Only two days in 2020 were warmer than today's high of 91. Eau Claire hit 92 degrees on both June 2 and June 8. This makes today just the third of the year with a high of at least 90, and we're going for more this week. This means that July will start out hot.
While July is Eau Claire's hottest month of the year on average, these temps are still well above average highs.
You've heard the saying before: It's not just the heat, it's the humidity. That was true today and will remain true through the week and even into next week. Relative humidity values have ranged from about 40% to 60% this afternoon.
Wait, that seems low.
That's because relative humidity is not a very good measure of the actual amount of moisture in the air. It's simply a comparison of moisture in the air compared to how much moisture the air could hold. Since warmer air holds more moisture than cooler air, this percentage is highest at night and lowest in the heat of the afternoon, even if the moisture content doesn't change.
That's why it's better to use the dew point temperature, which is what the air needs to cool to in order to reach 100% humidity. Simply put, the higher the dew point, the more moisture in the air. Since that's what we want to know- how much moisture is in the air because that's what we perceive as humidity, that's the better parameter to watch.
When dew points climb into the upper 60s, it's very humid and 70+ is excessive. That's what made it feel like the mid 90s this afternoon.
In all this heat and humidity that will continue through the week and even into next weekend, there will be slight chances for pop up showers and thunderstorms just about every day, though at this point all chances over the next seven days look isolated in nature.
Nonetheless, stay hydrated because it will be hot and humid for at least the near future.