National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

June 2018 Climate Summary for Eastern Utah and Western Colorado

*Please note that all data mentioned is collected from our automated observing stations from 10 different airports across eastern Utah and western Colorado. Some of our cooperative observers in more remote areas may have measured warmer or colder temperatures, or more or less precipitation than what was mentioned in this summary.*

 

 

As is the norm, June 2018 was a dry and hot month across the area with numerous record high temperatures, generally below normal precipitation and wildfires. One of the biggest wildfires of the season so far, the 416 Fire in southwest Colorado, began on the first day of the month and quickly grew in size due to ample dry vegetation and gusty winds. Several other large fires were started throughout the month. This allowed many areas to frequently experience periods of smoky skies, especially across southwest Colorado where visibility was frequently reduced to a quarter mile or less.

 

Much of the month saw a persistent ridge of high pressure remain overhead which allowed those hot and dry conditions to continue. Several days of triple digit heat were experienced with Moab, Utah hitting 100-plus temperatures 5 times throughout the month. Temperatures were above normal for June with mean temperatures generally ranging from 3 to 7 degrees above normal for the month, based on information collected from automated stations across the area. The highest reported temperature during the month from these stations was 105 degrees which occurred at the Canyonlands Regional Airport in Moab, Utah on June 27th. The coldest temperature of 29 degrees was measured at the Craig-Moffat Airport on June 2nd.

 

Even though June was dry for much of the area there were some exceptions and periods of unsettled weather. Routt County experienced an EF-0 tornado on June 24th, approximately 17 miles NNW of Steamboat Springs. Moisture from the remnants of Tropical Storm Bud moved into the region halfway through the month and brought showers and thunderstorms, generally to the southern half of the area. Both the Cortez and Durango Airports saw a good dose of rainfall from this moisture with 1.00 and 0.53 inches falling in 24 hours on June 17th, respectively. As a result, both automated stations at these airports ended June with above normal precipitation. Cortez received 1.36 inches of rain in June, 0.88 inches above normal, and Durango had 0.84 inches for the month, 0.20 inches above normal. The rest of the automated stations across eastern Utah and western Colorado ended the month half an inch to over an inch below normal. The greatest deficit occurred at the Craig Airport where only 0.11 inches of rain fell, 1.21 inches below normal. Both the Canyonlands and Vernal Airports only received a trace of rain in June.

 

Grand Junction had an average monthly temperature of 76.4 degrees which was 4.4 degrees above normal. The highest temperature was 102 degrees on June 26th and 27th and the lowest was 50 on the 11th. 0.09 inches of rain fell which was 0.37 inches below normal for the month. A few record high temperatures were set or tied throughout the month on June 13th, 14th and 15th.

 

Taking a quick look ahead to July, the official forecast from the Climate Prediction Center (http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/30day/) shows odds favoring warming temperatures continuing across SE UT/SW CO with wetter than normal conditions across E UT/W CO. No clear climate signature favors either above or below normal temperatures for the rest of the area at this time.

 

The preliminary climate summary for some of our automated stations can be found on the attached slide show. For more climate information from other sites, please visit our climate page on our website at http://w2.weather.gov/climate/index.php?wfo=gjt (select the NOWDATA tab for even more sites). You can also follow us on Facebook (@NWS Grand Junction) or Twitter (@NWSGJT).