With 2017 riding a cold wave, let’s take a moment to think (usually) warmer and rainier thoughts.
Some notable weather events in Washington from 2016, which for one thing was the second warmest year ever in Seattle:
▪ Seattle accumulated more rainfall in 156 days than the average yearly total of 84 for the past 122 years.
▪ Record rainfall happened at Sea-Tac Airport from Oct. 1 to March 31 with 43.33 inches, beating out the 1950-51 record of 41.65 inches. It rained 119 out of 183 days, which is 65 percent of the time.
▪ There were four months in a row with more than 20 rain days: November 2015 had 20, December 2015 had 25, January had 20 and February had 21. There have never been five months in a row with more than 20 rain days.
There were just 0.28 inches of rain in the first week of January.
January’s temperatures were 1.7 degrees above normal, and February was 4 degrees above normal.
Feb 8: Quillayute hit 70 degrees, breaking the daily record, which was 64 degrees in 1970.
Feb. 9: Quillayute hit 73 degrees, tying its all-time warmest February day from Feb. 26, 1992.
Feb. 9: Sea-Tac Airport hit 63 degrees, making it the warmest February day since Feb. 15, 1996. Olympia was 66 degrees, the warmest February day since Feb. 28, 1992.
Feb. 25: Olympia tied its record of 63 degrees for that date. (The tie was with 1992.) Quillayute reached 70 degrees and broke its record high for that date, which was 67 degrees in 1992.
Feb. 28: The National Weather Service declared the end of the wettest winter on record in Seattle with 22.78 inches of rain.
The first week of March had measurable rain every day, which hadn’t happened since 1919.
March 1: 0.81 inches of rain fell at Sea-Tac Airport, making it the second wettest March 1. Record is 0.84 inches in 1975.
March 10: Winds at Mission Ridge gusted up to 127 miles per hour, Mount Baker hit 109 mph, and Crystal Mountain saw a peak gust of 101 mph.
March 13: Winds came back and hit 66 mph at Seattle’s Discovery Park.
April 7: The record high of 80 degrees at Olympia Airport broke the old record of 77 set in 1996. A record high of 82 degrees at Quillayute and 80 degrees at Hoquiam broke the old records of 68 and 66, respectively.
April 8: Sea-Tac Airport reached its record high for that date with 76 degrees, bypassing the previous record of 70 degrees in 2012.
April 17: Sea-Tac Airport hit 80 degrees for the first time that year.
April 18: Hot, everywhere. Seattle had a record high of 89 degrees for the date, its hottest April day ever. That surpassed 85 degrees set April 30, 1976. Olympia reached its all-time April high with 88 degrees (the previous record was 87 on April 27, 1987) and Bellingham did the same with 79 degrees, inching past the April 16, 1990, record of 78 degrees. It was also the earliest Seattle has ever reached 89 degrees. Previously, the earliest was May 13, 1934.
April 19: Sea-Tac Airport broke the date’s high with 80 degrees, beating out the 1956 record of 74 degrees. Olympia hit 79 degrees and broke its 1950 record of 78. Quillayute also hit a record high of 73, with the previous record set in 1988 at 71 degrees.
April 20: Record highs for the date were set in Sea-Tac Airport at 77 degrees (the old record was 74 in 2009), in Olympia at 80 (teh old record was 78 in 1956) and in Bellingham at 76 (the old record was 73 in 1956).
Sea-Tac Airport hit 80 degrees four days in a row. In the past, only 24 April days had ever reached that mark.
It was the warmest April on record. The average temperature in Seattle was 56.7 degrees (it used to be 53.6); Olympia was 53.2 degrees (it used to be 50.9); Bellingham was 54 degrees (it used to be 52); Hoquiam was 53.8 degrees (it used to be 52.3); and Quillayute was 51.9 degrees (it used to be 50.3).
May 2: Sea-Tac Airport tied its daily record high at 87 degrees, as did Olympia with 78 degrees.
May 7: Sea-Tac Airport reached 82 and broke its record daily high of 81 set in 1987. Olympia tied its record daily high with 1987 at 84.
May 10: Seattle saw its 14th straight day of above-normal temperatures.
May 28: Quillayute had record rainfall with 1.88 inches. Previous record was 1.55 inches in 1994.
It was the driest May on record in Olympia with 0.15 inches of rainfall. Sea-Tac Airport received 0.94 inches, ranking 16th.
June 4: Record highs for that date on the coast. Hoquiam was 97 (the previous record was 84 in 1989) and Quillayute tied the 2009 record of 90 degrees.
June 5: Sea-Tac Airport reached 93 degrees, breaking the record high for that day of 92 set in 1978. Sea-Tac also had a record-warm low temperature for the day of 64. The previous record was 61 in 1978. Bellingham beat the date’s record high with 85, and Olympia also broke its record when it reached 94.
June 14: Lightning struck in Thurston and Snohomish counties.
June 14: Olympia tied its record coldest high for the date at 57 degrees, first set in 1955.
June 15: The morning low in Seattle was 45, making it the coolest June 15 morning since 1949.
The average temperature in Seattle for June was 63.5 degrees, which was lower than last year’s record 67.7.
July 9: Seattle had four days in a row of rain, which hadn’t happened in July since 2011.
July 11: Four consecutive days of 70-plus high temperatures hit Seattle. Around the same time last year, the streak was 29.
July 20: Sea-Tac Airport reached 80 degrees for the first time that month.
July 24: This was considered the driest day of the year, accumulating 0.72 inches of rain since records started being kept in the 1890s.
It was the coolest July in four years with an average high temperature of 76 degrees.
Aug. 12: Temperatures rose to 85 degrees in Friday Harbor, making it the warmest day of the year there. Sea-Tac Airport hit 90 but didn’t set any records.
Aug. 16: For the sixth day in a row, Seattle reached at least 80 degrees, with 83.
Aug. 18: It was the warmest August day on record in Port Angeles at 91 degrees. The old record was Aug. 10, 1981. Paradise on Mount Rainier rose to 76 degrees, which is the normal high for that date in Seattle. Bellingham set a new record high for the day at 88 degrees.
Aug. 19: Seattle saw its record-warmest August night with a low that dropped only to 69 degrees, and tied for its second-warmest night ever. Forks rivaled Honolulu weather at 4 a.m. with 79 degrees.
Aug. 19: Sea-Tac Airport hit 95 degrees for the 58th time. Ever. Record highs for the date were set across the board: 95 in Seattle, 96 in Olympia, 89 in Bellingham, 95 in Hoquiam and 96 in Forks.
Aug. 24: Forecasters speculated that the first and last 90-degree days of the year would be 82 days apart. Last year, the spread was 34 days.
Aug. 26: A record high for the date was recorded at Sea-Tac Airport with 92 degrees, passing the 1986 record of 91.
Aug. 27: The day’s high temperature was set at 1:30 a.m.
Only 0.17 inches of rain fell at Sea-Tac Airport in August. The norm is 0.88 inches.
It was the fourth warmest August in Seattle with an average temperature of 68.7 degrees. The record was set in 1967 with 71.1 degrees, followed by 69.4 degrees in 2013 and 69.1 degrees in 2014.
Sept. 1: In five hours, Seattle received as much rain as all of August. Forks pulled off the same feat in 90 minutes.
Oct. 7: Winds gusted up to 73 mph at Hurricane Ridge, 69 mph at Crystal Mountain, 64 mph at Destruction Island and 59 mph in Quillayute.
Oct. 7: The first significant autumn storm swept through Western Washington, dropping 0.38 inches of rain on Seattle.
Oct. 10: It was the coldest morning of the season, and the low at Sea-Tac Airport dropped into the 30s.
Oct. 13-14: There was a big windstorm forecast for Western Washington. Bellingham got 63 mph winds, Hoquiam had 58 mph, Sea-Tac Airport got 45 mph and Olympia saw 39 mph winds.
Oct. 15: Seattle tallied two consecutive days of record rain totaling 3.11 inches, an inch more than July through September combined.
Oct. 28: The record daily high of 67 degrees was set, stealing the record from 1962.
Oct. 29: Seattle registered 10.05 inches of rain for the month, making it the wettest October on record. The previous record was 8.96 inches in 2003. The normal rainfall in October is 3.48 inches.
Nov. 7: Sea-Tac Airport hit 63 degrees and passed the 2008 record for the date’s high temperature of 62.
Seattle had its fifth-warmest start to November since 1894.
Nov. 8: The temperature hit 65 degrees in Seattle, breaking the old record high for the date of 64 degrees, set in 1952 and 1987. Olympia broke its record high for the day at 64 degrees. The previous record was 62 degrees in 1996. Bellingham had its all-time warmest November day at 72 degrees, passing Nov. 4, 1949, when it was 69.
Nov. 11: Paradise on Mount Rainier had a low of 51 degrees, which had happened on only seven other November days. It also was the ninth consecutive day of 60-degree November weather in Seattle.
Nov. 16: It was the warmest first half of November in Seattle’s history at 7.3 degrees above normal.
Nov. 26: Hurricane Ridge received 25 inches of snow in a 24-hour period.
It rained for 45 days in October and November at Sea-Tac Airport, a new record. The last record was 44 days in 1963, followed by 43 days tied in 1950 and 1947.
In October and November, Quillayute received 46.5 inches of rain, which is about 11 years of average rainfall in Las Vegas.
November was the second-warmest in Seattle with an average temperature of 51 degrees. Every day had above-normal temps. The warmest November was in 1899 with 51.9 degrees.
November also was the second-warmest for Olympia, with an average temp of 47.9. It was the warmest November in Bellingham at 50.4, Hoquiam at 50.6 and Quillayute at 48.6.
Dec. 6: First time there were back to back below freezing temperatures in Seattle since December 2014.
Dec. 7: Seattle had its coldest day in more than a year with a high of 38 and a low of 28.
Dec. 8: Measurable snow (0.8 inches in Seattle) fell in the lowlands for the first time in nearly two years. It was worse at Camp Muir on Mount Rainier at 6 degrees with 74 mph winds, producing a wind chill of -28 degrees.
Dec. 9: Sea-Tac Airport reported 1 inch of snow, making it the snowiest December there since 2013. It was Seattle’s third consecutive day with a high below 40 degrees, which was the longest stretch since February 2014.
Dec. 14: There were six times as many days with highs below 40 degrees in the first half of the month as in all of 2015.
Dec. 16: It never topped 34 degrees at Sea-Tac Airport, making it the coldest day in 1,044 days. That lasted until Dec. 17, when the high was 33 and colder than Anchorage.
December was Seattle’s coldest month since December 2009 with an average temperature of 37.7. It was the fourth coldest month in the last three decades.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653