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Western US weather

Wild Memorial Day weekend in the West gives way to more typical weather as June arrives

By Brian Thompson , AccuWeather meteorologist
5/30/2019, 1:21:43 PM

It was certainly an interesting Memorial Day weekend across the West, but some normalcy is starting to return, and things will continue to normalize heading into early June.

Memorial Day was unusually cool in Phoenix.


Sunday was the cool day farther west, when the temperature topped out at only 61 in San Francisco, 62 in Downtown Los Angeles and 65 in San Diego.

There was even some severe weather. In Northern California, a supercell thunderstorm produced spectacular images near Redding on Friday evening.


A tornado warning was issued for that cell, but there was no confirmation of one. However, there were several reports of golf ball-sized hail in the Redding area from the storm.

Two tornadoes were reported in Idaho on Sunday and Monday, with another weak tornado in Oregon on Tuesday.

Since then, things have started to gradually return to normal across the West. Phoenix is back in the 90s, and the marine layer has returned to coastal California.

Upstairs in the atmosphere, though, things are still not quite there yet. There is another upper-level trough that will swing southeastward across the West into the weekend as June arrives.

Western Blog Trough Image 5/30

This trough, though, is not nearly as deep and potent as many of the previous upper lows, so it will have less of an impact. Temperatures will not fluctuate too much, and there won't be many organized areas of rain.

The trough will be just enough to trigger some daily thunderstorms across the higher terrain from the Sierra and the Siskiyous eastward through Nevada into the Rockies.

By the early and middle parts of next week, the trough will gradually weaken. As it does so, the coverage of thunderstorms will decrease each day.

Meanwhile, the marine layer will persist throughout the period across coastal Southern California.

The overall pattern looks to be trending toward one that will feature a ridge in the West heading into early June.

Early June Pattern 5/30


Outside of a trough scooting across the Pacific Northwest late next week, the ridge will be in control most of the time, promoting mostly dry weather.

As the dry days add up in the Pacific Northwest, we'll have to be on guard for the threat of wildfires heading through June. An unusually warm and dry stretch of weather has already led to some wildfires in northern Alberta.

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com

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Western US weather