The skies opened up, the rains poured down, and Seattle obliterated a record for wettest July 26th on record with nearly an inch of rain in a few hours!
Were you actually in Seattle Sunday and are wondering, "what's Scott typing about? It rained for a few minutes, but record?!?" you're not alone.
Indeed, there was one spectacularly wet rain storm Sunday afternoon that managed to rain over just a small portion of the city -- namely, the spot at Sand Point where the National Weather Service office keeps their official rain gauge.
They are now an official climate station -- just not *the* official climate station; that's still Sea-Tac Airport, but I'm hoping someday years down the road when it has enough data that Sand Point will take over since it's actually, you know, in Seattle. And as an official climate station, they put out an official report on the rain record they broke:
RECORD EVENT REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SEATTLE WA
126 AM PDT MON JUL 27 2015
... RECORD DAILY MAXIMUM RAINFALL SET AT SEATTLE WA WFO...
A RECORD RAINFALL OF 0.90 INCHES WAS SET AT SEATTLE WA WFO
YESTERDAY. THIS BREAKS THE OLD RECORD OF 0. 09 SET IN 2011.
(WFO = Weather Forecast Office):
Yes, 0.90" of rain! That actually broke their office's all-time record July wettest day, which had been 0.89". Their records go back to 1986.
But look at some of the other rainfall totals around the rest of the city and...say what? UW Research Meteorologist Mark Albright shared with me some of the other City of Seattle rain gauges' tallies. Magnuson Park -- which is, what, 6 blocks from NOAA? -- had 0.71" That's 0.19" of rain over a few blocks!
It gets even more amazing: The UW Hydraulics lab -- what, about 30 blocks away? -- had just 0.05" of rain in the shower. The Maple Leaf reservoir? 0.04". The Ballard Locks and Woodland Park Zoo reported no rain. Officially, Sea-Tac Airport had 0.08".
Here's a graphic showing the isolated nature of the rain. Note the big bright blob over Sand Point!
Note, since only that 0.08" fell at Sea-Tac Airport, we stand at 0.09" for the month, the 9th driest on record, despite the nearly inch of rain that fell in the city itself!