August 2013 summary

August began hot and humid with the temperature reaching 29.3C during the afternoon of 1st August, and moist air being drawn in from the south made it feel even warmer. This proved to be the last of the really high temperatures, though, and remainder of the first week of August brought some lively Atlantic weather systems – a continuation of the pattern that developed at the end of July. There was heavy rainfall often accompanied by thunder and lightning – 12.6mm of rain was recorded on the 5th August, and three-quarters of that fell in the space of one hour.

By the second week of August temperatures had settled down to more normal figures for the time or year. There followed a mixture of sunshine and showers, with many warm and dry days but enough rain to get the grass going again after the heat of July. As the month progressed the showers grew less frequent, and the last week of August saw less than a millimeter of rainfall. Overall, August was a pleasant month and a welcome change from the exceptional heat of July.

August’s rainfall total was 54.2mm, well within the normal range for the time of year. That brings the year-to-date total to 298mm, which is only only 9mm more than we had recorded at this point in the the very dry year of 2010. On the other hand, our rainfall total at the end of August 2012 was nearly double the current figure.

The average temperature for the month was 17.2C, about a degree above normal but nowhere near last month’s exceptional figure of 19.1C. With two warm months in a row, it won’t be a surprise to learn that the summer of 2013 been both the warmest (average 17C) and the driest (102mm) summer yet seen at this weather station, which began recording in September 2007.

September marks the beginning of Autumn and, just in case we needed a reminder, the temperature at 0640 today was just 6.4C.