Sizzling weekend on and off the grill

Updated: Jun. 18, 2021 at 6:18 AM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - With almost no change in the overall weather pattern you can expect a repeat of recent weather. Plenty of sunshine, dry, and hot. In fact, Fathers’ Day will be even hotter. That will be followed by a brief change in the pattern and our weather.

Does this sound familiar? Sunny with a few clouds, a slight breeze, hot, and at least somewhat humid. It’s the forecast I gave for each day this week. It’s my forecast for today as well, with just a slight decrease in the humidity. Temperatures again will peak in the mid- to upper 90s on the Caprock with upper 90s to near 100° east of the Caprock.

NEVER leave a child unattended in a vehicle. In today’s heat the interior of a parked vehicle, even with windows cracked, can become dangerously hot in minutes:

Clear and warm again tonight. Lows will range from the low and mid-60s in the west to the low 70s east.

Plenty of sunshine again tomorrow, with a few clouds, a bit of a breeze, and more heat. Highs again will range from the mid-90s to near 100 degrees.

More heat is on tap Sunday, which is Fathers’ Day and the recognized first day of Summer. The day will be mostly sunny with many locations recording triple-digit highs.

Some heat relief arrives Monday with a cold front. The air behind the front is not cold but should drop our highs into the upper 80s to near 90 degrees Monday and Tuesday.

Rain is unlikely, but not out of the question, next week.

You can see when the heat returns in my 10-Day Forecast. It’s available here on our Weather Page and in our free KCBD Weather App. You will find it in your app or play store.

The Sun Pauses

For the past six months, then sun has moved a bit farther north in our sky each day. On Sunday, that journey will pause. The sun will reach its northernmost position and thereafter will move southward. Solstice is from the Latin words for sun and stop: Sol and sisto.

Similarly, on December 21 the sun stops moving southward, pauses, and then starts moving northward. This pause is the Winter Solstice, marking the astronomical beginning of winter.

The Summer Solstice is considered the official start of summer (in the Northern Hemisphere). Based on the amount of daylight, sunrise to sundown, it is the longest day of the year. It’s the day of the year with the earliest sunrise and the latest sunset. Right? Well, no.

The earliest sunrise of the year occurs about a week before the solstice. For Lubbock that is 6:36 AM CDT (5:36 AM CST) from June 8 through June 15. Though the Summer Solstice is still days away, sunrise is now occurring slightly later each morning.

The latest sunset of the year occurs about a week or so after the solstice. For Lubbock, that is 9:03 PM CDT from June 22 through July 5.

This year the Summer Solstice is June 20 at 10:21 PM CDT.

Sunrise to sunset is about 14 hours and 20 minutes on the Summer Solstice. It’s when we have maximum daylight (and the shortest night).

Conversely, sunrise to sunset is about 9 hours and 55 minutes on the Winter Solstice, considered the shortest day of the year. It’s when we have the least amount of daylight (and the longest night). That’s six months away.

Hotter = Closer?

It’s the hottest time of the year, so the Earth and Sun must be nearest each other in their respective orbits. Right? Not in this hemisphere.

It is the tilt of the Earth, and not the distance from the Sun, that causes winter and summer seasons. Earth is actually nearer the sun during the Northern Hemisphere winter, while farther in summer.

Each hemisphere’s hotter months happen when each is tilted toward the sun. The winter solstice (December in the north, June in the south) marks the point when that half of the globe is tilted at its most extreme angle relative to the Sun.

The June solstice is the point Earth’s axial tilt points the North Pole nearest the Sun, which translates to the greatest hours of sunlight of the year in the Northern Hemisphere (and the least in the Southern Hemisphere).

Lubbock Climatology

95° was the high at the Lubbock airport yesterday. That’s three degrees above the average high for the date. The June 17 record high is 112° (set in 2017).

69° was the low reported at the Lubbock airport this morning (unofficial at this time). Lubbock’s June 18 average low is 66° and the high 92°. The record low for the date is 47° (set in 1945) and the record high 107° (set in 1924).

No rain was recorded yesterday or last night at the Lubbock Airport. The total for June so far is 1.00″. That’s 0.52″ below average through June 17. The year-to-date total is 10.61″, which is 2.67″ above average for January 1 through June 17.

Lubbock’s weather record dates from January 1911.

Today’s sunset in Lubbock is at 9:00 PM CDT. Tomorrow’s sunrise is at 6:37 AM CDT.

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