7pm Thursday

Today was an insanely hot day in the Portland Metro area; all official stations were between 102 and 105 degrees.

PDX Observed High Today

Of course this broke a daily record, and came within 2 degrees of our all-time high temperature.

Mark PDX Record High Hot

Up through 3pm most metro locations were running a degree or two cooler than yesterday, leading me to believe we’d top out around 101 to 102 degrees.  Then from 4pm-5pm the hot and dry air overhead suddenly “mixed down” over the city.  No, we didn’t get a dry easterly wind, that had already disappeared in the Gorge.  Instead you can see it by checking the dewpoint.  At 3pm it was 57.  By 5pm it was down to 45.  That’s a very dry airmass poking down to the surface; the reason for the sudden jump in temperature.

Here are a few other temperatures west of the Cascades, notice slightly cooler highs in Salem and Eugene

Todays Observed Highs OrWa 2017

One other unexpected event was the overnight lows; many areas were cooler than I expected, in fact PDX ended up 4 degrees cooler than forecast.  Yet on many hills around town the breeze from the north or east kept blowing, keeping temperatures in the 70s.  The warmest I could find in the metro area was the Sunset Transit Station at 77.

PDX Observed Low Today

So after two blazing hot days we have some cooling coming up…about 10 degrees cooler tomorrow then another 5 degrees cooling Saturday.  That means we’ll spend most of Saturday in the 80s in the metro area…much better than today!

The bad news is that the upper-level ridge, although weaker, is going to linger along the West Coast for another 7 days.  Models have gradually been shifting to this solution over the past two days.  You see that in the 500mb anomaly map from the ECMWF ensembles for Sunday and again Wednesday (click for better view)


This means even though 100 isn’t likely again, temperatures will RISE again Sunday through the middle of next week.  IF we have a high of 90 or above Saturday, it’s likely we’ll see a stretch of 11 days at/above 90 degrees in Portland.  That would be our longest stretch, after 2009 & 2015


There is good agreement among the ECMWF (and GFS) ensembles for the sustained heat for one more week:


But the sudden change about 11-12 days from now is something to watch.  Ensembles from both models are trying to bring a trough much closer to us for much cooler weather about a week before the eclipse…but that’s still a ways off.  Try to stay cool the next 7 days!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

25 Responses to 105 IN PORTLAND: HOTTEST IN 8 YEARS

  1. WEATHERDAN says:

    89 at 3:30 PM. On our way to 93. Our 9th consecutive day of at least 90. Our record is 10 days. Tomorrows forecast is 96. Marks has us at or above 90 until Sunday. That would give us 15 straight. Also that would be 20 out of the last 22 days above 90. Wow! What ever happened to that cool rainy Summer some on this blog called for after last Winter? I will be glad when we drop to the 80,s. Next chance of rain looks to be about the 21st. If so some people are going to be pi**ed. Spending all that lucre just to watch an Oregon rain. Peace.

  2. Still smoky up this way, and forecast to get worse this afternoon. Consolation prize is that the proximity to salt water kept the extreme heat away from me. Maxed out at 87 this week (probably on Thursday, but I was out camping).

    55 for a low this morning. One pleasant thing about this heat wave as opposed to two years ago is the generally drier air and cooler nights.

    So far as the 2nd half of August goes, give me a nice totally clear smoke-free day in Grant County on the 21st and I’ll be happy. Else I might be taking a last-minute road trip to Wyoming.

  3. JohnD says:

    Well, so much for the records–either all time or consecutive all time–(88′ @ PDX today.) We’ll try it again next year. BUT ALSO–for those of us who enjoy it–it has been/is fun having a stretch of bonafide deep summer weather–by any relative standards!

  4. Tyler Mode in Battle Ground says:

    This is the first time in days I can feel cooler air coming in the window…and the sky is dark, blue, not smoky and red! 69 degrees.

    I love what the smoke does for the sunrise and sunsets but I’m ready for our regular NW summer! Blue skies and 80!

  5. Garron 1/3 of a mile from the Hillsboro airport says:

    I don’t think that we’ll get the 11 days in a row of 90’s+. In fact, I’d be really shocked if we make it through the weekend with above 90 degree days. We may fall short a couple of days next week too. For the records dept. I really hope I’m wrong!

    • Paul D says:

      I think you’re wrong. The 7 and 10 day forecasts I’ve seen show all 90+.

    • Garron 1/3 of a mile from the Hillsboro airport says:

      True, I agree Paul, but the biggest problem we may have is today reaching 90, JIMO. And/or if the smoke has anything to do with it, we may have a couple of close calls in the coming week with 90. Plus, I just don’t trust the models, and think that a week out, we “COULD” see a wind reversal, or the high location not in the sweet spot. Kinda like when the forecast high was projected to be 108 + 5 days in advance, I remain a little skeptical. I hope I’m wrong and we DO break the record, but it is a little too far fetched a week out at this point, but I’ll model ride this heat wave like a breeding bull!!

    • Garron 1/3 of a mile from the Hillsboro airport says:

      Paul D. I thought the same thing in response to your post below! I REALLY though we were in for a gloomier August, especially 1/2 half. I just fell like we are due our summers’ being so warm lately. Glad I don’t do the long range forecasts, I ‘d be looking for a new job!

    • Paul D says:

      You nailed it! No 90 yesterday. Yippee!!

  6. Paul D says:

    Check out this map of where the masses will be for the eclipse. West and East coasts are SCREWED unless you’ve planned ahead.


    (forgive me if this doesn’t show up as a clickable link. I have no idea how to do that on this web site)

  7. Weather Geek Bob says:

    Hey Mark,
    Your new morning weather girl needs to liven up her broadcasts a bit. She is quite dull.

  8. Roland Derksen says:

    105F degrees: Wow that is hot! I only saw a high of 88 here. Now, some of that difference is due to our thick smoke layer. The big change possibly coming in 11 days or so doesn’t surprise me. I’ve often seen a major rainfall in the mid- part of the month after it’s been hot for a while. I only fear if we get a major wind with it. No repeat of late August 2015, please.

  9. Tyler Mode in Battle Ground says:

    Started off with a low of 58 this morning. Now 72. Running -3 over yesterday at the same time.

  10. W7ENK says:

    Topped out at 107.4°F today. Just for reference, I checked my nearest “official” (validated) Wunderground station KORMILWA6</a href>, and they had a high of 106.9°F

    So, I was within 1/2 degree, which is acceptable.



    • Gene says:

      And to think it might have been a degree or two warmer if not for the smoky skies overhead . . .

  11. Paul D says:

    I predict normal or below normal temperatures for the last half of August.

  12. JohnD says:

    So Mark, was the persistent haze-smoke not an issue at all today in your view in keeping the high temperatures down? Notwithstanding your–as always–astute analysis, I couldn’t help but feel–coincidence or not–that the temperatures jumped late afternoon when the smokey atmosphere thinned a bit!

  13. Cold spot here. Only 101 today

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