It’s a summer flashback: Friday turns the dial up to 90


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Friday’s temperature will take us 10-15 degrees above normal, an uncomfortable reminder of the summer we thought we left behind.

At this point, it doesn’t really matter if we tease, tie or break a record. The fact is Friday will mark day No. 89 with temperatures at or above 80. For Portland record keeping, 2021 will go down as a very hot year. Portland, Salem and Eugene had the hottest June on record, July was the fifth hottest, and August the fourth hottest in Portland.

We’re starting this day with low temps in the mid-50s. By by the afternoon, highs will reach the mid to upper 80s. And yes — even 90 is possible, especially for places like Salem and the south end of the valley. 

Part of this hot day will be influenced by easterly winds. The gorge will be the spot for the strongest easterly wind gusts up to 35 mph. Easterly winds will also have a warming effect at the coast so expect the beach north of Lincoln City to reach the upper 70s. 

Beyond a week out — we might have a decent stretch of colder and wetter weather. The first chance of rain starts Sunday night. Possible thunderstorms in the mix early next week.

Snow-you-didn’t — yes snow levels drop next week to nearly 6,000 feet. More snowcapped mountains on the way.

Drought update

Only slight improvements for two categories, extreme and severe by a couple percentage points.


SYNOPSIS: Drought conditions continue in Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington due to below-average precipitation and above-average temperatures during spring and summer 2021. The total of March through August precipitation was only 20 to 60 percent of average. In addition to the lack of precipitation, temperatures for June, July, and August were much above average. Although August temperatures were less extreme than June and July, they were still 1 to 4 degrees above average. The lack of precipitation and hot summer temperatures resulted in rapidly-declining streamflow, low soil moisture, and stressed vegetation in the region. Most creeks and rivers in the region are at or near record-low streamflow for this time of year.

IMPACTS: The impacts of these unusually-dry conditions intensified in June and July and continued through August. Streamflow was low through the summer, with many rivers and creeks comparable to 2015 and 2016 levels. This has resulted in restrictions or shortages for some irrigation districts and municipal water providers, although impacts vary greatly around the region. Water temperatures were unusually high in June and July due to the low streamflow and high air temperatures. Water temperatures moderated somewhat in August. High water temperatures, especially when 70 degrees or higher, are detrimental for many aquatic species, including salmon and steelhead. Forests are dry and concerning in terms of potential fire conditions. Reservoir storage is lower than average, and many reservoirs have been drawn down rapidly through the summer to supply water for downstream demands. Low reservoir levels will affect some recreation activities through the fall. Other impacts include reduced agricultural yield and poor pasture conditions, especially where irrigation water isn`t available.

LOCAL DROUGHT OUTLOOK: Prospects for the first significant rainfall of the fall in mid- September will likely bring some drought relief, particularly in terms of fire danger, but one storm will not undo 6 months of record- dry and hot conditions. Looking beyond the coming week, NOAA`s Climate Prediction Center (CPC) produces monthly and seasonal outlooks, in which there is a weighing of the odds of near-normal, above-normal, or below-normal temperatures and precipitation. Both the September and the 3-month September-November outlooks show an enhanced likelihood of above average temperatures. The outlook for precipitation is less certain, with northwest Oregon and southwest Washington being on the edge of an area with slightly- enhanced chances of above-average precipitation for the fall. Long- term improvement of drought conditions will only happen if the region sees average to above-average precipitation through the winter and spring. NOAA`s Northwest River Forecast Center produces forecasts and seasonal runoff calculations of streamflow volume for the time period of April through September for numerous gages in Southwest Washington and Northwest Oregon. Many watersheds are on pace to see the lowest April-September streamflow volume on record.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: The U.S. Drought Monitor is a multi-agency effort involving NOAA`s National Weather Service and National Centers for Environmental Information, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), state and regional climatologists, and the National Drought Mitigation Center. Information for this statement was gathered from NWS and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) observation sites, river and reservoir data from the US Geological Survey, the US Army Corps of Engineers, the US Bureau of Reclamation, and state water resources and emergency management agencies.

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