The weather setup this week is certainly reminding me of last summer and fall. Remember last October? Little Rock set highs well into the 90s through much of the month. This week the jet stream has made friends with Canada again, surging northward. What’s new is an area of high pressure which has built northward from Mexico. We’re talking equatorial high pressure, the real hot stuff, moving northward into the southern United States. This will likely push temperatures to record levels in many locations through next week.
Little Rock should be in the mid 80s this time of year. What’s working in our favor, in terms of breaking records, are the records themselves: they’re low! Record highs on Thursday, Friday and Saturday are in the mid 90s. That’s unusual. This time of year, most records are in the upper 90s and low 100s. The forecast has us just missing the record on Thursday, getting there on Friday and possibly breaking the record (the lowest of the 3 days) on Saturday with a projected high of 98.
Computer models continue on-track with this heat as well. The European model (plotted in graphic on the left) was going a couple of degrees warmer for Saturday earlier this week. It’s still showing hot however with a high of 97 in Little Rock and 99 in Camden. Southeast Arkansas will likely be the hottest this week, recording above 100 highs on multiple days.
Thursday’s temperatures will be hotter than what we saw on Wednesday. Forecast Trac is predicting highs in the mid 90s all across central Arkansas, with the highest temperatures being located south and east of Little Rock in the lower elevations of the Delta.
Of course, the heat is just part of the story. Humidity values will be in the “moderate” category, at least. Combine that with highs well into the 90s and it will feel more like the upper 90s and low 100s for most folks.
Be careful when venturing outdoors today during the hottest parts of the day. Keep fluids within reach and try to limit your exercise to the morning and evening hours, ideally after 7pm when temperatures fall back into the 80s.
Stay cool everyone!