100 Degree Weather Facts for Albuquerque and Other New Mexico Sites

 

As we head into the first widespread heat event of the summer,  interest from the public is focused on whether or not the temperature will reach 100 degrees in Albuquerque.  Thus far for 2010, we've been on target with the number of "hot" days.  The temperature reached 90 degrees twice in May of 2010 - and two days of 90 or greater maximum temperatures for May is the long term average.  How likely is it that Albuquerque will reach 100 degrees?   If we reach 100 degrees this weekend, we will break a record for the earliest occurence of 100 degrees at the Albuquerque Sunport.  The current record for the earliest date 100 degrees or higher was reached in any year at the Sunport was June 7, 1981.

Temperatures easily climb to 100 or higher over the east central and southeast plains during the summer months, however, maximum temperatures reach the 100 degree or more threshold less often in Albuquerque.  Since 2004, the maximum temperature at the Albuquerque Sunport has only reached 100 degrees twice - July 3, 2007 and july 19, 2009.  For other sites across central and southern New Mexico, maximum summer temperatures exceed 100 degrees every year. Across portions of northern New Mexico, and the high terrain statewide, temperatures remain below 100 degrees.  100 degree data for sites around New Mexico are listed in the table at the end of this article.

   
The graph below depicts the number of days with a maximum temperature of 100 degrees (F) or more for the period 1939 through 2008. Temperatures remained below 100 degrees in 30 years. In 1980, the temperature reached at least 100 degrees on 28 days!
   
100 Degree Days at the Albuquerque Sunport since 1990
   
The number of days with a maximum temperature of at least 100 degrees at the Albuquerque Sunport since 1990 are listed in the table below, along with the highest summer temperature recorded at the Sunport. For those interested in 100 degree facts for other cities across the state, annual average statistics for 14 additional sites are listed at the end of this feature.
   
Year June July August Annual

Hottest Days

1990 9 0 0 9 104 on 6/25 & 6/29
1991 2 0 0 2 101 on 6/25
1992 0 2 0 2 100 on 7/5 & 7/6
1993 2 2 0 4 100 on 6/27, 6/28, 7/2 & 7/7
1994 7 3 2 12 107 on 6/26
1995 0 5 0 5 103 on 7/27 & 7/28
1996 1 0 0 1 100 on 6/21
1997 0 0 0 0 98 on 6/30 & 7/2
1998 3 0 0 3 102 on 6/29
1999 1 1 0 2 100 on 6/30 & 7/1
2000 0 0 0 0 99 on 6/15
2001 0 0 0 0 98 on 7/1
2002 1 2 0 3 101 on 7/1
2003 0 8 0 8 104 on 7/14
2004 0 0 0 0 97 on 7/21
2005 0 0 0 0 99 on 7/11 and 7/19
2006 0 0 0 0
98 on 6/5, 6/19, & 7/14
2007 0 1 0 1
100 on 7/3
2008 0 0 0 0
97 on 6/17 & 18, 7/31 & 8/1
2009 0 1  0
100 on 7/19
 
   
Variability Across Albuquerque
   

Depending on the location across the Albuquerque Metro Area, the number of days for which the temperature reaches at least 100 degrees varies. In the table below, 100 degree statistics for two cooperative stations in Albuquerque (Valley and Foothills) are compared to those for the Albuquerque Sunport for the period 1991 through 2008. 100 degree days occur much less frequently in the higher elevations of the Foothills, and a bit more often in the Valley.

Number of 100 Degree Days 1991-2008
 
May
June
July
August
Total
Albuquerque Sunport
0
17
24
2
43
Albuquerque Valley
1
15
30
4
50
Albuquerque Foothills
0
3
4
0
7
   
100 Degree Weather Facts for the Albuquerque:

 

  • For the period 1897-2009*, the mercury reached at least 100 degrees in 50 of those 113 years, or 44 percent of the years

  • At the Sunport, 1939-2009, the mercury has reached at least 100 degrees in 41 of 71 years, or 58 percent of the years
  • Since 1939, the mercury reached at least 100 degrees 220 times, for an average of 3 times a year

  • The hottest  temperature ever recorded was 107 degrees, June 26, 1994.

  • The greatest number of consecutive 100 degree days was nine (June 22-30, 1980)

  • The earliest date 100 degrees or higher was reached in any year was June 7, 1981 (max  of 100 degrees)

  • The latest date 100 degrees or higher was reached in any year was September 5, 1979 (max of 100 degrees)

  • Average number of days between the first and last occurrence of 100+ degrees  is 17 days

  • The highest frequency of 100+ maximum temperatures occurs between June 28th and July 2nd.  Since 1939, 100+ temperatures have been observed 45 times during that  five day period. The temperature reached at least 100 degrees the most often on June 28th (13 occurrences).

   
*Note that historical weather records for Albuquerque are based on data collected from a number of sites. The official weather station has been on the grounds of what is now the Albuquerque International Airport (elev. 5313') since 1939.  Prior to that, in 1892, the official station was at the intersection of 4th and Gold streets (elev. 4950'), the University of New Mexico from 1893-1910, and again from 1918-1931 (elev. 5150').  Records were kept at the Kimo Theatre (elev. 4960') from 1931-33, and at the TWA Airport from 1933-1938. Click here for a map illustrating the various reporting locations.
   
Average Number of Days Reaching at least 100 Degrees, and Maximum Number of Occurrences, for Sites Across New Mexico
   
Site
MAY
JUN
JUL
AUG
SEP
Ave/Year
Max Days in a Year
Period of Record
Farmington
0
0
1
0
0
1
12 in 2005
1978-present
Clayton
0
‹1
‹1
0
0
1
8 in 1924
1909-present
Las Vegas
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1948-present
Los Lunas
0
2
2
1
0
5
29 in 2003
1957-present
Socorro
0
3
3
1
0
7
38 in 1934
1931-present
Ruidoso
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1948-present
Roswell
1
6
5
2
0
14
36 in 1980
1949-present
Clovis
0
2
3
2
0
7
58 in 1943
1911-present
Hobbs
1
5
4
2
0
12
54 in 1988
1913-present
Glenwood
0
2
2
0
0
5
19 in 2003
1948-present
Carlsbad
2
9
8
5
1
24
50 in 1998
1948-present
Santa Fe Coop
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1972-Present
T or C
0
3
3
0
0
6
19 in 1994
1951-present
Tucumcari Coop
0
3
4
2
0
9
40 in 1980
1904-present
   

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