Ketchikan people can handle rain.
But even the most water-tolerant among us have been sorely tested by the steady volume of rain pouring down this summer, anxiously scanning forecasts for the next potential glimpse of clear blue skies and the chance to dry out a little.
On Monday, however, Ketchikan’s rain turned from a source of eye-rolling complaint to opportunity for some serious bragging rights.
At about 8 a.m., the precipitation-measuring gear at Ketchikan International Airport (unofficially) recorded the 47th inch of rainfall there since June 1 — topping the previous record for the rainiest summer (June 1 - Aug. 31). And the rain continued to fall throughout the day.
If we’re going to get soaked, we might as well have a record to show for it.
So, what has the summer of 2020 weather been like?
Rainfall was recorded at the airport on 73 of the 92 days from June 1 to Aug. 31.
Noah’s flood entailed 40 consecutive days of rain. Ketchikan had 40 days of recorded rainfall between July 14 and Aug. 31 —with August seeing rain on 29 of 31 days.
Ketchikan had some drenching days this summer. The top rainfall days included 3.51 inches on June 18, 2.76 inches on July 10 and 3.91 inches on Aug. 4, according to National Weather Service data.
However, while each month saw precipitation levels that were substantially higher than normal, the average temperatures for each month were almost exactly at normal levels.
June’s average temperature was 54.3 degrees, just 0.2 degrees above the normal average of 54.1. July came in at 57.9, again just 0.2 degrees above the 57.7 norm. And August, as of Aug. 30, averaged 57.3 degrees, a mere 0.8 degrees below the normal average of 58.1 degrees.
Come to think of it, our local summer temperatures have been about the only thing in 2020 that’s been normal so far.
Congratulations to all who’ve endured the great drenching of summer 2020. Our reservoirs and cisterns are full, and we have a record to show for it.