- About Us
- SW Climate
Published November 23, 2010
Data Source(s): High Plains Regional Climate Center
Temperatures since the water year began on October 1 generally have been between 50 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit across northern Arizona and central New Mexico (Figure 1a). The deserts of southwestern Arizona have experienced temperatures between 60 and 75 degrees F, while southeastern Arizona has been between 60 and 65 degrees F. The higher elevations of northern and eastern Arizona and northern and western New Mexico have had cooler temperatures, ranging between 35 and 50 degrees F. These temperatures were generally 0–4 degrees F above average across Arizona and northern and western New Mexico (Figure 1b). Temperatures in northeastern and south-central New Mexico were 2–6 degrees F warmer than average. Small pockets of southwestern New Mexico were between 0 and 4 degrees F colder than average.
The past 30 days also have been warm, with temperatures rising between 0 to 3 degrees F above average in central, northern and western Arizona, and northern and eastern New Mexico (Figures 1c–d). Much of southwestern and west-central New Mexico have been 0–3 degrees F colder than average. The area in west-central Arizona with colder-than-average temperatures is due to a station move rather than unusually cold temperatures. The unseasonably warm temperatures are due to a lack of early winter storms across the Southwest, in part caused by the La Niña event. The La Niña circulation often brings high pressure over the Southwest, steering the winter storms north across the Pacific Northwest, Utah, and northern Colorado. When the Southwest has a dry winter, it is frequently warmer than average as well.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
- Dan Ferguson, CLIMAS Program Director
- Gregg Garfin, Founding Editor, Institute of the Environment
- Zack Guido, CLIMAS Associate Staff Scientist
- Gigi Owen, CLIMAS Assistant Staff Scientist
- Nancy J. Selover, Arizona State Climatologist
- Jessica Swetish, CLIMAS Publications Assistant
Please direct your Southwest Climate Outlook comments and suggestions to Zack Guido.
The CLIMAS Web site contains official and non-official forecasts, as well as other information. While we make every effort to verify this information, please understand that we do not warrant the accuracy of any of these materials.... Read full disclaimer