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Little rain in May

Continued bad news on the moisture front for 2023. Yes, May was dry. There has not been significant rain since a half inch fell May 5. Four of the five rain days came May 1-6, 0.59 inches of 0.64 inches total rain. The May 5 storm was the only precipitation greater than one-tenth an inch. This May, rainfall was 2.2 inches below, 70%, the century average.

This continues local water woes. Skagit County starts the dry season with a 6.2 inch water deficit, at 8.6 inches to date, six inches below normal for this century. In 2022 May’s 2.4 inches of rain was 13% above the month’s century average. Only February sent that much moisture this year.

Six of the eight driest Mays have been since 2016. Less than one inch of rain fell in 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2023. This year's 0.64 inch is the third driest May this century.

It was unseasonably warm, with daily temperatures well above normal. May's average daily high of 63.8 degrees was 4.3 degrees, 6.7%, above normal. Highs were above 70 degrees for 10 days May 11-20, with record highs the 13-15, at 82.1 and 86.6 degrees May 13-14.

The daily average of 54.7 degrees was 2.9 degrees and 5.3% above average. The 46.3 degrees average daily minimum was 1.9 degrees and 4% above average. There was no hint of frost. Only twice in May’s first ten days did morning lows dip below forty degrees.

Calculations are based on 22 years of data with no records for 2006 or 2009.

Measurements and data are at Washington State University’s Mount Vernon weather station on Memorial Highway.


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