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Was this year's wet, overcast summer really Edmonton's worst ever?
Environment Canada issued a thunderstorm warning in the Edmonton area on Saturday, August 5, 2017.
Summer 2019 in Edmonton:
- Most rainy days in the past 20 years and ALMOST the fewest "hot" days.
- No other summer is in the top five for fewest 25-degree days AND most rainy days (in the past 20 years).
- There were 55 days with rain in June, July and August and only 18 days where the temperature hit 25 degrees or hotter.
Ask an Edmontonian about Summer 2019 and chances are you'll hear something along the lines of: "What summer?"
Now, it's difficult to quantify statements like "worst summer ever."
Some people enjoyed the cooler, wetter conditions.
AND...most of us can't REALLY remember what the summers of the 1980s or 90s were like.
Most of us were too young, not born yet OR alive and dealing with "unreliable" memories.
So, let's just use the past 20 years and let's use Meteorological Summer (Jun/Jul/Aug).
There have been summers with fewer hot days and summers with ALMOST as many rainy days as this year.
But, there are NO summers that combine the two like this year.
The average number of days with rain is 41.
2019 had 55 rain days!
2016 had 53 rainy days, so it was close.
But, those are the only summers in the past two decades with more than 50 days of rain in that timeframe.
By contrast, 2018, 2017 and 2015 are all in the top five for FEWEST rainy days.
2019 had just 18 days where the temperature hit 25 degrees or hotter.
The average is 27 days. So, we were well below average this year.
BUT, there have been four years with fewer hot days in just the past two decades.
Here's the list of the 5 years with the fewest 25 degree days:
- 2010 - 11 days
- 2011 - 14 days
- 2001 - 15 days
- 2013 - 17 days
- 2019 - 18 days
There's definitely some "recency bias" when people say things like "worst summer ever."
The last few summers have been a LOT hotter and drier.
2018, 2017 and 2015 are on the top five lists for not just fewest rainy days, but also for MOST "hot" days.
And, when you lump in the stats for May...this year starts to look less "special".
But, if you're looking to win an argument about Summer 2019's weather...here's your line:
It had the most rainy days and almost the fewest "hot" days of the past 20 years.