Question Mark ?

Anthony Watts has a post titled “Coldest July in history for Anchorage?” This happened less than a day after I said this:

One of Anthony Watts’ favorite comments is along the lines of “coldest March in 40 years!!!” He rarely (if ever) says “coldest March ever.”

Is this my come-uppance?

We’ve recently emphasize some of the record-breaking extremes in regional temperature. This is in sharp contrast to the usual practice here, which is to emphasize the trend globally rather than fluctuations locally. But the extremes have been remarkable. Hottest 12-month period on record, not just for a single state but for the entire continental USA. Last summer, hottest month on record for any U.S. state, period. 2010, astounding heat wave in a large area centered on Moscow. I could indeed go on …

Yeah, weather (all by itself) is not climate and extremes happen in the normal course of events. But so many extremes, so severe, in rapid succession … that’s not the normal course of events.

So I finally see Anthony Watts use the phrase “coldest <insert month here> in history.” In my face!!!

But I can’t help but wonder… Why such fuss over “coldest <insert month here> in history” about a single city rather than an entire state?

And I can’t help but wonder … why such fuss over “coldest <insert month here> in history” for a month that isn’t even half over yet? That’s why Watts’ post requires a “question mark” at the end of its title.

Mainly, I can’t help but wonder, how desperate do you have to be to make a fuss over that?

If Anchorage, Alaska ends up with its “coldest July in history,” I won’t be that surprised. Extremes happen in the normal course of events. But if you compare the extreme hot stuff to the extreme cold stuff … what’s been happening lately is not the normal course of events.


61 responses to “Question Mark ?

  1. More importantly, can Watts provide a physical mechanism for the event, or is he content simply to shape his target audience with his rhetorical arts? Nothing Watts has ever done–including the surface stations project–has been done in the interest of scientific progress. I’ll wager that when AGW becomes so obvious to him that he must publicly admit he was wrong, he’ll just walk away — probably move on to the next industry target. His is a purely rhetorical project.

  2. Someone should ask him to do the same analysis for, say, Nuuk. He’ll enjoy that one. NOT!

  3. arch stanton

    Watts posts “look a squirrel!” threads like this to get his minions and Mysterians all excited.

    • Absolutely. As completely as the posts to his site are demolished, have you ever seen him address or acknowledge a flawed post? “Look, a squirrel!” is a much better answer.

  4. Is Mr. Watts older than Tamino? If so, then I must believe him. If not, did he display a larger American flag on July 4th? If so, then I must believe him.

  5. I had a conversation with that squirrel, and she knew more than Watts about both climate and nuts.

  6. Alaska and the PNW have been having colder springs lately due to the persistent atmospheric blocking. It is possible this is actually evidence of climate change caused by the strengthening of atmospheric blocking and changes to the jetstream — or else its just weather. It definitely does not contradict the climate trend.

    It seems to be under appreciated by the other side in this ‘debate’ that as you dump energy into a system it doesn’t have to heat the whole system uniformly. In this case the continental US bakes and we get cold weather. It averages out to hotter overall, but there’s no law that climate changes causes every location on the globe to have a hotter climate (which is good for the sales of espresso in Seattle as we’re finding it more and more necessary to load up on caffeine to deal with cloudy and cold Junes).

    • “It is possible this is actually evidence of climate change caused by the strengthening of atmospheric blocking and changes to the jetstream ….”

      Yup, and while I cannot speak for Alaska, climate science predicted this very thing for the PNW. Here in B.C., Canadian climate scientists have long predicted the west coast would be cooler and wetter than the rest of the continent, relatively speaking–which is exactly what we’re seeing.

    • To that end, if and when the Atlantic thermohaline circulation falters and the southeast of the United Kingdom plummets toward Siberian temperatures (for several scores years, or a bit longer), there is bound to be ejaculations from the remaining die-hard Denialists that it was “a scay-um after all, see, we told yous”.

  7. For Anchorage (& for Watts), “history” starts in 1917.
    The monthly Anchorage temperature records have mostly stood for decades. For instance, year of warmest month (since 1917) Jan 1977 Feb 1977 Mar 1926 Apr 1940 May 2004 Jun 1953 Jul 1977 Aug 2004 Sept 1956 Oct 1936 Nov 2002 Dec 1969.
    It’s only with full years that a warmer climate is evident with the 10 warmest years all since 1977 & the coldest all before 1973.
    The Anchorage weather data for this month is still ‘unofficial’ but these daily numbers that will show if the 1920 record for the coldest July is going to fall are posted at

    The anomalous cold in that part of the world is quite marked so far this year. The Bering Sea SST was the coldest on the satellite record for the months Feb-May which was why it got a bit icy there last winter. However, its relevance to the global scheme of things can perhaps be judged by the impact this cold is having on the Arctic melt season – ie zip.

  8. Reminds me of the British media fiasco with May temperatures over in the UK. In mid-April, many of the right-wing tabloids were predicting “the coldest May in 100 years” based on a forecast by the crackpot Piers Corbyn (who was even too off-the-wall with his recent forecasts to get the blessing of Anthony Watts). On May 10th, some of the right-wing tabloids then ran an article saying it was the coldest May in not 100 years, but 300 years. Of course, this was comparing only the first ten days of 2012 to the entire month of May in all of the other years in the CET record. Now, obviously, temperatures in May typically warm rapidly, so it’s silly to make such a proclamation. The usual suspects, such as A. Watts et al., picked up the story and added their own embellishments to it. The reality was temperatures for May 2012 finished a little above the mean for the CET. Predictably, there was silence from the same who pronounced it a record-breaker.

  9. Spot on Arch – this is very much “look – a squirrel!”. Somewhere I have a card depicting a load of knights attacking a castle. They are charging across the drawbridge with arrows, spears, severed limbs etc flying all over the place and one of the knights points down into the moat, saying, “Ooh, look everyone! Goldfish!”

    I can see in my mind’s eye an image of an off-the-scale flash flood with Anthony Watts pointing at it and saying the same thing!

    (and then his faithful chiming in to opine that goldfish are a cool water-loving species, therefore…..)

    All the best – John

  10. I wonder if they moved the official thermometers in Anchorage into the shade or something. Because Watts is always looking for evidence that temperature records are biased warm, to be an honest scientist he should so the same research when they turn out cold. And when he gets the runaround from some bureaucrat during his attempt to get the data, he should also file an FOIA request and keep reminding his readers how the bureaucrats MUST be trying to hide soemthing.

  11. Al Rodger: If you take the next 10-day forecast for Anchorage, the average for the month of July will be very close to even to the coldest July in Anchorage, with yet another eight days to run… AW is counting his chickens long before they hatch.

    Lamont Grantquist: I agree with your theory of the jet stream changes leading to blocking patterns. I also live in Seattle, and we finally had some summer weather recently. Its easy for us to notice the Rossby wave in the jet stream crossing the Gulf of Alaska well below Cook Inlet, and into the Pacific northwest, leaving Anchorage in the cold, and with a blocked LP system.

    Here are a couple of jet stream maps from this month that show this, with the last one from today showing the pattern breaking for now, and showing a nice Rossby loop swinging north to Anchorage.

  12. As in the case of Anchorage, Watts and the WUWT-ers clutching at straws once again, with an article by Pat Michaels. The article is about once-off (all-time since records began) maximum temperature by US State. Interesting work but not meant to be used in the way the article presents it.

    As I see it (I’m not a statistician or climate scientist), the most glaring problem with the article is that it’s wrongly used to suggest that the world is not really warming. Knowing when the single highest temperature in a State occurred does not seem particularly enlightening in regard to global warming. It just shows that some place in a State was the hottest place in that State one day, and no place in that State has yet been recorded as getting a higher maximum. It does not say anything about the number of places (in that State or overall) that have been getting hotter over time or the areas affected by weather events exacerbated by climate change or where there have already been significant changes in climate.

    If Michaels had wanted to inform about climate change or global warming (rather than mislead), he would have included other material in the article, say, trends in average global temperature or even temperature trends across the USA or the number of record highs vs the number of record lows by decade around the world.

    I cannot explain why I have been looking at WUWT lately. It’s not usually on my radar. (I blame Tamino :D )

  13. There’s been a couple of posts recently at WUWT about the breaking of max temperature records in the 1930s. They plot a chronological decadal frequency bar chart and put this forward as some sort of argument that the much greater number of records in the 1930s than recent decades is significant. The flaw in the analysis is so obvious (the records are historically cumulative and comparing a recent decade with a historical decade in this way is patently misleading) that it provides the perfect illustration of the fact that these people aren’t sceptics in the true definition of the term. Worth a post?

    • I second the request for a post on it. It’s not immediately obvious to me why a greater number of maximum temp records broken in the 1930s doesn’t downplay recent hot extremes. I suppose that the 30s being a comparably hot decade, many/most local records broken then could still stand even if the state or national averages are warmer recently. But it would be good to see this visualised (assuming I have the gist right).

      • Calling attention to the state all-time record highs is just another “squirrel” as one user put it above. Looking at a single date at a single location is about the worst possible way to determine whether the climate is warming. If you look at some of the “official” all-time state record highs, some of them seem anomalous compared to nearby sites. Not to say it wasn’t very hot on those days, but it’s kind of questionable in my mind anyways when the site is three or four degrees warmer than surrounding stations. Today, a lot of those records would probably be disallowed with the increased scrutiny over the accuracy of the temperature record. It’s kind of interesting that a lot of individual sites with long periods of records have set new all-time record highs, even though many of the state highs held. Makes you wonder why the sites that reported the record highs didn’t similarly experience those record highs in the recent heat wave — if those sites are even still reporting today.

        But in any case, it makes much more sense to look at long-term trends in the aggregate, which show an unmistakable warming trend. Some of the Dust Bowl era summers were incredibly hot. Indeed, 1936 is still #1, and 1934 #4. But many recent summers have been similarly hot — 2011 was #2, 2010 #6, and 2006 #3. Nearly half of all states recorded their hottest summer in either 2010 or 2011. And 2012 looks to be poised to similarly rewrite the history books, though I don’t know if it will top 1936. It does, however, have a fair chance of again falling among the top five, based on the warm June (14th hottest) and the very hot start to July, as well as the fact that long-range forecasts continue to call for hot conditions.

    • I’m not so sure about that DL. Sure, back in the 1930s with only a few decades of previous records, it was ridiculously easy for a run of extreme summers and winters to break, well, pretty much all state records.

      However, since then we’ve had nearly 80 years of weather to try and break those records, meaning that in the absence of a trend a state record is as likely to be from the 1910s as the 2010s. I don’t have a particularly statistical brain but I don’t see the problem. The only thing that skews it is if the record was tied later – the graph on WUWT picks the earlier record when I think it should be counted both times.

      Am I right or can someone explain why I’m wrong?

      [Response: You’re right that it was easier to break a record in the 1930s when there was less data — but you’re wrong that such records are less impressive, because the records being discussed are those that *still stand*.]

      • Well maybe not same chance as 1910s & 2010s as we don’t have a full decade… but you know what I mean right?

      • “You’re right that it was easier to break a record in the 1930s when there was less data — but you’re wrong that such records are less impressive, because the records being discussed are those that *still stand*”

        Yes I know, I didn’t say they’re less impressive. The longer old records stand, the more impressive they become. Likewise, new records become more impressive as the ‘history’ they have to beat grows longer and longer.

        So the criticism that DL levels isn’t valid is it? Basically that’s all I’m trying to get straight.

  14. Oh, the strawmanity!

  15. Jim Pettit ("Neapolitan")

    The lock-stepping army of WattsBots drool all over themselves every time Little Anthony mutters the line, “There were more all-time state high temperatures in the 1930s than in all the decades since!” And when she shows that bar chart, they become apoplectic. Proving, of course, that they’re either too dimwitted to realize or too dishonest to admit that using that as an argument against overall warming has absolutely no validity whatsoever.

    Before I gave up trying to sneak anything past the “skeptic” mods at WUWT (“We Use Wishful Thinking”), I tried to get a few people there to look at and comment on a couple of running graphs that I believe nicely illustrate the trend in U.S. temperature records (here and here). There were no takers, of course (in fact, the mods only allowed the links to be posted one time). But that’s okay; no one with even a minimum of intellectual honesty could possibly look upon the current situation WRT record highs and see anything but warming. (Which, now that I think about it, is probably why none of the WattsBots did…)

  16. ok, if you want a state, and o, it isnt int the U.S., take a look at the Nteherlands. We re seeing here the same thing as TLM mentioned before, as is the whole of NW Europe, that is a cold summer. Over here its about 2 degrees Celsius below normal, same as in Brirain and Sweden. Fot the exact numbers, see the KNMI database .

  17. Peter Mannino

    I know this is off-topic, but I saw this article from economist robert murphy about the need or lack thereof for climate change mitigation and was hoping to get your thoughts.

    • Jim Pettit ("Neapolitan")

      Most of what Murphy has written in the article to which you linked has been thoroughly rebutted and debunked elsewhere, namely in the numerous comments from hundreds of real climate scientists in immediate response to the Wall Street Journal letter written by 16 scientists and engineers that Murphy referenced. But even had those responses not been made, a quick glance at where Murphy’s coming from really tells you all you need to know about his credibility in this matter:

      1) He’s an economist and a financial adviser, not a climate scientist (nor a scientist of any type, for that matter);

      2) He works for the “Institute for Energy Research”, an oil industry group dedicated to maintaining the enormously profitable though insanely destructive fossil fuel-only paradigm at any cost to the environment and things that live in it conducting research and analysis on the functions, operations, and government regulation of global energy markets.” (wikipedia)

      Murphy’s Climate Change Theory seems to boil down to this: “Mitigating CO2 may cost me some money. Therefore, the planet is not warming. Also, CO2 is better than free candy falling from the skies, and it’s all thanks to the benevolence of Koch Industries and ExxonMobil.”

      In the interest of fairness, I’ll give most anyone a listen. But the day I’ll take the word of a pro-pollution hack like Murphy over something stated by a credible atmospheric scientist where climate change is concerned is the day I’ll ignore my cardiovascular doctor and solicit heart-healthy diet advice from the obese and grease-covered gentleman who runs the corner BBQ stand…

    • jasonpettitt

      Coo, I like economics. I read as hard as I could but I struggled to find, for the life of me, what Mr Murphy’s point was. Seems for all the world that he just doesn’t like the fact that there’s a strong economic case to be made for early mitigation but can’t think of an actual reason to not like it – so here’s some (not very) intellectual sounding waffle instead.

      It also seems that Tol gave him a slapped wrist for getting the wrong end of the stick, prompted a quick rewrite, a thanks you for the correction in the comments followed by the claim that he had the right end of the stick (he didn’t) and a return to getting it hopelessly wrong again.

      In an effort to give Murphy some benefit of the doubt I followed the linky to his ‘rebuttal’ of Nordhous ( upon whence I quickly stopped giving him the benefit of the doubt. I didn’t finish, but I did spit coffee on my keyboard.

      Seriously poor stuff by any measure (we’re talking simple numeracy and logic fails here, not ideological but still possibly valid differences of opinion). In multiple different ways. All at once. I’m sure he’ll be posting at WUWT soon.

      If you’re interested in this sort of thing, Richard Revesz is super smart and entertaining on law, policy and economics and well worth a google.

  18. Meehl et al 2009 ( looks at extreme temperature records in the US, from individual stations, starting from a clean slate in 1950 and going through the 2000’s.

    There is a huge decline in extremes per year (50,000 down to 1000 per year) over that period, as more and more of the behavior of the climate system are observed. That is completely expected behavior. It’s also to be expected that we will continue to see extremes in temperature, albeit at a decreasing rate.

    What’s far more useful is the ratio of extreme lows to extreme highs, which reached 1:2.04 (as per Meehl) in the 2000’s as the climate warmed. That gives an indication of the non-stationary nature of the climate. Keep in mind that Meehl expects cold extremes to continue to occur, even with another 1 degree C of warming – although his prediction is that the ratio at that point will be on the order of 1:20 of cold to hot extremes. WRT the 1930’s (as mentioned by others), the raw number of hot extremes is dependent upon the trends, on how long individual records have been kept, and reduced in accuracy by the rather coarse nature of statewide extremes.

    So individual extremes, and in fact Michaels/Watt’s recent “lots of extremes in the 1930’s” thread – those are insufficient information to judge, red herrings. Trends are important, and ratios of extremes are far more informative than raw counts of a single direction of extreme. If you do not account for, or cancel out with a ratio, the length of time of observation, then a raw count of one kind of extreme alone is sub-factoid.

    • This post reminded me of a question that I’ve been meaning to ask for a while.

      Has there been a study of the trajectories of record high:low ratios from different regions of the planet, to synthesise an implication of the overall composite of forcings/sensitivities operating globally, and of how regional characteristics might modify the forcings/sensitivities?

      A lot of Meehl’s work considers such trajectories and climate models, but I’ve not yet found anything that seems to address this particular question.

  19. Anyone with any thoughts on this article by Dr. Cliff Mass that has been reposted at WUWT. He claims the article on the texas heatwave and drought is bogus.

    • Rattus Norvegicus

      Meh. Others disagree….

      John N-G had a nice analysis of this at his blog several months ago. He concluded that GW did make it work. The analysis convinced me.

    • Cue Horatio with something to the tune of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”…

    • I like Cliff Mass (he’s local here where I live, he and his group do some great weather modeling) but he combines extreme enthusiasm with a fairly high degree of naivete. Those things have no bearing on the actual core of his analysis other than it’s a bit difficult to follow because his boundless energy adds too much fluffy hyperbole. However I don’t think Mass understands how his words are going to be sliced into neat little bunches of two or three cherries each and artfully arranged for impressionistic display.

      Encouraging Cliff to join in the discussion of his article at WUWT would be helpful to everybody. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind.

      • It’s obvious that Mass is not a denialist … here’s a snippet from another post of his:

        Let me illustrate this. Here is the change in global temperature from 1980 through this year for the winter months (courtesy of Goddard Institute for Space Studies). The eastern Pacific has COOLED, and we have cooled with it. But we are the exceptions…most of the earth has warmed and the arctic region has really warmed. So there is global warming (with some contribution from man-caused increasing greenhouse gases), but out neighborhood has cooled…temporarily.

        Pretty interesting stuff and with important implications for us here in the NW…we have much more time than most to prepare for the effects of global warming… least the temperature/snow part of the changes. So if someone tries to tell you that the coastal NW has already experienced major effects due to global warming, you might question their information. And if someone says that a stable or increasing snowpack the past few decades proves global warming is nonsense…I would not trust their information either.

        Tobis chimed in to state that he felt the paper raised many of the same issues raised by Mass, and suggested it was the person who wrote the press release and those writing for the press who exaggerated things. Mass thinks the exaggeration is in the paper itself. I’ve not read it myself.

  20. Just ignore Watts, he then feels more important, than he really is…


  21. Mr. WTFUWT must be a pretty dumb forecaster if he can’t see that temperatures at Anchorage are forecast to be at or ABOVE normal for the next week, with a high of 70 (+4) on Thursday. If that’s anywhere near accurate, it puts a pretty mean regression on the 2 weeks of previous data.

  22. Since Mr. WTFUWT is oh, so concerned about the validity of station locations, did his dissertation on the subject also include the fact that until 1953, Anchorage observations were taken about 9 miles away, on the opposite side of the city, at Merrill Field, where the temperatures are probably less influenced by the cooling effect (in midsummer) of Turnagain Sound?
    Station Thread for Anchorage Area, AK
    Name Period in Thread
    1 ANCHORAGE FORECAST OFC 02/1998 to 12/2011
    2 ANCHORAGE TED STEVENS INTL AP 02/1953 to 01/1998
    3 ANCHORAGE MERRILL FIELD 02/1916 to 01/1953

  23. IMHO as WUWT has no scientific credibility left – not that it had any to start – Anthony is publishing more and more buzzard claims so as to keep his enterprise noticed. With out stuff like this his audience would get board and it’d all be over.

    And posting articles like this only helps him.

  24. Dog whistle, or cat call — sometimes it’s hard to be sure.

  25. Any thoughts on the WUWT’s latest claim that warming is greatly over estimated? A response post might be called “The man who mistook a presentation abstract for a peer reviewed paper.”

    [Response: Where’s the skepticism?]

  26. Who cares?

    Seriously, who cares what goes on at the freak show known as WUWT?

    It is less than irrelevant.

    • Flakmeister

      Well, when you are in the minority at a given site, it is nice to have a rebuttal handy for the most egregious stuff trotted out at WUWT…

      And like it or not, it is relevant because even if WUWT retains “editorial” rights, there are web sites that do not edit out inconvienient posts…..

    • WUWT’s goal is to get this nonsense in the echo chamber and then maybe Fox News before anyone can actually read the unreleased paper.

  27. Not that anyone cares about the WUWT claim that Anchorage would set a new low all-time average temperature for the month, but today the average temperature for the month so far climbed above the all-time lowest July monthly average of 54.4 deg F.

    If the next ten days come in as forecast today, then the monthly average will hit 55.9 deg F, over 1.5 deg higher than the record low monthly average. Once again, Anthony Watts has blown a forecast.

    • Just to be pedantic, Zinfan94, as of the latest figures I have, 20/7, the running July average was 54.37500 deg F according to the NOAA while the 1920 record month managed 54.41935 deg F.
      So I’d reckon “What’s Up With That” Watts actually has another day to think up a face-saving reason for his failure to read this one.

  28. Yes Al Rodger, the initial reports showed high temps were in the range of 66-67 deg F, but when the official high was reported on the site you linked to, the high temp was only 64. Dodged the bullet for another day.

    • You were looking at the reports for Merrill Field (PAMR), the former Anchorage climate site. The current official Anchorage climate reports are from Anchorage International Airport (PANC), which probably tends to be somewhat cooler in the summer because of its closer proximity to water:
      As I pointed out in a previous comment, this is the kind of siting issue WTFUWT would be all over like a cheap suit if the results were in the opposite direction.

      • Correction, Anchorage climate data is actually from the Anchorage NWS office (PAFC), which is adjacent to the airport. Because it’s not an actual airport location, however, it doesn’t report hourly through the obhistory web page. The airport has some missing data, but it reports a month-to-date average of 55.1, vs. 54.4 at the NWS. Merrill also has some missing data, but the average there is 56.8. Confused yet? If not, try Lake Hood, also in Anchorage, where the average is 57.2.
        Anchorage Forecast Office
        ID: PAFC
        Station Type: NWS
        Data Begins: 1/1915
        Data Ends: 7/2012

        What is the real record cold July at Anchorage? Mr. WTFUWT is not nearly as dumb as he sounds; he’s cynically exploiting these ambiguities to push his agenda.

  29. I’m not entirely sure where in (or near) Anchorage the readings are taken, but I am happy that this source with NOAA written over it with its July average now running at 5.454762 deg F is official enough to assert that the 2012 July-to-date average is now above the previous record low set and the 1920 “coldest July in history” record is safe.

    Of course WUWT Watts only posed the question whether this month would achieve the lowest in history temperature. And even that he cut and pasted from elsewhere. (Did I read somewhere that the poor chap has been so busy-busy with his voluminous writings, he is now suffering from RSI.) The question may have been ill-judged but it does leave us 3 coldest daytime days on record set during the month. And we should be thankful for WUWT Watts for pointing them out as the record lows are still needed to balance out the more numerous record highs According to Gerald Meehl of NCAR “The ways these records are being broken show how our climate is already shifting.” So in his own silly way WUWT Watts is actually demonstrating the existance of climate change (although as a denier, he would probably deny it).

    Are skeptics more likely to be conspiracy theorists. Given theories like the thermometer drop out and the urban heat island being mysteriously not taken into account Id have to say a large portion of the contrarians is pure conspiracy. Even the way they pose this ‘question’ has the hall marks of Above Top Secret of Prison Planet. Still will be interesting watching this hand grenade explode on the bloggosphere.

    • FWIW, it’s in good accord with what I’ve observed over the years. The prescriptive statement at the end is good, but difficult to implement:

      The challenge of engaging with climate change sceptics is finding the lens that better fits their ideological views – not just shouting the science more loudly.

  31. And with 5 days to go, the monthly average is UP to 55.0.

  32. I suspect – being cynical and suspicious – that some TV weather presenters on networks that have an anti-climate action editorial policy (and some clearly do) are deliberately including anti agw ‘record’ weather events whenever possible. Cold weather records by preference but when they aren’t around, including as many unnecessary mentions of records of any kind being broken. Even when they aren’t. Coldest in ten years, wettest in five years – not actually records broken at all – but these are successfully immunising their audience against an emotional reaction to news of true record extreme weather events occurring, turning them into something normal that happens every day.

  33. Jim Pettit ("Neapolitan")

    The Anchorage average temperature so far this month (that is, through the 28) has been 55.4 degrees. That’s a full degree higher than the coldest July recorded there (1920). If the NWS forecast for the last three days of the month pans out, Anchorage will end with a July average temperature of 55.6 degrees. Given that the 2008 July average was 55.4, I wonder whether Watts will loudly and breathlessly announce “Coldest July in four years for Anchorage!”

  34. Average through the 30th: 55.4
    Average ON the 31st: 58
    Total (preliminary) average: 55.5
    Game over, thank you for playing.

  35. Just for the record:
    YEAR: 2012
    LATITUDE: 61 10 N
    LONGITUDE: 150 2 W
    DPTR FM NORMAL: -3.3
    HIGHEST: 73 ON 18
    LOWEST: 45 ON 10, 9