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After the rain comes good beach and surfing weather, but is the drought over?

Beachgoers enjoyed the waves at Revere Beach over Labor Day weekend. Another beach-friendly weekend is on its way.Carlin Stiehl for The Boston Globe

With the first week of September just about in the books, it’s interesting to know the month so far has bucked the trend of the past summer. Temperatures this first week have been below average and we’ve had above-average rainfall.

There’s plenty of time left in the month for this to be a dry and warmer-than-average month but at least the first week has provided relief from drought and heat.

The beginning of September 2022 has been cooler and wetter than average.NOAA

After peeks of sunshine today it will become more plentiful Thursday through the weekend along with a warming trend.

I expect temperatures to be in the 80s away from the beaches both Saturday and Sunday and certainly warm enough to head into the ocean. If you are thinking of swimming there is going to be a hurricane far offshore. It’s so far away we won’t even see a cloud from it but like dropping a rock in a pond, eventually the ripples will make it to the shoreline and the waves from Hurricane Earl will make it to our beaches.

If you’re looking to do a little surfing it will be a very nice weekend to catch some waves. It’s also a good time to remember there could be riptides.


Hurricane Earl will become stronger as it passes by New England hundreds of miles off the coast this week.NOAA

I don’t see any rain in the forecast for the next week or so which begs the question: Is our drought over or just taking a temporary pause?

We’ve definitely made up some of the deficit in rainfall but it still remains. It’s also not enough to just look at the raw numbers. Even if we were to make up more rainfall over the next several months it would still mean the landscape endured a very dry stretch of weather.

The grass has responded quickly, but larger trees and shrubs can still be under stress from the lack of water.


Lawns have returned to their greener selves after much needed rain this week.Dave Epstein

The amount of rainfall we receive is certainly important, but so too is how we get that rainfall. Here in New England our water equivalent, whether snow or rain, occurs in relatively even intervals. We don’t have a dry or wet season like some parts of the world where it doesn’t rain for several months and then pours daily for several more.

If our precipitation were to become more sporadic it could mean problems for water management and horticulture. If you look at the number of days each month where half an inch of precipitation or more has fallen, many have occurred in the past.

The total amount of precipitation may not be changing, but how we receive it could be.NOAA

More research and data collection will need to take place before sweeping conclusions can be made. For now, let’s enjoy the fact we’ve had some rain and the upcoming weather looks simply scrumptious.

Highs Friday will be in the 70s with lots of sunshine and low humidity levels.NOAA