Last month saw wide temperature extremes across the Inland Northwest.
From May 3 through 12, average temperatures ranged from 7 degrees above normal on May 4, to a whopping 18 degrees above average on May 9 and 11. During the rest of the month, readings were mostly below normal with May 13 reporting an average temperature of 44 degrees, which was 13 degrees down from normal.
Despite the chilly end last month, the average temperature for May was 56.9 degrees, which was 1.8 degrees above normal. The warmest days were on May 9, 10 and 11 with high temperatures of 86 degrees. On May 22, the high was only 50 degrees, about 20 degrees below the normal for that date. The coldest morning was May 1 with a low of 30 degrees, but the airport was still reporting lows in the 30s late in the month. On May 22 and 23, readings dipped to 37 degrees.
Spokane International Airport picked up .80 inches of precipitation. The normal for May is 1.62 inches.
High pressure has built into the region, bringing summerlike temperatures. Conditions are still looking mostly dry and warm until late next week when we’ll have a chance of showers and thunderstorms from a storm system in the Pacific Ocean. Once that system moves out, it looks like a dry and warm weather pattern from about late June into early September, with a few isolated showers or thunderstorms, especially over the higher mountains.
The hottest weather should be around the beginning of July and August. Readings will likely climb into the 90s with a day or two flirting with the 100-degree mark. There are concerns that the wildfire season will be very active across the Inland Northwest this year as many areas have seen below-normal precipitation within the last few months.