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Published June 21, 2011
Data Source(s): High Plains Regional Climate Center
Temperatures since the water year began on October 1 have averaged between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit in the southwest deserts and along the Arizona-California border, 50 and 60 degrees F in southeastern Arizona and along the New Mexico-Mexico border, 40 and 50 degrees F in central and northeastern New Mexico, and 40 and 50 degrees F across the Colorado Plateau and the northwestern quarter of New Mexico (Figure 1a). The highest elevations have seen temperature averages between 30 and 40 degrees F. These temperatures are about 5 degrees warmer than last month, with late spring finally reaching near-average temperatures. Temperatures are within 1 degree F of average across Arizona and northwestern New Mexico, while the eastern two-thirds of New Mexico has been up to 4 degrees warmer than average. The warmest spots are Otero County in New Mexico and Gila County in Arizona. The coolest areas are southwestern New Mexico and northwestern and northeastern Arizona (Figure 1b). The cold area in west-central Arizona is due to a station move rather than a temperature trend.
Temperatures during the past 30 days have been cooler to the west (Figures 1c–d). Western New Mexico has ranged from 0 to 4 degrees cooler than average, while the eastern two-thirds of New Mexico has been 0–6 degrees warmer than average (Figures 1c–d).Notes:
The water year begins on October 1 and ends on September 30 of the following year. Water year is more commonly used in association with precipitation; water year temperature can be used to measure the temperatures associated with the hydrological activity during the water year. Average refers to the arithmetic mean of annual data from 1971–2000. Departure from average temperature is calculated by subtracting current data from the average. The result can be positive or negative. The continuous color maps (Figures 1a, 1b, 1c) are derived by taking measurements at individual meteorological stations and mathematically interpolating (estimating) values between known data points. The dots in Figure 1d show data values for individual stations. Interpolation procedures can cause aberrant values in data-sparse regions. These are experimental products from the High Plains Regional Climate Center.
Southwest Climate Outlook Staff
- Michael Crimmins, UA Extension Specialist
- Stephanie Doster, Institute of the Environment Editor
- Gregg Garfin, Founding Editor, Institute of the Environment
- Zack Guido, Managing Editor, CLIMAS Associate Staff Scientist
- Nancy J. Selover, Arizona State Climatologist
- Jessica Dollin, CLIMAS Publications Assistant
- Dave Dubious, New Mexico State Climatologist
Please direct your Southwest Climate Outlook comments and suggestions to Zack Guido.
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