", to 27.5".  This new total pushed it ahead of the blizzard of Feb. 2006 (26.9"), making it York's biggest snowstorm on record.  The accumulation that was added had fallen after midnight on 1/24 but had been overlooked.

 

Treeblossoms

 

 

 

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Weather Extremes That Occurred Before Global Warming Became a Concern

November1950noreaster
Runway at LaGuardia Airport flooded during the Great Nor'easter of Nov. 1950

Because we're in the grips of global warming, it seems that every weather anomaly is attributed to the rise in temperatures.  However, unusual weather is a regular part of our climate, with ferocious storms and out-of -the-ordinary heat waves not uncommon in years past.  But it's human nature to forget much of what's come before (or, more likely, to be completely unaware of past conditions).  What follows is a list of more than 50 extreme weather events that New York City experienced in the 20th century.  Today they would cause cries of alarm about global warming, but back in the 1930s, '40s and '50s New Yorkers largely accepted what Mother Nature dished out (and without the benefit of air conditioning!).

 

CRAZY WEATHER OF THE 20TH CENTURY

  • 11.63" of rain fell on Oct. 8-9, 1903.
  • An early June heat wave in 1925 (June 4-6) saw highs of 99°-99°-98° (records that are still standing).
  • Fall 1931 was the warmest on record.  (The six warmest autumns occurred more than 50 years ago.)
  • Winter of 1931-32 was the third warmest ever.  (It was the warmest until the 21st century).  On Jan. 14 the high was 70°.
  • Three of the seven warmest Januarys were in the 1930s (1932, 1933 and 1937)
  • NYC's hottest temperature on record, 106°, occurred on July 9 1936.
  • 1938's Great New England Hurricane/Long Island Express struck in late September.
  • There were 90-degree readings in October 1927, 1938, 1939, and 1941 (and the next occurrence wouldn't be until 2019).
  • The Great Atlantic Hurricane of Sept. 1944 was compared to the '38 New England hurricane; it dumped more than nine inches of rain.
  • Unusually mild March of 1945 and 1946; unusually mild October of 1946 and 1947.
  • The City sweltered through torrid summers in 1944, 1949, 1952, 1953, 1955, 1959, 1961 and 1966.
  • Three days in a row in late August 1948 had highs in the triple-digits.
  • The high reached 72° on Jan. 26, 1950.
  • November 1950 featured highs of 84° and 83° at the beginning of the month, and one of the most intense nor'easters on record, on the the Friday/Saturday after Thanksgiving.
  • The City's earliest 100-degree reading occurred on June 26, 1952.
  • Lengthy late August/early September heat waves broiled the City in 1953 and 1973 (at 12 days, 1953's is still the longest streak of 90-degree days on record).
  • A ferocious nor'easter on Nov. 9, 1953, brought 2.2" of snow, and raked the area with 55-70 mph winds.  Two weeks later there was a four-day streak of 70-degree weather.
  • Flooding rains from tropical storms Connie and Diane occurred in August 1955.
  • The Ash Wednesday nor'easter of March 1962, considered one of the most intense storms of the century, pummeled the Jersey shore and the south shore of Long Island and lasted through five high tides.  Although the City escaped heavy precipitation, gale force winds lashed it for three days, with some gusts as high as 50 mph. 
  • A four-year drought in the mid-1950s was followed by a six-year drought from 1961-1966.
  • Huge rainstorms caused flooding and major disruptions for commuters in Sept. 1966 (5.54"), Sept. 1969 (6.28"), Nov. 1972 (5.60") and Nov. 1977 (9.19").
  • Four days in a row in September 1975 had more than an inch of rain, which amounted to nearly 7.50".
  • A mid-April heat wave in 1976 saw the temperature rise to 96° on Easter Sunday.
  • December 1982 and 1984 were both nearly eight degrees milder than average.
  • 75° on Feb. 24, 1985.
  • December 1989 and January 1990 experienced a wild swing in temperature, with the third coldest December on record (10° below average) followed by the second mildest January (10° above average).
  • A high of 85° was reached on March 13, 1990 - 36 degrees above average.
  • "The Perfect Storm" nor'easter of Halloween 1991 was reminiscent of the Ash Wednesday nor'easter of 1962.
  • An intense nor'easter that struck in December 1992 featured 50-mph winds and a storm surge that flooded the FDR Drive and PATH stations in NJ during AM rush hour.
  • The March 1993 Superstorm/Storm of the Century dumped more than 10 inches of snow; heavy sleet was propelled by 50-60 mph winds.
  • The last four days of March 1998 had an unprecedented streak of highs in the low-to-mid 80s.

Extreme

 

 

 

 

 


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

Hot.augustJust 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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Longest Periods of Time With Less Than an Inch of Rain in New York City

60Days

 

In the fall of 2013 New York experienced a 60-day stretch in which just 0.95" of rain fell (beginning Sept. 23 and lasting thru Nov. 21).  Since 1950 this was the third longest streak with less than an inch of total rainfall, ranking behind one of 81 days in the summer of 1999 and one of 61 days in the summer of 1964.  (Since 1900 New York has had more than 50 months with less than an inch of rain.  However, there have been nearly three times as many 30-day periods with less than an inch that have crossed months.)

 

 

Dry Weather_singin_in_rain2013's long stretch of dry conditions came four months after a near-record period of wet weather in May and June that saw rainfall of 18 inches in just seven weeks.  These two extremes in precipitation may very well balance each other out and result in the year's total precipitation being not far from average (the year would end up with 46 inches, about four inches below average).  And lengthy dry periods don't always mean that the entire year will have below average precipitation.  For example, 2005 and 2006 both had seven-week periods with less than an inch of rain but their total precipitation was well above average (56 and 60 inches, respectively).

 

Chart - Less than 1 Inch of Precip
 


A History of Drought in New York

Clipart_drought

 

Because New York is situated on a number of major storm tracks, it's never suffered a drought so serious that it resulted in tumbleweeds blowing through Times Square.  Of course, dry periods do occur, with the most prolonged being between 1954-1966, but nothing approaching the severity experienced in places like the Great Plains.  Since New York began compiling weather statistics in 1869, there have been 72 months that have received less than an inch of rain (monthly precipitation, on average, is about four inches).  That's about once every two years.  Here are some other dry facts (figuratively speaking) to ponder:

 

  • The last time less than an inch of rain fell in a month was in October 2013.  With just 0.36", it also has the distinction of being the driest month this century.  The second driest month this century was September 2005 when just 0.48" of rain fell.  Interestingly, it was followed by one of New York's rainiest months on record as 16.73" fell in October.
  • Back-to-back-months with less than an inch of rain have occurred only three times: Aug.-Sept. 1881; Dec. 1980-Jan. 1981; and June-July 1999.  The two months in 1999 have the record for the least amount of rain in two consecutive months, 1.03". 
  • Although a month with less than inch of rain occurs about once every two years, the longest stretch was 93 months which, oddly, occurred during the extended dry period in the 1950s and 1960s (Jan. 1956 thru Sept. 1963).
  • The most consecutive months with less than two inches of rain is five, which occurred between October 2001 and February 2002.  The most consecutive months with less than three inches of rain is eleven, which occurred between March 1965 and January 1966.  1965 is also the only year that had less than thirty inches of precipitation (26.09" was measured, about twenty inches below average).
  • October is the month most likely to get less than an inch of rain, having occurred in 13 years (including 2013).  Conversely, it's happened just once in April.
  • The closest a month has come to having no rain was in June 1949 when just 0.02" fell.  However, there have been two rain-free periods that have been longer than 30 days.  The first was 36 days in the fall of 1924 (Oct. 9 - Nov. 13) and the second occurred in 1999 when no measurable rain fell for a 35-day period between May 25 and June 28.  A rainless streak of two weeks or longer occurs, on average, about once every 13 months.
  • Looking at the driest 3-month periods, the driest occurred between July-September 1910 when a total of 2.98" of rain fell.  Three of the top-ten driest occurred in the consecutive years of 1964, 1965 and 1966.  Finally, among the top ten, listed below, the most recent was in 2001. 

 

DRIEST 3-MONTH PERIODS      
(Since 1900)        
           
Year Months 1st Month 2nd Month 3rd Month Total
1910 July-Sept  0.49 1.07 1.42 2.98"
1964 Aug-Oct  0.24 1.69 1.73 3.66"
1908 Sept-Nov  1.91 1.38 0.71 4.00"
1946 Oct-Dec  0.85 1.66 1.61 4.12"
1965 May-July 1.58 1.27 1.33 4.18"
1900-01 Dec-Feb 2.01 1.66 0.55 4.22"
2001 Oct-Dec  0.66 1.36 2.27 4.29"
1966 Jun-Aug  1.17 1.25 1.89 4.31"
1929 Jun-Aug  1.90 1.21 1.47 4.58"
1993 May-July 1.56 1.49 1.70 4.75"

 

 

 

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Today in New York Weather History: June 9

 

1915

Today's high/low of 81°/58° was preceded by two days with a high/low of 77°/60°, and would be followed by two days with highs/lows 77°/59° and 77°/60°.

1933

It was a hot and very humid day, with a high/low of 97°/76°.  The high was a record and the heat index reached 110° during lunchtime.

 

Water hydrant cooling
1973

Today's high was 92°, the first 90-degree day of the year and the first day of a four-day heat wave. 

1980

This morning's low of 47°, a record for the date, was the coolest reading in June in eight years - and there hasn't been a chillier reading since.

1984

Today's high of 96° was the hottest reading of the summer, eighteen degrees above average.  It came in the midst of an early summer heat wave which lasted ten days (June 5-14).  The average high/low during these days was 91°/73°, twelve degrees hotter than average.  Six of the days were in the 90s.

 

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1989

2.55" of rain fell today, with 0.75" of it pouring down between 11 AM-1 PM; another 1.15" fell between 8-11 PM.  This was a record amount for the date.  Furthermore, this was the sixth day in a row with rain, totaling 4.95". 

1997

Twenty of the past twenty-one days had below-average temperatures, resulting in temperatures that were six degrees below average.

2003

Four of the past five days had a low of 57°; the other day had a low of 58°.  Also, twenty-eight of the past thirty days were cooler than average.

2004

Today's high was 91°, which would be the hottest reading of the year, and the first of just two 90-degree days all summer (the other would be on Aug. 28).  Only four other years had 91° or 90° as their hottest reading: 1884, 1889, 1902 and 1960.  A typical New York summer has eighteen 90-degree highs and the hottest temperature is usually around 97°.

 

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2008

Today was a scorcher, with a high/low of 96°/76°, sixteen degrees above average.  This was the third day in a row with highs in the 90s, and tomorrow would be the fourth.

2009

In just fifteen minutes time, in the wee hours of the morning, 0.75" of rain thundered down between 2:41-2:56 AM.  Rain continued until 8 AM and totaled 1.80".

 

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2010

0.89" of rain fell, beginning early in the afternoon and continuing until a little past midnight, breaking a three-week dry spell in which only 0.11" of rain fell.

2011

The day after a high of 93°, today's high reached a sizzling 95°.  Meanwhile, Newark, as usual, out-fried NYC, with highs of 99° and 102°, both which were records. 

2017

For the first time this month the high reached 80°, the deepest into the month that the first 80°+ reading occurred since 2003, when it also happened on 6/9.  Additionally, this was the first 80-degree reading since the three-day heat wave of 5/17-19 ended.

2021

With a high of 90°, this was the fourth, and last, day of a four-day heat wave.  (And the day before the heat wave started, the high reached 89°.)  This was the first heat wave of this length in June since 2008.  And although that heat wave's average high was significantly hotter (95° vs. 91°), this June's heat wave had low temperatures that were significantly warmer (75° vs 70°).  It was also very humid, with dew points largely in the 68°-72° range, producing afternoon heat indices in the mid-90s.  With four days in the 90s through 6/9, this was the earliest date for that number of days since 2000, when the fourth reading in the 90s occurred on 6/2 (ironically, that year would have only seven in total). 

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