Weather Blog

How rare are 80 degree days in early May?

How rare are 80 degree days in early May?
Seattle Center on a (rare?) sunny and warm day in early April. (Photo courtesy: Jason Erskine, April 7, 2014)

Perhaps you've heard the news, especially if you've been anywhere near a water cooler the past few days: 

It might hit 80 degrees on Thursday!

Considering earlier this decade, we didn't get to 80 degrees until July for two consecutive years (2010 and 2011), the news is understandably being met with a mix of excitement and confusion: It never gets to 80 in April and early May in Seattle, does it?

Turns out, it does, it just hasn't for a while. Record highs this week are in the low 80s -- 85 on April 30 and 81 on May 1 -- not once, but twice.  While as of this writing, Wednesday's forecast isn't quite up to 80 degrees, if it manages to get there, it hasn't reached 80 in April since 2004.

Anyway, the National Weather Service put out a helpful statement that shows all the climate stats for not just Seattle, but for Olympia, Hoquiam, Forks and Bellingham. Just remember it's essentially a one-and-done for 80 this time around as we'll be back around 60 by the weekend.


PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SEATTLE WA
1100 AM PDT SAT APR 26 2014

...THE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY FOR WESTERN WASHINGTON...

A FEW OF THE LONG RANGE MODELS HAVE BEEN HINTING AT THE POSSIBILITY
OF 80 DEGREE HIGHS IN WESTERN WASHINGTON DURING THE MIDDLE OF NEXT
WEEK. ON AVERAGE...THE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY OCCURS IN THE SECOND
HALF OF MAY FOR THE SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL INTERIOR...AND IN THE FIRST
HALF OF JUNE FOR THE COAST AND NORTHERN INTERIOR. HERE ARE THE
FIRST 80+ DEGREE STATS FOR THE LOCAL CLIMATE SITES IN WESTERN
WASHINGTON.

SEA-TAC AIRPORT (SINCE 1945)

AVERAGE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY: MAY 23RD
EARLIEST 80+ DEGREE DAY: APRIL 1ST 1987
FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS:
2013 MAY 5TH
2012 MAY 14TH
2011 JULY 2ND
2010 JULY 7TH
2009 MAY 29TH


OLYMPIA (SINCE 1948)

AVERAGE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY: MAY 16TH
EARLIEST 80+ DEGREE DAY: APRIL 11TH 2004
FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS:
2013 MAY 4TH
2012 MAY 13TH
2011 JUNE 4TH
2010 JUNE 23RD
2009 MAY 16TH


QUILLAYUTE (SINCE 1966)

AVERAGE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY: JUNE 8TH
EARLIEST 80+ DEGREE DAY: APRIL 1ST 1987
FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS:
2013 MAY 4TH
2012 AUGUST 3RD
2011 AUGUST 20TH
2010 JULY 6TH
2009 JUNE 3RD


HOQUIAM (SINCE 1953)

AVERAGE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY: JUNE 14TH
EARLIEST 80+ DEGREE DAY: APRIL 16TH 1999
FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS:
2013 MAY 4TH
2012 AUGUST 4TH
2011 SEPTEMBER 3RD
2010 JULY 6TH
2009 JUNE 3RD


BELLINGHAM (SINCE 1949)

AVERAGE FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY: JUNE 15TH
EARLIEST 80+ DEGREE DAY: MAY 4TH 1953
FIRST 80+ DEGREE DAY FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS:
2013 JUNE 29TH
2012 JULY 8TH
2011 JULY 24TH
2010 JULY 7TH