Alabama's 2013 summer went into the books as one of the coolest summers in the 131-year record, with an average high temperature that was almost 2° cooler than seasonal norms.
How cool was it?
For the three months of “meteorological” summer no station in Alabama hit 100 degrees. If that holds up (we won't have all of the temperature data for a few days and the folks at the Southeastern Regional Climate Center are keeping an eye out), this summer will be only the fourth time that has happened since 1883. The others were 1965, 1994 and 2001.
It is interesting that all of the summers without a 100 degree day have been in the past 50 years, even though we have many more weather stations collecting data than we did beginning in the late 19th century.
Just because we didn't hit 100 during the summer doesn't mean the state won't see at least one station hit 100 this year. September has seen many 100 degree days in the past, including the state's all-time record high of 112° F on Sept. 5, 1925, in Centreville. A side note: In the three previous years when Alabama didn't hit 100 during the summer, it also didn't reach 100 in September.
(In climate records we use the meteorological summer — June, July and August — rather than the solar summer, which this year ends on Sept. 22.)
Looking at preliminary temperature data from the areas around each of the state's four largest cities, this should be the fifth coolest summer on record.
Overall, this summer was both cool and wet, although the state generally warmed and dried as August came to a close. Statewide, 46 local daily climate records were set for the coolest daytime high temperatures just in August. During the cool spell beginning on the evening of August 14 and ending in early afternoon of August 19, Huntsville experienced an incredible 117 consecutive hours below 80° F.