Weather Blog

Seattle dry streak nears honorary scribble in hallowed weather book

Seattle dry streak nears honorary scribble in hallowed weather book
Page 91 of the "NOAA Technical Memorandum NWS WR-257, Climate of Seattle, Washington" book.

My 5-year-old daughter still has a blanket that she's carried around since she was nearing her first birthday. For me, I have this cherished but well-worn climate book from the National Weather Service, printed in 1998, that shows all the weather records and averages for Seattle.

The NWS has yet to update it after all these years, so it's been up to me to keep it current, and much like an old address book, it's got plenty of my scribbles in it as we've neared or broken records since.

But there is one section that has maintained its pristine, unedited distinction -- the Top 10 record dry streaks in Seattle. Fourteen years since the book was written, and we've never had a dry streak to even near the record of 51 set in 1951.

Yet by Wednesday morning, I might need to break out the old trusty ball point pen and make a new addition, noting that we have a new dry streak of 37 days, stretching from July 22 to August 28, which would put it in a four-way tie for seventh-longest streak. (See note below)

With showers in the forecast for Wednesday, 37 is where the streak might die. But if the showers miss Sea-Tac, long range models do not show any organized weather systems for the next several days beyond. If Seattle manages to dodge any rogue showers or a paltry 0.01" of mist or drizzle measurement, it's at least in the realm of possible we near or even break the all-time record of 51 days.

In any event, I'll have the pen ready.

Tuesday update: It turns out, I had to make a scribble in the book anyway. Dana Felton with the NWS, who compiled the book, sent a note out saying they have discovered an error in the chart and the 41 day streak in 1990 was not correct. So strike that entry and move everyone else up a slot. It means Seattle will be tied for seventh longest streak if it makes it through Tuesday dry.