Ask Ellen: Is it weird we haven’t seen any 80s yet?


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — History always helps us put things into perspective. This spring has given us some nice spans of sunshine followed by some dismally cold days. So far, we haven’t hit that coveted 80 degree mark.

So is that uncommon? The answer: sort of.

Records show that we usually hit our first 80 of the year on April 30. If that’s the case, we are only about two weeks behind schedule.

But things get more interesting when we look at how many years have thrown us our first one this late. Of the 119 years of data we have for the Grand Rapids observation station, there have only been 24 where 80 degrees has arrived this late. That’s roughly 20%. That means 80% of the time, we’ve hit our first 80 by now.

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The earlist ever was on March 14. That was in 2012 when an early heat wave wreaked havoc on plants and crops.

There have only been five years that have held out until June to launch into the 80s. The latest we’ve ever gone in the year without hitting one was in 1924 when the first 80 of the season finally arrived June 12.

We still don’t have an 80 in the forecast yet this season, but climatologically, it is only a matter of time.

Right now, our average highs are around 69 degrees, with 80s usually becoming the normal high temperature in late June and July.

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