2016 has been the rare year in which the D.C. area has kept away any meaningful heat through the first third of June. But we may get a quick-hitting taste of it this weekend.
It’s the deepest into the calendar year that the region’s eluded 90 degrees since 2003, when it took until June 24. The longest wait to touch 90 occurred in 1979, when it didn’t happen until July 12. The earliest we’ve hit 90 is March 29, back in 1945.
This morning, the mercury was about as far from 90 degrees as it gets this time of year. The temperature in the District dipped to a crisp 53 degrees, which marked the second-lowest reading (joining 1949, 1957 and 1997) for the date since measurements began at Reagan National Airport in 1945. Only the low of 52 degrees, which occurred on this date in 1955, 1980 and 1988, was colder.
Suburban areas plunged into the 40s (Dulles and BWI airports fell to 47 and 46 degrees).
But the heat-free honeymoon may be about to end — suddenly. After delightful 75-to-80-degree weather today and Friday, the GFS model forecasts a burst of heat on Saturday, with high temperatures sprinting into the low 90s.
Other models, like the European, aren’t as aggressive with the heat and forecast highs only in the mid-80s.
However, while the European holds back the heat Saturday, it brings it Sunday, forecasting highs in the low 90s.
In other words, both weekend days have a fighting chance to foil the 90-degree-day shutout. If, somehow, we don’t hit 90 this weekend, we could extend the sub-90 streak for some time.
The European model forecasts highs to stay below 90 from June 13 to 23. So it’s plausible we could avoid 90 as far into June as 2003. The latest dates to first hit 90 beyond June 24 are: June 25 (1897), June 27 (1878) and, the recordholder, July 12 (1979).