“Here comes the sun, here comes the sun,
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes …”
~ George Harrison, music & lyrics
As the week began, forces of cataclysmic proportion came together … good, bad and/or otherwise. As expected, June came loaded with events – graduations, weddings, the end of school and the start of summer vacations. But this year was like none other. Somehow, Father’s Day was able to calmly slip in amid the escalating chaos. It really began as record-breaking heat took over, dominating the weather – day after day … and night after night.
As the scorching heat settled in, compliments of a mega high pressure bearing down over the southwest, it was inevitable wildfires would result. Humidity dropped and the winds picked up, and soon three out-of-control fires burned – the Sherpa, the Fish and the Reservoir fires. Are these weather conditions and nature’s response a little out of character? Absolutely, especially in regard to the weather; the calendar reads June, and the thermometer reads September. And nature is just doing what nature does … following orders from the climate/weather department.
Time to consult with the scientists. My go-to guy is Dr. Bill Patzert, a climatologist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge. Being world-renown in his field is commendable, but the ability to add humor to a complex subject is amazing. So what does he have to say about the heat wave? Bill Patzert’s scientific reply: “Things are definitely out of whack here.” I love a simple and straight-forward answer.
Whether you subscribe to global warming or not does nothing to alter the hot weather.
Thousands of years from now, humans might look back and say, “Our ancestors’ brains were very limited; they burned dinosaur remains (fossil-fuels).” Or, with teeth chattering, “Back in AD 2000, people referred to the Holocene interglacial period as global warming.”
Almost simultaneously, the following occurred: a full moon, the summer equinox, a Father’s Day barbecue in 110-degree heat and out-of-control wildfires. Thank you to whoever invented the backyard swimming pool!
At this moment (Thursday morning), we continue to relish a few days of cooler weather as Mother Nature’s AC – the onshore flow off the cool Pacific waters – has dropped the temperature considerably. Come the weekend, “Here comes the sun…” High pressure is building over Southern California, setting the stage is for another heat wave. Conditions don’t match the intensity of those last weekend, though. The heat is expected to stay inland, keeping the coastal areas cool. One can only hope a stray ocean breeze will blow into the Crescenta Valley, if not during daytime hours, we would welcome one to stay the night!
Sue Kilpatrick is a
Crescenta Valley resident and
Official Skywarn Spotter for the
National Weather Service. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.