This year's summer season has so far brought the typical heat, a few thunderstorms and even a tornado that ripped through downtown Gaylord. However, according to the National Weather Service, this summer's weather is pretty on par when compared to previous years.
The National Weather Service acknowledges that there has been some weather events — such as Gaylord's tornado — but largely looks at them as outliers while claiming the rest of summer has been normal in terms of heat and precipitation.
"We are honestly pretty much on par," said National Weather Service meteorologist Sean Christensen.
"It's hard to gauge high wind events in terms of long term weather climatology. There has been plenty of years going back that had high winds and thunderstorms. In 2015, there was even a tornado that touched down near Alpena that was pretty strong. It just touched down in the woods," he said.
Christensen added that July's max temperature was 90 degrees and, so far this August, the Tip of the Mitt region has had a high of 81. This parallels previous years' highs with an annual average high at about 89 in June and 88 in August.
"Last year was pretty close to the average too," explained Christensen.
"I think the big help, in Petoskey anyway, is the lake. That keeps things cooler. It may seem that this year has been warmer than normal but it hasn't really been that crazy with serious heat waves or anything," he said.
In terms of rainfall, this year is pretty on par with the average as well. However, it is just slightly below normal.
Christensen explained that rainfall is a little more variable and difficult to predict but that July came up a little lower than average with only .05 inches of total rainfall in the Petoskey area. The average for that time of year is typically double that. August was about the same.
"I'd say the summer has been a little dryer when compared to other years going back to 2000. It's not abnormal but the average rainfall is typically a little higher than what we've seen so far," said Christensen.
Moving forward through the rest of August, the area will see a few days just about the normal average for this time of year. However, that translates into just a few days about 30 percent above normal temperatures.
The entirety of the month is predicted to follow the same trend in terms of precipitation and is expected to come in just below the average for this time of year.
With everything considered, Christensen said 2022's summer months have been pretty average and on par with what the region is used to seeing this time of year.
This article originally appeared on The Petoskey News-Review: Northern Michigan's summer weather mostly on par with past year averages