Sandy Utah Weather Blog 2013
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December 2013 Climatological Summary

December 2013 - Turned out to be the wettest month in 2013 by far. A major snowstorm arrived on December 19th leaving 6 or more inches of very wet snow. That storm in total produced 1.65" of water content. It was a back beaker to shovel. Fortunately this meteorologist was in central Florida enjoying temperatures in the high 70s and low 80s, leaving my wife to deal with the heavy snow all by herself. This storm left no doubt that we'd have a White Christmas!

Winter began in earnest on December 3, when the first major storm of the winter season hit. Following that storm would be ten days when the temperature would not break the freezing mark. The storm on the 19th was warm and wet, leaving high temperatures for the rest of the year above freezing in the afternoon. This produced a very pleasant holiday season.

With 2.53" of precipitation, December was the wettest of the year. You can see the annual summary for 2013 in the Historical Summary section.

November 2013 Climatological Summary

November 2013 - It was a dry month, but slightly on the cold side. The last day in the 40s was November 20th. Thanksgiving weekend was sunny and pleasant but chilly with temperatures in the upper 30s. The month produced only 0.67" of precipitation. The first snow was November 5th, just 8 days ahead of the average date of the first snowfall.
November 5, 2013 -First snow of the season.

First Valley Snow of the Season: November 5, 2013 - Average First Snow in Salt Lake November 13

October 2013 Climatological Summary

October 2013 - This October was rather cold and somewhat wetter than normal. 1.57" of rain was was almost equal to that of the wet September that preceded it; further helping replenish soil moisture going into winter. The hottest temperature was October 1 with 77.9, the coldest temperature was 26.9 on the 5th, just five days latter. Things were more pleasant the second half of the month, reflecting the more common "nice" weather of the Utah fall.

September 2013 Climatological Summary

September 2013 - The month was fairly wet as Septembers go, 1.62" of rain was a good start at replenishing soil moisture, so that when future snows melt the water will run off rather than sink into the ground. An early FROST hit on the morning of September 28th, about 15 days ahead of normal. Situated here in one of the least windy parts of the Salt Lake Valley. winds were never much of an issue. The LAST 90 of the summer was hit on September 6, there is little probability of another 90 until 2014. Fall goes on until November 30th, so winter is still a ways off.

September 28, 2013 - FIRST FROST The first frost came early this year as the temperature hit 32.0 this morning at 5:15am. Sensitive plants all gave up the ghost.
September 16, 2013 - Since Saturday September 7, 1.42 inches of rain has fallen. Unless the weather turns very hot and dry further watering of lawns may not be needed.
September 13, 2013 - Southwest Monsoon takes charge -Starting on September 7, the southwest monsoon took charge of our weather pattern, bringing very humid air up into Utah. This moisture enabled daily thunderstorms to pop up and dump lots of rain in localized area. Such weather is not uncommon in September. It was during such a monsoon in September 1966 that I first became interested in the weather and started to keep my own weather records. Tomorrow it should being to try out, but that does not mean the southwest monsoon will not return later in the month.

August 2013 Climatological Summary

August 2013 - The month continued dry until the 22nd when the first rain in 38 days fell. Two days later the 24th was the wettest day of the month with 0.44 inches fell. That storm squashed the hot weather, with the highest temperature following the 22nd being 93.6 (96..6 adjusted for thermometer location) on the 29th. A total of only 0.55 inches of rain for August was not unusual as August is normally dry, unless the southwest monsoon really gets involved, which it did not this August.

July 2013 Climatological Summary

July 2013 - The month was incredibly wet as the summer monsoon that does not usually arrive until mid-August got roaring around the fourth of July and returned with vengeance at the middle of the month. 3.49" of rain in July is simply HUGE, a never before seen total.

July 16, 2013 - The Early Summer Monsoon Continues. Last night another monsoon downpour hit. This time over about three hours 0.88" of rain fell. The total for July is now over 3.00", a huge amount.
July 6, 2013 - OK, I agree this is more than "mist." The strongest downpour that I've ever seen in Utah hit during a strong thunderstorm at 5:10 p.m. Within 15 minutes nearly an inch of rain had fallen!. Between 5:15 and 5:20pm nearly one half inch of rain fell (0.48"). The temperature also fell from 84 to 58 in that same time as cold air spilled out of the strong thunderhead. See the data below:

Details on the strongest downpour I've ever sen in Utah - The next to last column is the rainfall, the last column is the rain rate, or how much rain would fall in an hour at that rate. The temperature is in the first column.

July 4, 2013 - FINALLY SOME RAIN! A heavy thunderstorm approached the Salt Lake Valley with lots of cloud to cloud or sheet lightning. Starting at 3am the rain fell hard for 15 minutes and continued until just after sunrise. Total 0.44". Nice!

June 2013 Climatological Summary

June 2013 - This month was incredibly DRY. In fact no precipitation fell during the entire month. June 28th is the driest day of the year in Utah. This year did not change that fact. Often the first week in June is rather wet, that did not happen this year as the wet week was the last week in June. Generally on a hot day the thermometer reads about 3 degrees low. The month ended with 4 100+ days in a row; also an unusual event.

May 2013 Climatological Summary

May 2013 - The month was wet like a normal May should be. May 28 was was exceptionally wet with 1.34 inches of rainfall. Such totals generally occur only 1 or two days per year.

April 2013 Climatological Summary

April 2013 - This was a wet month, just like an April is supposed to be. March, April and May are the generally the wettest months on the year in Salt Lake City.

March 2013 Climatological Summary

March 2013 - This month was simply too dry. With only about 3/4" of precipitation, March set us back on our snow pack buildup. It did meet expectations on being windy; good for kite flying.

February 2013 Climatological Summary

February 2013 - The weather remained COLDER than normal-though not as extreme as January. Precipitation at 0.80" was in the normal range, but dud not help us gain on the slight negative of current snow-pack to normal conditions. The extremes of temperature ranged from a high of 51 or the 19th to a low of 11 on the 12th.

Saturday February 23, 2013 As predicted the Saturday part of the story came in two pieces, only the first piece hit about 10 hours behind schedule. All told about 5" with 0.36" water content.

Friday February 22, 2013 - Our storms are now turning Spring-like. They are warmer and more frequent. This does not mean that we won't have more SNOW, we will, but after each snowstorm the temperatures will recover faster. Wednesday night just a 1/2", and Thursday night into Friday morning about 2".

Sunday February 10, 2013 - The big three day storm at least ended with a bang. After an aborted start on Friday, and spits on Saturday, late last night the snow started in earnest, leaving 4.5" on the ground this morning. Doppler suggest most of the storm is done, but some scattered flurries the rest of the day are possible. My favorite site for Doppler weather radar is Intellicast . They has the best presentation on the net.

Monday February 4, 2013 - So why do we have fog now, but during the last stagnant air episode we did not have any. The answer comes from the warmer temperatures we experienced after the last snow. With temperatures in the 40s last Thursday and Friday - lots of snow melted and a huge amount of water vapor was added to the atmosphere. That moisture provided the key ingredient that was missing in January - water!

January 2013 Climatological Summary

Climatalogical Summary for January 2013

January 2013 - January was very cold. There were three weeks in the deep freeze (January 1 - 25) when the temperature never reached freezing. The deep freeze broke just after a weak storm passed over on the 24th leaving "freezing rain" a rare event in Utah. The last day of the month was the only day when the high temperature exceeded 40. There was a good amount of snow, melting down to 1.32" of water. Data was lost for January 8-9.

Wednesday January 30, 2013 - Today's 1" of snow was much wetter than prior snows this week as warmer temperatures were present. It packed quite well. That single inch produced almost 1/4" of water.

Tuesday January 29, 2013 - Light snow in the morning produced only 0.08" of water from about 1.5 inches of Utah powder. Many areas in the valley received much more snow.

Sunday January 27, 2013 - Snow developed Sunday afternoon and quickly turned from wet snow to Utah powder as the temperatures fell quickly after the frontal passage at 1:30 p.m.

Storm total: 4.5" Water content 0.53 inches.

Friday January 25, 2013 - NBC carried an economically damaging report on the Salt Lake area's poor air quality due to the temperature inversion. They showed Grant Weyman's (KSL meteorologist - the best in Utah) explanation of a thermal inversion.

Utah's quack medical doctors again proclaimed that the air was so bad it was equivalent to smoking 10 packs a day which is JUST NONSENSE, since the make up of cigarette smoke and the air outside is so completely different. Some one need to shut these crazed extremists down. Yes those people with compromised respiratory systems are impacted during these events, but for the rest of us the impacts are negligible.

Thursday January 24, 2013 - A rare "freezing rain" event hit the Wasatch Front during the early morning hours. With most Utahans unfamiliar with freezing rain, the day was one of great joy for auto body repair shops.

While the freezing rain started earlier in downtown Salt Lake City, it did not hit Sandy until about 7:15am.

The freezing rain event happened because the storm was too weak to clear out the dirty and cold air at the valley floor. Rain from the much warmer storm above, froze on impact with just about anything on the ground. Even Salt Lake International Airport, an airport seldom closed due to weather had to shutdown operations for about three hours.

In January 2009, I was headed to the funeral of a missionary companion in Fountain Green, Morgan, County, just up Weber canyon from Ogden. In the valleys light rain was falling as I proceeded northward.

Going up Weber canyon I saw that traffic was stopped about ΒΌ mile ahead. I started thinking “FREEZING RAIN”. I tapped the brakes to confirm my suspicion and found my car start to slide. Indeed it was freezing rain. Since I had plenty of time to slow down, no big deal. But I was worried about the 18 wheelers behind me, would they be able to stop. Soon traffic built up at the bottom of a hill on I-84. This was my first real experience with freezing rain.

The eighteen wheelers pulled up behind me, sliding as they stopped. We sat there for a half hour. Some people got out of their vehicles and quickly fell on the ice. A half hour later a snow plow brought in sand and dropped it on the ice. One at a time we started out going up the hill following the trail of sand.  As we started to move our vehicles slid a bit, but once we made it to the sand, the hill climb went well.

The funeral was delayed an hour due to these conditions.

Weather data and basic software provided by Davis Instruments Weather Vue. See Davis Instruments for more details. recommends Intellicast for the best doppler radar presentation available on the Internet. and Storm as the best moble app"

The meteorologist in charge at is Reed B. Haslam, M.S. Meteorology (1980), M.S. Computer Science (1981), University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah.

© 2013 - Reed B. Haslam - All rights reserved.