If coastal Humboldtians have been wondering just where the heck our summer is, you have good reason: Last month was tied for the cloudiest ever recorded in Eureka, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, whose database stretches from 1887 through 2005. According to Shawn Palmquist, a meteorologist at the group's Woodly Island station, 22 of July's 30 days were considered "cloudy." Only three times has a Eureka July been so gloomy -- in 1889, 1972 and 1998.
Palmquist explained NOAA's methodology: Each day (from sunrise to sunset) gets divided into eight sections. If zero-to-two of those sections are predominantly cloudy, then the day is considered "clear." If three-to-six sections have cloud cover, the day is deemed "partly cloudy." A full-fledged "cloudy" day is one that's at least seven-eighths blocked from the sun.
Our June was normal, with 12 cloudy days, Palmquist said. So far in August, six of the nine days have been cloudy, putting us on pace to exceed the monthly average of 14.
As Hank Sims pointed out on the Lost Coast Outpost last month, it's been unseasonably chilly, too: Eureka was the most unusually cold place in the U.S. thorugh the first six months of this year, again according to NOAA.
It should be acknowledged that the rest of the country would probably trade their summer weather for ours in a hot minute: July was the hottest month on record in the United States.