Hottest rain on record? Rain falls at 115°F in Needles, California

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:19 PM GMT on August 15, 2012

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A searing heat wave rare even for the Desert Southwest sent temperatures soaring to record levels on Monday, with Needles, California tying its record high for the date of 118°F (47.8°C). The temperature might have gone higher in Needles, but a thunderstorm rolled in at 3:20 pm, and by 3:56 pm PDT, rain began falling at a temperature of 115°F (46.1°C). Most of the rain evaporated, since the humidity was only 11%, and only a trace of precipitation was recorded in the rain gauge. Nevertheless, Monday's rain at 115° in Needles sets a new world record for the hottest rain in world history. I don't think many people were outside to experience to experience the feeling of rain falling at 115°, but if they were, it must have been an uncomfortable, sauna-like experience! Thanks go to Dr. Warren Blier of the NWS Monterey office for pointing out this remarkable event to me.

It is exceedingly rare to get rain when the temperature rises above 100°F, since those kind of temperatures usually require a high pressure system with sinking air that discourages rainfall. Monday's rain in Needles was due to a flow of moisture coming from the south caused by the Southwest U.S. monsoon, a seasonal influx of moisture caused by the difference in temperature between the hot desert and the cooler ocean areas surrounding Mexico to the south. According to weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera, the previous record for hottest rain, which I blogged about in June, was a rain shower at 109°F (43°C) observed in Mecca, Saudi Arabia on June 5, 2012 and in Marrakech, Morocco on July 10, 2010. The 11% humidity that accompanied Monday's rain shower at 115° in Needles was the lowest humidity rain has ever occurred at anywhere on Earth in recorded history, according to Mr. Herrera.


Figure 1. True-color MODIS satellite image of California and Arizona taken at 1:25 pm PDT August 13, 2012. Developing thunderstorms surround Needles, CA, and the line of clouds to the southwest of the city would develop into a thunderstorm that brought rain to the city at 4 pm PDT, at a temperature of 115°F. Image credit: NASA.

A "very rare" heat wave for Phoenix
The heat wave that brought Needles' record hot rain has broken an exceptional number of heat records in Phoenix, Arizona the past two weeks. According to the Phoenix NWS office, the "almost unbearable heat" of the first two weeks of August is a "very rare" event, and August 1 - 14, 2012 was the warmest such 2-week period in city history. The average temperature on August 6 - 13 was 100°F or higher each of the eight days, tying the record for most consecutive days with an average temperature of 100°. The temperature peaked at 116° on August 8, just 6° below Phoenix's all-time record of 122° set on June 26, 1990. The forecast for Phoenix call for a bit of relief--highs are expected to be a relatively modest 105° today, and down near 100° by Friday.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of 93L over the Central Atlantic.

93L close to tropical depression status
A large tropical wave (Invest 93L) is located in the Central Atlantic about 700 miles east of Bermuda. Satellite loops this morning show a surface circulation has formed, and heavy thunderstorm activity has increased to the point where 93L should be considered a tropical depression, if the heavy thunderstorms can persist through this afternoon. Wind shear is light, and ocean temperatures are warm, near 28°C. The latest Saharan Air Layer Analysis from the University of Wisconsin shows that 93L has moistened its environment considerably, and dry air should no longer be a significant impediment to development. The 8 am EDT run of the SHIPS model predicts that wind shear will remain in the low range through the weekend, and I expect this system will become Tropical Storm Gordon by Friday. The storm will not affect Bermuda, but residents of the Azores Islands should keep an eye on 93L, which could pass through the islands as early as Sunday night. In their 8 am Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave 93L an 80% chance of becoming a tropical depression by Friday morning.

Elsewhere in the tropics
In the Gulf of Mexico, a fall-like cold front is expected to stall out early next week, and the GFS model is predicting something could start to spin up near the Texas/Mexico border on Monday. Wind shear is predicted to be low to moderate, and cold fronts stalled out over the Gulf of Mexico often serve as the seed for tropical storms.

Most of the models predict development of a new tropical wave off the coast of Africa 6 - 7 days from now.

Jeff Masters

Haboob #7 (nukegm)
Another dust storm rolling into town.
Haboob #7
Strike over the Lake. (weathercts99)
A stunning bolt of lightning over a lake in Chandler.
Strike over the Lake.

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Quoting JrWeathermanFL:
Has a hurricane ever dropped snow?
Quoting HurrAndrew:


Hurricane Noel 2007 (after ex-tropical transition)

Dunno of any more but certain alot have in respect of their energy being distributed.


4.4 inches of snow fell across Newfoundland on October 28-29, 1991 in association with the 1991 Halloween Noreaster (aka UnNamed storm of 1991 or Should-have-been-Henri).


Neither the wiki page, nor the Canadian Weather service's archive is really clear on exactly what factors were at play with the actual snow, but from what I gather, the main extratropical storm in which the actual hurricane formed was probably what was most responsible for the snow, but imo it was really all one big messy weather event--- sorta like how Stan (2005) didn't really drop all that rain on Central America by himself.

Link
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Quoting bayoubug:
What's crazy is the cold fronts coming down drives me nuts..When winter comes we sometimes can't buy a front..

Just wait for winter with those tropical storms rolling in.
Bit of a reverse dictionary this year, no.
I'm baling out for a while, keep calm in the jaws of any adversary.
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Quoting pottery:

Have some Respect there, young fellow.
In case Grothar is not around to admonish you, on behalf of 'old and run-down' people I say.....

well, darn, I can't remember what it was I was going to say......


I call moments like that PMS - Practicing Mental Senility so when I really have it, I have it down perfect. Some days I like to practice alot...
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Quoting washingtonian115:
I'm good Pottery.Just hoping for a cold and snowy winter to happen after this past winters last of it.Well I'm off for tonight.Nite all..

Have a great evening.
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Quoting MississippiWx:


I'm sorry, but I've never "charted" with you before...whatever that means.



As long as you all are charting and not sharting, it's all good. :)
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Quoting pottery:

heheheheh

how you do, Wash ?
I'm good Pottery.Just hoping for a cold and snowy winter to happen after this past winters last of it.Well I'm off for tonight.Nite all..
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting KoritheMan:


I would laugh at you when the time comes, but I am too nice for that. Wait, no. I'm not.

But you're already there...so this is me laughing.

LOL.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32499
Quoting washingtonian115:
FAIL.Lol hey Pottery.

heheheheh

how you do, Wash ?
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Quoting pottery:

Have some Respect there, young fellow.
In case Grothar is not around to admonish you, on behalf of 'old and run-down' people I say.....

well, darn, I can't remember what it was I was going to say......
FAIL.Lol hey Pottery.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

I've got a few more years. You two are already on the way down.


I would laugh at you when the time comes, but I am too nice for that. Wait, no. I'm not.
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Quoting MississippiWx:
Calling it an early night tonight. I'm having some Grothar symptoms. You know, that old and run-down feeling. :-) Goodnight, all.

Have some Respect there, young fellow.
In case Grothar is not around to admonish you, on behalf of 'old and run-down' people I say.....

well, darn, I can't remember what it was I was going to say......
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Quoting KoritheMan:


You'll get there soon. In the blink of an eye.

I've got a few more years. You two are already on the way down.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32499
What's crazy is the cold fronts coming down drives me nuts..When winter comes we sometimes can't buy a front..
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Quoting avthunder:
Don't know the song name but I think it is Stevie Ray.


You take Mary
I'll take Sue
Aint no Difference
Twixt the two
UKMET
Running all around my brain

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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

It's called aging.


You'll get there soon. In the blink of an eye.
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Quoting Bluestorm5:
August 13, 2010:



Just remember, we're rapidly going up toward the peak of season. We still got long year to go.

That's funny.Because that year from August 21-September 29 we were popping out storms left and right like someone laid out some gasoline in the Atlantic and set fire to it.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting avthunder:
Don't know the song name but I think it is Stevie Ray.


Grothar got the musician and I suspect he knew the song as well. It's "Don't Let the Sunshine Fool You" by Townes Van Zandt.
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An interesting article. A snowy winter predicted for the northeast.

Link
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Quoting MississippiWx:
Calling it an early night tonight. I'm having some Grothar symptoms. You know, that old and run-down feeling. :-) Goodnight, all.

It's called aging.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32499
One of my favorite movies to watch when I was living in Minnesota was El Mariachi because it reminded me of Texas. Now that I'm back in Texas I think about snow and watch Carpenters version of The Thing.

I don't believe for a second this tropical season is done. We're right in the peek of the season and I fear we will see some extreme tropical weather. The waters have not been cooled by small storms stirring up the depths of the Atl Basin or the GOMEX.

My gut tells me we're going to see at least one major effecting the CONUS before all is said and done. And those who know me, I am cautiously optimistic that we will be spared something major. But I am concerned not by active seasons but somewhat inactive seasons heading into mid August.
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If nothing else, THE BLOB from Africa has further eroded the dry air that has been ruining our season.
As insane as it looked a few nights ago, its not too impressive, although it is feeding a beautiful plume of
moisture into the basin.

Chances for development?
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Calling it an early night tonight. I'm having some Grothar symptoms. You know, that old and run-down feeling. :-) Goodnight, all.
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Quoting jascott1967:
Anyone who gets this one w/o the mighty google search, give me the name of the song and artist and I'll give you a dollar. Only hints I'll give you is he was a Texas bluesman and songwriter:

Me & this friend streetlife brown
We got a bottle of red and walked downtown
One hand on the jug and one on time
He said I bet you a dollar against this next line

Don't let the sunshine fool ya
Don't let the bluebirds tool ya
Don't let the women do ya
Put your hand in mine

Advice is fine if you've got a mind
To listen to the end that's got the time
But the muse'll get ya if you don't watch out
He's equipped to know what it's all about
Don't know the song name but I think it is Stevie Ray.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Ever been on an interstate after a blizzard?

Ain't nothing peaceful and tranquil about that.


Unless it's an emergency, you don't go out on any road right after a blizzard. And if you live where they are, you know how to drive, not that it's fun or that it's safe. I love'd to walk in the woods after a snowstorm. In Germany we loved to go on volksmarches through the forest in the snow. The beauty of the silence is amazing.
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August 13, 2010:



Just remember, we're rapidly going up toward the peak of season. We still got long year to go.

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Quoting jascott1967:
Funny thing with Levi, he lives in Alaska and was once fascinated with blizzards/snow storms but has shifted his focus to the tropics. I was born and raised in Houston, was fascinated with tropics until I moved to Duluth for 11 years and am more interested in blizzards/snow storms.

There is such a wonderful beauty left by blizzards. Walking outside in the wilderness of Minnesota after a big storm was like looking at the world with a new set of eyes, the lanscape was wonderful, peaceful, tranquil. Walking outside after a hurricane...there is no beauty to it and I've been through 3.

In 1993, the beauty of the snow met the destruction of a hurricane. Anyone remember The White Hurricane?


Oh I've read of that!

For me, it's anything extreme in nature. When I was a kid it was earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanoes (growing up in Calif of course it would be)...then went to tornadoes and hurricanes...I just don't like natural disasters, but at the same time am fascinated by them. When people here think I'm so crazy for liking to live in the UK, that's my first reason...lack of natural disasters, I'll take clouds and rain anyday (even though does flood down in the valley, still nothing like other places)
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Quoting MississippiWx:


Well, you've had fewer mistakes tonight than normal. I blame the phone for the better spelling. :-)

Insult or not, that made me lol.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32499
Quoting KoritheMan:


He didn't even spell it right after revising it. *snicker*


Let me put on my big surprise face.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

I'm on my phone with autocorrect on, don't blame me -_-
I didn't have a smart phone at your age and that was 3 years ago ;)
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I'd thought I never see the day.It appears that the kiddies are watching this show on CN about Lagos with weird ninja powers.What?.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

I'm on my phone with autocorrect on, don't blame me -_-


Well, you've had fewer mistakes tonight than normal. I blame the phone for the better spelling. :-)
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Quoting MississippiWx:


I'm sorry, but I've never "charted" with you before...whatever that means.



He didn't even spell it right after revising it. *snicker*
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Last comment of today. Td-08 is definitely a T.S.. And TD-07 looks like it will fill the Gulf Coast T.S. development scenario.
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3113
Quoting MississippiWx:


I'm sorry, but I've never "charted" with you before...whatever that means.


I'm on my phone with autocorrect on, don't blame me -_-
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32499
Quoting MississippiWx:


I think you just missed the boat with this one. I'm older than you and I knew what it meant. :-p


It's odd considering I'm well-versed in terminology like that.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Hey, I have no problem with how you treat me. Especially after charting with Mississippi every night.

We cuss each other out on chat everyday.


I'm sorry, but I've never "charted" with you before...whatever that means.

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Quoting KoritheMan:

I was also confused by a 14 year old after I clocked out at work today. I gave him the same "kid" treatment I give you, but in the end, I realized that maybe I'm not as sharp as I thought. Oh dear...

Hey, I have no problem with how you treat me. Especially after chatting with Mississippi every night.

We cuss each other out on chat everyday.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32499
Quoting Bluestorm5:
Not 100% dead... we got TD 8 with a chance of being Gordon in 24 hours.
But we are still takling about snow.
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Too many smart people in this room, I think I better stop while I have a dollar.
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Quoting mitthbevnuruodo:


The threat of tornadoes for the year I lived in Colorado, made me happy to pack up back to the earthquakes of Calif!! I used to get nightmares of funnel clouds all around after the watches and warnings! haha That timelapse of the lightnening totally reminded me of Colorado! I would LOVE a good thunderstorm at night here (have heard thunder 3 times in the last 4 years) but NOT like those! LOL
I've has several nightmares of coming face to face with Tornado's.Certainly something I don't want to see coming for me in real life.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting washingtonian115:
Tornado's scare me for some odd reason.I just don't want no swirling mass of convection coming at me and sucking me up and my body getting hammered by debris.


Should add, stories from my grandma probably didn't help, she moved to Calif when my dad was about 6 from Enid, Ok...saw her neighbors house get blown away amongst other things and said she would never live in a tornado region again
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Quoting Grothar:
I saw it first.




Yes!
And we are going to have to suffer the darn thing!

I do so hope, you are going to take full responsibility for it?
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Quoting KoritheMan:

You younguns and your acronyms. I actually had to look that up. Perhaps this is the first obvious sign that I'm getting old when I can't even keep up with someone just a few years younger than me.


I think you just missed the boat with this one. I'm older than you and I knew what it meant. :-p
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TYVM

: )
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Quoting Patrap:
Kori, foul language is not allowed .


We have a lot of young lurkers and that is a explicit Terms of Service flag.

You're right. I do get carried away sometimes. I'll go ahead and fix it.
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Quoting Grothar:



Too easy VZ.


LOL...guess I owe you a dollar.
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Quoting gulfbreeze:
You know it's dead talking about snow in August!!
Not 100% dead... we got TD 8 with a chance of being Gordon in 24 hours.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

You didn't know what SOL meant? Lol.
I was also confused by a 14 year old after I clocked out at work today. I gave him the same "kid" treatment I give you, but in the end, I realized that maybe I'm not as sharp as I thought. Oh dear...
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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