Remembering United States hottest day ever

Remembering United States hottest day ever

Sunday marks the anniversary of when Death Valley, Calif. set the all-time record high for not just the United States, but also the Western Hemisphere. Temperatures in Death Valley (at Greenland Ranch, which is now known as Furnace Creek Ranch) soared to 56,6 degrees Celsius (134 F) on July 10, 1913. That date was actually one of five consecutive days when Death Valley recorded a high of 129 degrees or higher.

The high of 134 degrees from 1913 goes beyond the record books of the Western Hemisphere. It is the second hottest temperature ever measured in the world. El Azizia, Libya, sits at the top of that list with a high of 57,7 degree Celsius (136F) on September 13, 1922.

While a high of 134 degrees is extreme even by Death Valley's standards, blazing heat is not uncommon. The maximum average high temperature in July is 48,8 degree Celsius (120F), compared to the 106 degrees in Phoenix, Ariz.

 

Death Valley owes its hot weather to its extremely low elevation (it sits at nearly 300 feet below sea level) and dry climate. Death Valley averages only 2.33 inches of rain each year, meaning there is hardly ever moisture in the ground, and the sun's energy can be used entirely for heating. When the sun's energy comes into contact with wet ground, evaporation takes place and reduces the amount of heating that could ultimately take place.

Interestingly, the all-time coldest reading in Death Valley was also set in 1913. Temperatures bottomed out at 15 degrees on January 8th of that year, according to the Death Valley National Park's website. (AccuWeather)

 

Each state's high temperature record



State Temp Date Station Elevation (feet) 
Ala. 112 Sept. 5, 1925 Centerville 345
Alaska 100 June 27, 1915 Ft. Yukon 420*
Ariz. 128 June 29, 1994 Lake Havasu 505
Ark. 120 Aug. 10, 1936 Ozark 396
Calif. 134 July 10, 1913 Death Valley N/A
Colo. 118 July 11, 1888 Bennett 5,484
Conn. 106 July 15, 1995 Danbury 450
Del. 110 July 21, 1930 Millsboro 20
Fla. 109 June 29, 1931 Monticello 207
Ga. 112 July 24, 1952 Louisville 132
Hawaii 100 April 27,1931 Pahala 850
Idaho 118 July 28, 1934 Orofino 1,027
Ill. 117 July 14, 1954 E. St Louis 410
Ind. 116 July 14, 1936 Collegeville 672
Iowa 118 July 20, 1934 Keokuk 614
Kansas 121 July 24, 1936 Alton 1,651
Ky. 114 July 28, 1930 Greensburg 581
La. 114 Aug. 10, 1936 Plain Dealing 268
Maine 105 July 10, 1911 N. Bridgton 450
Md. 109 July 10, 1936 Cumberland and Frederick 623, 325
Mass. 107 Aug. 2, 1975 New Bedford and Chester 120, 640
Mich. 112 July 13, 1936 Mio 963
Minn. 114 July 6, 1936 Moorhead 904
Miss. 115 July 29, 1930 Holly Springs 600
Mo 118 July 14, 1954 Warsaw and Union 705, 560
Mont. 117 July 5, 1937 Medicine Lake 1,950
Neb. 118 July 24, 1936 Minden 2,169
Nev. 125 June 29, 1994 Laughlin 605
N.H. 106 July 4, 1911 Nashua 125
N.J. 110 July 10, 1936 Runyon 18
N.M. 122 June 27, 1994 Lakewood N/A
N.Y. 108 July 22, 1926 Troy 35
N.C. 110 Aug. 21, 1983 Fayetteville 213
N.D. 121 July 6, 1936 Steele 1,857
Ohio 113 July 21, 1934 Gallipolis 673
Okla. 120 June 27, 1994 Tipton 1,350
Ore. 119 Aug. 10, 1898 Pendleton 1,074
Pa. 111 July 10, 1936 Phoenixville 100
R.I. 104 Aug. 2, 1975 Providence 51
S.C. 111 June 28, 1954 Camden 170
S.D. 120 July 15, 2006 Kelly Ranch/Usta 2,339
Tenn. 113 Aug. 9, 1930 Perryville 377
Texas 120 Aug. 12, 1936 Seymour 1,291
Utah 117 July 5, 1985 Saint George 2,880
Vt. 105 July 4, 1911 Vernon 310
Va. 110 July 15, 1954 Balcony Falls 725
Wash. 118 Aug. 5, 1961 Ice Harbor Dam 475 475
W. Va. 112 July 10, 1936 Martinsburg 435
Wis. 114 July 13, 1936 Wisconsin Dells 900
Wyo. 116 Aug. 8, 1983 Basin 3,500
Source: U.S. National Climatic Data Center (last updated August 2006)

Comments

fred starr 8 years ago

The El Azizia record was discredited by a panel of experts; thus Furnace Creek hold the world record for a shade temperature reading.

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