Late Season Heat Wave Beckons

In June Tony predicted the hottest temperatures of the season would occur in September. While far from a sure thing, Tony hints that Labor Day weekend is looking mighty toasty.


Heat Wave Builds for Week Before Labor Day

The colloquial saying here in the heart of Appalachia is that the “unofficial” end to summer is Labor Day. With the kids back in school, the county fair season over and fall festivals beginning, there are few complaints about that assertion.

But this year, there may be a big problem with that thinking!

You see there are growing signs of a long late season heat wave that will arrive piece-meal next week, then perhaps turn on full blast next weekend into the first days of September.

What we know for sure is that the heat will ooze in the last week of August with daily highs flirting with 90. Given the relative lack of summer heat that would not be hard to take.

But while our region semi-simmers, much of the Midwest will be flat out sizzling. From Texas to Minnesota and from the foothills of the Rockies to the Arch in St. Louis, afternoon highs will soar into the 95-100 degree range in the days leading up to Labor Day.

Now my favorite supercomputer from Europe is hinting that intense heat will slime its way eastward in the first few days of September. That could lead to our highest temperatures of the summer.

The wild card in the heat forecast is the prospects of a September hurricane. For years now I have marveled how East Coast and Gulf hurricanes can pump up our September temperatures while they stew over the bath waters of our nearby oceans.

While 100 degrees is off the board this September thanks to our surplus of summer rains, a hurricane in the Gulf or Bahamas would have the might to generate mid 90s heat close by to our region in the next few weeks.

The map at the top is a look at the Labor Day projection from the Euro model. That deep red blob is an area where the temperature is soaring into the mid to upper 90s. And at least on this map, the nose of that heat is pointed right at us.

As for full disclosure, the American and Canadian weather models are far more subdued in their heat depiction, both suggesting a continuation of the moderate temperatures this summer. But frankly, I have all but given up on these models as being inferior to the European. So I will dance with the girl that brought me.

Words to the wise then, have plenty of cold melons and beverages in your tailgate cooler next Saturday and don't forget the sunscreen. CATs (certified athletic trainers) and even band directors, plenty of water breaks for the kids as you prep for Friday night football. And as for closing the neighborhood pool, let's wait for the first of fall on September 20th just to be sure.


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