Baltimore Sun

Our cup runneth over, but more hot & dry ahead

It sure seems like the agricultural drought proclaimed last week across most of Maryland must be over by now. Right? Here at The Sun's weather station, at Calvert & Centre streets, we've recorded 3.79 inches since the rains resumed on Saturday.

Towson is reporting 2.61 inches for the 24 hours ending at 8:30 Wednesday morning, the high for the state. There was 2.52 inches in Columbia and 1.38 inches in Bel Air.


This follows a very dry June and nine dry days at the start of July. And the 3.79 inches of rain that fell here is just about the average for July in Baltimore. We're already in surplus for July here at the paper, although it looks like the official NWS instruments at BWI-Marshall will show less when they add this morning's rain to the 2.08 inches in their gauge from Saturday through midnight Tuesday.

The short-term forecast still looks wet. The folks out at Sterling are predicting more showers for Baltimore before noon Wednesday, with a high near 87 degrees, and a 20 percent chance for some isolated storms Wednesday night. There are more storm chances late Friday and Saturday as another weak cold front moves through.

There does not seem to be much relief from the heat in sight. The highs at BWI are expected to be near 93 degrees from Thursday straight into early next week. And we'll have plenty of humidity, too.


But surely the drought is done. Right? We'll know more when the next Drought Monitor map comes out Thursday morning. Watch this space.

Then there's Eric the Red, the professional meteorologist from Baltimore who shed plenty of light on our winter storm coverage last December and February. He's back in the game, and he sees more dry weather ahead:

"Models are in very good agreement that a strong ridge of high pressure will build over the Midwest and Ohio Valley, and that would put us right back into a hot, dry weather pattern. The feature begins to rear its ugly head on or about Wednesday (the 21st), is in full force by the end of next week, and will likely rule the roost for the latter half of july.

"So while there has been some drought relief, I would not declare our regional drought over by a long shot. And in fact, you may wanna gear yourselves (if you have gardens and such) for another period of dry, hot weather. It is still summer, after all."

The 30-day precipitation map at the top of this post shows that, while some parts of the state have far exceeded the norms for the last 30 days, other parts are still very dry. Dark green is 100 percent of the norm. Colors bluer than that have recorded 125 to 150 percent of their norms. The light green to red colors show areas still below their norms. The orange and deep red areas are at 20 to 30 percent of their norms.

(SUN PHOTO: Frank Roylance/ Thanks to Eric the Red for the rain map, assembled from NWS/CPC data)