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Goodbye to the 90 warmest days of the year

Weather Headlines

* “Meteorological Summer”, marking the end of what is (historically) the 90 warmest days of the year, ended August 31. As far as the atmosphere is concerned autumn is already here. Forget the calendar on the wall. Give it up for the cool, dry, fickle, Winnipeg-like Summer of ’09!

* Meteorological Summer: all three months cooler than average. (June: -.7 F, July: -3.2 F, August -1.2 F)

* Tracking the L.A. brushfires using new technology. (see below)

* Latest on Hurricane Jimena (just how screwed is Cabo San Lucas?)

* Odds of a respectable Labor Day weekend in Minnesota (so – after the summer you just muddled through are you feeling lucky?)

For answers to these, and other, compelling weather-queries read on.

File of the aftermath of California brushfires. I realize the weather in southern California much of the year is idyllic, but seeing this image really had an impact on me. I can’t imagine having 10 minutes to GET OUT, grab the essentials (family photo albums, contracts, mortgages?) and race out of my house, knowing there’s a good chance I’ll never see it again – upright. Call me crazy, but this puts our winters into perspective. No, a cold front, no matter how severe, will never do this….

Low-orbiting NASA “Terra” Satellite Image of the L.A. “Station Fire”. Conditions improved slightly on Tuesday with lighter winds and higher relative humidity reported. Smoke and ash from the raging fires just north/east of downtown L.A. has been reported as far away as Las Vegas, Nevada.

For a terrific, interactive Google map showing the very latest on the brushfires click here.

The New York Times has a terrific ongoing blog about the flames here.

U.S. Drought Monitor for California, latest data, showing the western half of the state in a persistent severe drought. August, September and October is prime time for wild fires – no significant improvement is likely until winter rains arrive in late October or November.

Low-orbiting “Terra” Visible Satellite Image of Hurricane Jimena, now weakening over the Baja Peninsula, still packing sustained winds of 100+ mph, considering weakened since Monday, when sustained winds were 155 mph.

Projected path of Hurricane Jimena, the strongest winds and highest surf expected to pass just west of Cabo San Lucas and La Paz, Mexico. Yesterday the “Metar” data, the automated hourly weather conditions at Cabo’s airport were not functioning, possibly because of the hurricane nearby. My hunch is that there was some flooding in Cabo, high surf, possibly 5-8″ of rain, but that the very worst of the storm stayed about 30-60 miles west of Cabo San Lucas.

Very little has changed in the weather department – a weak, persistent ridge of high pressure straddling the northern tier states will keep us mostly sunny and mostly dry right into most of the weekend. Any organized shower and T-storm activity should slide off just to our south and west in the coming days (most farms and lawns won’t see a DROP of rain until maybe Labor Day Monday at the earliest). So build a little quality watering-time into your schedule and all will be right with the world.

The holiday weekend looks amazingly nice: dry weather hanging on all day Saturday and probably Sunday as well. By Monday, Labor Day, a southerly breeze may transport enough moisture northward to fuel a few scattered showers and T-storms, but even Monday the majority of the day should be dry. No sweltering heat is in sight (I know, what a shock) but with a little effort you may even be able to work up a sweat Saturday and Sunday with highs topping 80 degrees and dew points reaching 60+, high enough to leave many of us with an uncontrollable desire to go JUMP IN A LAKE one last time!

Paul’s Outlook

Today: Plenty of sun, dimmed by high PM clouds. Winds: S/SW 5-15. High: 75

Tonight: Clear to partly cloudy. Low: 52

Thursday: Warm sun, little change in the weather. High: 79

Friday: Feels like summer, plenty of sun. High: 81

Saturday: Nicest day of the holiday weekend? Warm sun. High: 82

Sunday: Partly sunny, still pleasant – more humidity. High: 81

Monday (Labor Day): More clouds than sun, passing shower or T-storm. High: 78

Tuesday: Showers taper, slow clearing, turning cooler. High: 75

Wednesday: Mix of clouds and sun, less humid. High: 74

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