94 in Portland Sunday; 3rd Hottest of Summer So Far

9:30pm Sunday…

Today was a scorcher, officially 94 at PDX

Todays Observed Highs OrWa 2017

That 94 is the warmest since the early June heat

Hottest Days This Year

For the geeks out there, the afternoon sounding over Salem showed an 850mb temp of +17.2; it’s amazing we made it into the low-mid 90s.  According to my chart from 1999-2009, even the warmest east wind events at +17 have not been able to produce a high temp higher than 90 in Portland in August.  Today was day #7 at/above 90 degrees in Portland, a little more than halfway to our typical 13 day allotment each summer

90 Degree Days Summer Heat

Very little changes the next two days, in fact models warm those 850mb temps another 1-3 degrees.  Marine layer along coastline remains very thin so there won’t be much inland push. The result should be two more days in the lower 90s in the metro area.  Overnight lows remain very warm in the Portland “urban heat island”.  The majority of each night will be spent in the 70s with just some mid-upper 60s after 3am.  Outlying areas will be warmer than normal, but at least down into the upper 50s or 60 degrees.

We are right on the edge of the usual summertime western USA hot upper-level ridge.  And once again there is a “hot” upper-level ridge across southern Alaska as well.  Here’s the ECMWF ensemble forecast of 500mb heights plus anomaly (in color) for Monday:


Notice there is a weak upper-level low offshore, by Thursday the low has deepened and is moving toward the West Coast.


The result is a much deeper marine layer Thursday, maybe even some spots of drizzle and high temps back into the 70s.  As that low moves overhead Saturday (next image) a few showers may show up, similar to what we just saw Friday.  PDX picked up .04″ that day.


If you have a wedding or outdoor event Saturday, don’t freak out yet.  It might just be scattered AM showers, but too far out to see exactly what’s going to happen.  Regardless, the ridge seems to bounce back and Sunday-Monday sunshine and normal temperatures return.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen


8 Responses to 94 in Portland Sunday; 3rd Hottest of Summer So Far

  1. Gene says:

    I’ve wondered about this for a number of years now. Every time we go through a heat wave, Mark and the Channel 12 weather crew mention that we average 13 90-degree days each summer. On the other hand, the KGW weather gang claims that we average only 12 a year. Why the difference?

    • W7ENK says:

      I think the difference is that Mark regularly updates his climate data, whereas the other stations keep reciting the same old stats they’ve had on hand since the early/mid 90s.

      • Gene says:

        OK, thanks — that makes sense

      • PAUL D says:

        That wouldn’t surprise me because it seems like the average should be going up with all the 90+ days we’ve had in the past few years. Leave it to Mark to be accurate!!

  2. runrain says:

    Interesting to see some towering cumulus directly south of Portland this morning. May not amount to much but somewhat unusual, given there’s not much over the Cascades.

  3. W7ENK says:

    I struggle to associate the word “scorcher” with a high temperature of only 94 degrees, but since this Summer has been noticeably cooler, I’ll go along with it.

    Looks like the possibility of some thunderstorms is increasing in the models for later this week. Heard someone in another group mention that the remnants of Hurricane Flossy could get swept into play next week to provide ample moisture along the West Coast. Might warrant watching, but probably won’t happen…

  4. PAUL D says:

    Hopefully we stay below that normal average of thirteen 90+ days this year! (first!)

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