Should we expect a record-setting July?

Another month has come and gone. Those of you who felt June 2012 was actually a little warmer than average, were pretty much right — at least for most areas. The results of my June number crunching are below.

June started off warm across most of southern and central Manitoba, with temperatures climbing near and into the low 30s during the first week. Temperatures then began to cool down as a very active weather pattern developed that brought plenty of clouds along with rain nearly every day over the next two weeks. The coolest day was June 12, when temperatures bottomed out just a degree or two above zero at most places.

While this two-week period seemed to be really cool and wet, when you look at it closely you’d see that on most days the high temperatures still made it into the low to mid-20s and the cloud cover helped keep temperatures from getting too cool at night. If the month of June ended a week early, then it would have come in right around average, but during the last week of the month the heat was turned on once again, and we saw high temperatures climb back up into the upper 20s to low 30s, with overnight lows in the mid-teens. When this last week was added in, June 2012 actually came in above average for temperatures, with the Winnipeg region recording a mean monthly temperature of 18 C, which is a full degree above the long-term average. It was a little cooler over western regions, with Brandon recording a mean monthly temperature of around 17 C, or about 0.5 C above average.

Precipitation during June came in near to a little below average over southern regions and above average in the northern regions. Winnipeg reported a total of 62 millimetres of rain, which was nearly 30 mm below average. Brandon reported 59 mm of rain in June, about 15 mm below average. Thunderstorms are the main rain producers for our region in summer, and a number of locations saw some significant amounts of rainfall from thunderstorms in June. In the table you’ll see a list of places that recorded more than 100 mm of rain.

Who called it?

Overall, most of agricultural Manitoba saw near- to slightly above-average temperatures during June, with either below-average, near-average, or above-average amounts of rain! Looking back at the predictions made at the beginning of June it looks to be a toss-up between Environment Canada, the Canadian Farmers’ Almanac and us here at the Co-operator. Environment Canada predicted a warmer- and drier-than-average month. The Co-operator predicted a near- to slightly above-average month for temperatures and a near- to slightly below-average month for precipitation. The Canadian Farmers’ Almanac called for above-average temperatures along with above-average precipitation. It also called for a hot end to the month. So, I will leave it up to you to decide who called it the best.

On to the July forecast: according to Environment Canada, the warm/hot and dry weather will continue into July. It shows all of Western Canada should expect above-average temperatures along with below-average amounts of rain during July. The Old Farmer’s Almanac also calls for temperatures to be slightly above average during July. Along with the warm temperatures it calls for near-average amounts of rain — that doesn’t sound too bad! The Canadian Farmers’ Almanac, if I can decipher it correctly, appears to call for above-average temperatures (they mention hot periods a couple of times). It also looks like it calls for above-average amounts of rain as it mentions stormy weather several times.

Finally, here at the Co-operator, I am calling for temperatures to be slightly above average with a small chance of seeing well-above-average temperatures. Much of the U.S. has been cooking under an extreme heat wave over the last couple of weeks and there is a chance that during July, this heat wave could redevelop and push farther north. If this were to happen we could see a few temperature records fall, but currently no weather models show this.

As for precipitation, it is always a tough call. My gut tells me precipitation amounts will be much like June. Most regions will see near- to slightly below-average amounts, but some places will get hit by strong thunderstorms and they will record well-above-average amounts.

Overall, I think I’m rooting for the Old Farmer’s Almanac to be right!

About the author

Co-operator contributor

Daniel Bezte

Daniel Bezte is a teacher by profession with a BA (Hon.) in geography, specializing in climatology, from the U of W. He operates a computerized weather station near Birds Hill Park.

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