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Upper 70s for highs in July?

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Sometimes Mother Nature surprises you.

Last week, most of the comments to me about the weather were along the lines of “How long is this heat going to last?” and “Is it hot enough for you?” I gave a Captain Obvious-type reply to most of them: Yes, it’s July in North Carolina. What do you expect?

I will admit that when I saw cooler temperatures in the long-range computer model for this weekend, my first response was disbelief. That model must be out to lunch. It’s late July for goodness sake!

Sunday's high temp

Sunday’s high temperatures could be in the 70s for parts of our area.

As this weekend moved from long range to shorter range, I started to believe it. Yet, I kept my forecast highs on the warmer side of the trend. I mean… it’s still late July in North Carolina.

Today, I’m finally accepting it, and I doubt many will complain. The high temperatures this weekend in Wake Forest will be around 80 degrees – “around” meaning 79 degrees is not out of the realm of possibility. In Butner and Creedmoor, another area for which I forecast, the high on Sunday will likely be solidly in the upper 70s. Wow! Right?

These cooler temperatures at the end of July are rare here, but not unheard of. I checked the records for temperature extremes in Raleigh this morning. Here’s how they stack up:

July 29: the record coolest maximum temperature for the day was 67 degrees in 1984.

July 30: the record coolest maximum temperature for the day was 73 degrees in 1936.

Even if the actual temperatures on Saturday and Sunday are a degree or two warmer than what I am expecting now, this weekend will still be a nice break from the summertime heat. While there still may be some rain around on Saturday as the cold front passes, Sunday will be the perfect day to get out there and enjoy it!