Northern Nevada Junes Run Hot And Cool

RENO, NV - You could get whiplash just following the daily weathercast the past few weeks.

Maybe we shouldn't be surprised. Longtime residents will tell you June can be unpredictable.

"If you compare one June with another, some Junes act like they haven't left winter yet and other Junes are getting ready for summer, so they act like summer. This June has had both properties," says Dr. Kelly Redmond of the Desert Research Institute and the Western Climate Center.

Here's the contrast just this week. Monday, 66 and rain. It had some of us reaching for an extra blanket that night.

Just five days later we're pushing 100, hearing all kinds of heat advisories and bracing for several more days of the same.

That cold spell aside, Redmond says this June has actually been warmer than usual.

"We had the earliest 100 degree reading in Reno's history on the seventh, six days earlier than any other year. We had two nights where we had minimums of 67 degrees which ties the record for June for nighttime minimums."

And that fits a trend he's been watching since the turn of the century. Most of those years we've seen our summers getting warmer.

So, we've had a warmer than normal June, about three degrees warmer. That must portend a hot summer. Right?

Actually, it turns out June isn't a good predictor for the summer ahead. This year though, most of the climate models predict a warmer than usual summer. Redmond says that's a good bet.

"I think a lot of that is based on the tradition we've seen over the last decade or so of a series of warm summers. And that's not a bad way to make a prediction."

Why this is happening isn't totally clear. Our global climate is a very complex mechanism, trends are measured in decades or longer, but there is this thing called climate change.

"It's always a cause for a little of what's going on any day because it's constantly present, but there's other things going on too and sometimes those really dominate. Sometimes they dominate less."

Of course, even if there were a definitive answer, it wouldn't cool us off in the days ahead.

June has been a roller coaster, but is leaving us on the hot side. Ahead wait a couple of months in which these kinds of temperatures will come as no surprise at all.

So stay cool, if you can.

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