Eighth Warmest May on Record

By Russell Russ

May started out cooler than normal and much drier than normal. Temperatures increased by the middle of the month, and then by the latter part of the month, temperatures matched record highs. Warmer temperatures, brighter skies and greening trees meant that we were getting closer to summer. After last year’s very cool and wet Memorial Day, it was nice that the weather for this year’s holiday was spectacular. The weather was very nice for local parades and Norfolk’s annual road race.

May’s low temperature of 32 degrees was observed on May 1 and the high of 88 degrees was observed on May 21. With an average monthly mean temperature of 58.2 degrees, it was 3.3 degrees above normal. It was Norfolk’s eighth warmest May over the last ninety-one years. There were no days with record cold temperatures. There were two days that tied record highs. The high of 88 on May 21 tied the 1934 record and the high of 87 on May 22 tied the record from 1988. Many other locations in the state also tied or surpassed records during this warm spell. Norfolk’s warmest May occurred in 2015 with a temperature of 61.8 degrees, the coldest was in 1967 with 46.8.

The total precipitation recorded for the month was 3.84 inches, 0.50 inch below normal. There were five thunderstorms recorded in May, but only May 27-28 had a duration of moderate to heavy rainfall. Through May, the total precipitation for 2022 totaled 20.89 inches. Believe it or not, this was actually 0.28 inch above normal and we were sitting 2.50 inches above last year’s total through May. Snowfall this year has been pitiful, but we are getting beneficial precipitation. Norfolk’s wettest May was in 1984 with 12.34 inches, the driest was in 1980 with 1.31 inches.

To put an exclamation point on Norfolk’s dreadful snowfall totals for the 2021-2022 Winter Season, April recorded just a trace of snow and May recorded no snowfall at all. For May, this was 0.4 inch below normal. Norfolk’s (and Connecticut’s) snowiest May on record (by far) was in 1977 when an amazing 20.0 inches was recorded.

Norfolk’s Winter Season snowfall total for 2021-2022 (October-May) ended up being just 43.4 inches, 45.7 inches below normal. This winter ranked as Norfolk’s third least snowy winter since 1932-1933. Did anyone predict that we would get so little this year? Probably not many people made an accurate prediction for Norfolk’s snowfall this winter.

An early look at June’s weather through two-thirds of the month showed that temperatures were cooler than normal. A low of 43 degrees on June 20 was just shy of the 1959 record of 41. Rainfall was running about average for June. With breezy conditions, daily highs in the fifties and sixties and nightly lows in the forties, it sure did not feel like mid-June weather. The heat and humidity is going to come so we should enjoy the early fall-like weather while we have it.