EAST TEXAS (KTRE) - We only have one more full day of summer to go through until the official start of fall arrives at 9:49am this Saturday morning.
As you recall from grade school, the official start of fall, also known as the autumnal equinox, is when the sun's rays are directly centered over the equator. This also takes place around March 20th, when we welcome in the start of spring.
This Saturday, we will see twelve hours of daylight and twelve hours of darkness. From that point forward, the Northern Hemisphere will tilt further away from the sun. This will lead to shorter days, and ultimately, towards cooler temperatures as we head through fall and towards the winter season.
2012 Was No Match For 2011
Now that summer 2012 is almost in the books, you can pat yourself on the back as you survived yet another hot summer in East Texas.
We saw our summer temperatures well above normal, but it pales in comparison to our record setting summer heat wave of 2011.
This summer, we saw seventeen days in which our high temperatures topped out in triple digit territory. Last summer, we had sixty-three occurrences of temperatures topping out at, or over the century mark. That is still hard to fathom: nearly four times the amount of triple digit days last year compared to the one we are just wrapping up.
The main factor behind our 'not as hot' summer, was the fact we had such a wet winter and spring. All that ground moisture held temperatures in check. This did make the humidity much worse, but that, in turn, offsets some of the heating.
The better rainfall amounts we have seen in 2012 were due to a weakening La Nina climate pattern and a return to El Nino, which favors a wetter weather pattern for the state of Texas.