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Summer 2022 finishes as 3rd-hottest in Denver history

Denver set a new heat record on the final day of meteorological summer, finishing summer 2022 with 14 heat records broken.

DENVER — Denver finished the summer of 2022 as the third-hottest summer on record.

In meteorological record keeping, the last day of summer is Aug. 31. That way there are always 92 days to make a fair comparison through time. The summer would always have a different number of days if astrological seasons were used, because the solstices and equinoxes can be on different dates from year to year. 

There are 150 years of data across three different climate locations in the city. 

1.)  2012 (76.3°)

2.)  2020 (74.9°)

3.)  2022 (74.8°)

4.)  2021 (74.6°)

This summer will be remembered for its warm nights. Even on the final morning of summer on Wednesday, Denver broke a record for the warmest morning low temperature on that date at 67 degrees.

Credit: KUSA

Altogether, Denver set 14 heat records in the summer of 2022 -- three in June, five in July and six in August. Half of those records were warm morning low temperatures.

Every weather station on the Front Range finished with warmer-than-average summers. Castle Rock and Greeley finished with their warmest summers in history. Denver Central Park's was the eighth-warmest. Boulder's was 25th-warmest, Centennial's was fourth-warmest, and Fort Collins finished tied for second all-time.

Our neighbors on the other side of the Rockies were even hotter. Salt Lake City had its hottest summer by far, hitting 100 degrees a record-breaking 27 times since June 1.

In Colorado, the National Weather Service COOP observer in Walsh also reported 27 100-degree days this summer. Las Animas had 25, La Junta had 24, Pueblo had 21 and the UNC Greeley campus recorded 20.

Precipitation

Thanks to an active monsoon, rain showers were a little more widespread this summer, although still somewhat hit-and-miss in Colorado.

The weather station at Denver Central Park finally got hit with rain in August, breaking a streak of 21 consecutive summer months with below-average precipitation.

The La Plata County Airport in Durango had its wettest summer in history, with 5.03 inches of rain. But the station at DIA finished below average, and Holyoke had its driest summer in 22 years.  

Credit: KUSA

And it looks like September will follow suit with a warmer-than-average pattern. Denver could record between five and seven 90-degree days in the first eight days of the month. The record for 90-degree days in September is nine, which has been done four times (2018, 2017, 2005, 1895).

Credit: Laura Anderson
Credit: Laura Anderson

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