Could Rochester be on the path to top 10 rainiest July’s on record?

Weather Blog

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — This month has been rainy; no ifs, ands or buts about it. In fact, Rochester has seen measurable rainfall every single day this month except for one day on July 5th. It’s been at least over a year since we’ve seen a trend like this one, with so many days within a month seeing measurable rain all in a row.

As of this writing, Rochester has seen 4.3” of rainfall for the month so far. That’s +2.72” above normal, and that’s not even counting the higher rain totals seen outside of Rochester. Many places have seen more rain in just a few days than Rochester received throughout the entire month.

Since early May, we’ve seen a consistent deficit in rainfall that has sent many parts of the region into a moderate drought at times. The total precipitation for June was 1.73″, which is -1.64″ below average. Even the month of May sat at 1.28″, which is -1.58″ below normal for the month.

Data courtesy NOAA Regional Climate Center

When was the last time we were this wet in July?

So we know our July this year has been rainy, but our July last year still currently holds the higher total with 5.54″ of total precipitation. It also holds the top 11 spot as rainiest July in Rochester records according to data from NOAA. The difference between the two years is that this year’s July had rain coming in more consistently over a longer period of time, and last year the rain came in large quantities, but in bursts all at once in just a matter of a few days.

We still have about 16 days left in the month, and that’s still a good chunk of time where we could get even more rain and break what we saw last year. Rochester only needs 1.24″ more of rain to meet last July’s totals. If it does, then it would be placed in the top 10 spot for rainiest July’s on record.

Signs are indeed pointing towards more wet than dry especially this weekend. Click the link below for the latest weekend forecast.

What’s the rainiest July in Rochester recorded history? The number one spot is held by the year 1947 with a grand total of 9.7″ of rain. Now that’s a lot of water!

Data courtesy NOAA Regional Climate Center

Why have we been so rainy lately?

The pattern and jet stream has put us in a place where we’ve had a series of systems developing and moving in from the central U.S. up towards the Northeast. Meanwhile out west, a massive ridge on the opposite side of the country is still bringing dry, hot air to their region and has placed much of the Western U.S. into a dangerous drought situation.

See how the areas across Western New York getting the highest rain totals over the past week or so have resulted in the latest drought monitor results in the link below.

When will the rain stop? That isn’t a question we can answer with 100% certainty. But we can iron out the days that look the driest in our 8-day forecast. What we do know is that rain is not going anywhere in the short term.

How does this affect lake levels? Drought conditions?

Compared to last month, the rain started off as a welcoming trend, but some are starting to wonder now that we have the rain, when will it stop? The Climate Prediction Center is showing signs of the rain letting up after this weekend.

For the latest look at the local forecast, click HERE.

~Meteorologist Christine Gregory

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