With forecast high temperatures ranging from 95 to 101 degrees and heat index values expected to range from 102 to 112 this afternoon, we wondered how this heat compared to the hottest ever. The answer is...not very close. Comparing climate records from Louisville, Lexington, and Bowling Green we see that there have been times when it has been much hotter, such as the Dust Bowl Drought in the 1930's. One interesting fact to note, however, is that temperatures above 100 degrees normally come with significant dry periods. The fact that we are seeing temperatures this warm with above normal precipitation since June is somewhat rare. That being said, had we been much drier to this point in the summer, we would likely have seen temperatures equaling the numbers in western Kentucky and areas toward the Gulf of Mexico over the past couple of days.
Last time 100 degrees was reached at Louisville...
August 16th, 2007 - 105 degrees (There were 5 days of 100 degrees or greater in August 2007)
Hottest Temperature Ever Recorded at Louisville (1871 to Present)...
107 Degrees (3 times)
- July 24, 1901
- July 28, 1930
- July 14, 1936
Last time 100 degrees was reached at Lexington...
August 16, 2007 - 102 Degrees
Hottest Temperature Ever Recorded at Lexington (1872 to Present)...
108 Degrees (2 times)
- July 10, 1936
- July 15, 1936
Last time 100 degrees was reached at Bowling Green...
August 24th, 2007 - 103 Degrees
Hottest Temperature Ever Recorded at Bowling Green (1870 to Present)...
- July 28, 1930
**Bowling Green will have the best chance to reach the 100 degree plateau this afternoon, with Lexington staying in the mid 90s. Louisville is expected to see the upper 90s.
For more information on the Dust Bowl Drought and other droughts this century, go to: North American Drought