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The dog days of summer are coming

Dog Days of Summer


A "heat wave" occurs when the daily maximum temperature of more than five consecutive days exceeds the average maximum temperature by 5 °C (9 °F). While no one is describing this unusually warm weather as a "heat wave" yet, you may want to keep the phrase on standby and, if you're lucky enough to have one, keep the air conditioner in good working condition, as summer officially begins in three weeks' time.

If the past week is any indication, this season could be a hot one for Southern Ontario. In fact, the Old Farmer's Almanac has predicted a warmer than normal July and August. According to the rural soothsayer publication, the hottest periods will be in early and late June, early July, and mid to late August.

That's good news for many of us who were disappointed with the summer of 2017. The Almanac goes on to say that rainfall amounts will be lower than normal for Southwestern Ontario through the same calendar period. Compared to last year's rain-fest, this year's season-of-seasons should work out well for beach-goers.

There is good news on the severe weather front as well. The Weather Network reports that this summer will be a much less active one for hurricanes coming out of the South Atlantic. Although there is a good chance that it might be a slightly more-active-than-normal season, it won't nearly be as bad as 2017 which saw one of the most active hurricane seasons on record.

"What about El Niño?" you may ask. All indications are that the cycle of warm and cold water surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean will be much weaker than normal this year. With a weak or non-existent El Niño, North America should see near neutral wind shear conditions overall.

The recent spate of hot weather prompted heat warnings across Alberta earlier this month as temperatures soared to 30° and above. In Ontario, we have been enjoying a similar but less severe blanket of warm weather in the latter part of May. Newfoundland was not so lucky as Canadian weather proved just how unpredictable it can be by delivering 30 inches of snow in the last week.

But hot weather and drier-than-normal conditions don't bode well for farmers, gardeners and golf course groomers who might soon be experiencing difficulty in keeping their respective concerns well watered. Although nothing as drastic as a drought is expected in Southwestern Ontario, other parts of Ontario are predicted to fare much better with rainfall amounts. Hot weather can also bring the threat of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes.

Whatever this summer has to offer, enjoy it while it's here because we know it's all too short in this neck of the woods!


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