The graphic above (from meteorologist Blake Harms) is the number of consecutive days of 90-degree temperatures in Grand Rapids since the year 2000. We’re at four (July 2-5) and we have a good chance of adding four more days, making it 8 days in a row. The all-time record for Grand Rapids is 11 in a row set way back in 1901. We’ve had 12 years out of 126 years of record when we have had 7 consecutive days in the 90s. The most 90-degree days in a calendar month in Grand Rapids is 18 – set 3 times (1901, 1021 an 2012). The warmest two days in Grand Rapids were July 12-13, 1936 with highs of 106° and 108°. (thanks to Andy Schut who looked that up for us).
Note that in 2012, we had not one but two streaks of 7 days in a row of 90-degree heat. Today (July 6) was the hottest day of that summer with a high of 104°- the hottest day Grand Rapids had since July 12-13, 1936. In 2012, we had incredible warmth in March, with temperatures reaching the mid 80s. I remember swimming in Gun Lake on the last official day of winter. That was the warmest month Grand Rapids has ever had relative to average. Then we had the heat wave in July. It had been dry with high pressure giving us relatively calm winds. I remember thinking all those wind turbines are temporarily useless when the wind is calm – and we had record to near record electricity use do to air-conditioning.
With near record to record amounts of sunshine and warm temperatures, the lakes are heating up. Reeds Lake in East Grand Rapids had a water temp. of 84° Sunday afternoon. The South Haven buoy had a surface water temp. of 77° and at 10 pm, the wind was dead calm, 0.0 mph – not 0.1 mph, but 0.0 mph.
It looks like we get at least 4 more hot days in the low-mid 90s (cooler at Lake Michigan) – then temperatures are back closer to average in the low-mid 80s over the weekend, with the heat building back in later next week.
Yesterday, we had a few showers and thundershowers form along and east of U.S. 131 in the heat of the mid-afternoon. I took the pic. above looking southeast from Comstock Park. The agricultural weather station near Hastings had 0.69″ of rain. The Kalamazoo Nature Center reported 0.04″. The Ford Airport in G.R. had 0.02″ and the thundershower dropped the temperature from 91° to 77° in an hour. Clarksville in Ionia Co. also had 0.02″.
This is storm total rainfall from radar. Note the darker blue areas in SE Kent, extreme E Allegan Co., S. Barry Co. and N. Kalamazoo County. There were thundershowers along the lake breeze in E. Wisconsin, but they died when they came out over Lake Michigan, where the air was cooler. There was no rain in the lakeshore counties of West Michigan (ignore the light blue on the map in W. Allegan, Ottawa and Muskegon Counties…that’s not rain) with the wind coming in off Lake Michigan.
This is today’s Severe Weather Risk Map fro the Storm Prediction Center. There’s an arc of Slight Risk from NW Wisconsin west to Montana and Wyoming. The Marginal Risk Area includes much of the Upper Peninsula. Lower Michigan is in the non-severe General Risk Area, though any storms this afternoon will be very widely scattered.
The National Hurricane Center has named Tropical Storm Edouard in the Atlantic. It’s the most minimal of tropical storms and will turn into a rainy, windy low pressure system in NW Europe. Storms like this would most likely not been given a name in past decades. All five of the named Atlantic tropical storms this year have been weak and short-lived. I do expect this to be a significant hurricane season in the Atlantic, with an above average number of storms and some strong storms, including several significant storms impacting the S and SE U.S. Satellite view here.
High temperatures Sunday included 93° in Lansing and Mt. Pleasant, 92° in Kalamazoo and Ionia, 91° in Grand Rapids and Fremont and 90° at Battle Creek and Coldwater. Cadillac reached 90° and it was a warm 82° on Mackinac Island.
ALSO: Check this out – lightning sets off the fireworks – just west of LIttle Rock, Arkansas. Nebraska supercell with tornado. Windmill at sunset. Wildfire near Payson AZ. Nice pic. of Lake Mendota in Madison WI – with the sun setting behind a towering cumulus cloud in the far distant WNW. I’ll guess rain shaft. National High/Low temps for Sunday July 05: 117 at Death Valley, CA; 26 at 12 miles northeast Sand Creek Station, OR. Check out all the fireworks going off in Los Angeles July 4 night. Pileus cloud or cap cloud.