Monday, June 4, 2012

Understanding Bend's Sucktacular Climate: The Two-Month Rule

It's June 4, and in Bend the temperature is 54 degrees and it's drizzling. The visitors from California and other points south and east are wandering around in their shorts, T-shirts and sandals, looking dazed and confused.

Understanding Bend's suckalicious weather actually is pretty easy once you master a few basic facts:

  • Bend is in the Pacific Northwest, which means that (even though it's in the "rain shadow" of the Cascades) it's likely to be cloudy.
  • Bend is at 3,600 feet altitude and 44 degrees north latitude, which means it will be cold.
  • Bend is next to a mountain range, which means the weather will be erratic -- sunny one minute, cloudy the next; 80 degrees one day, 40 the next.

As a rule of thumb, generally the weather in Bend during the (so-called) spring and summer months is pretty consistently two months behind the weather in places with a more normal climate. The following is a handy guide for those planning a trip or (god forbid!) a move to Bend. Feel free to print it out and save it:

January in Bend is like January in other places.

February is like February.

March is like February.

April is like March.

May is like March.

June is like April.

July is like May.

August is like June.

September is like September (if we're lucky).

October is like September (if we're lucky).

November is like November.

December is like December.


Marshall_Will said...

It gets worse. Again, just to compare & contrast, Colorado Springs, CO ( at approx. twice the Elev. ) only has (1) day in the 10-Day forecast "in the 70's". Today, at 79.

Uh... everything ELSE is above 80! Their share of severe t-storms etc. but I'll even take flash floods over Drear. So 'June' for The Springs is actually JUNE-like weather.

Judging by most of the State's 10-day forecast, there's nowhere within driving distance to have a decent weekend. Save for maybe Warm Springs in the mid-70's. It'll take a June Miracle to get a calendar-aligned June here. Sorry...

H. Bruce Miller said...

Hell, Fairbanks, Alaska seems to be warmer in the spring than Bend. Seriously -- you can look it up.

Marshall_Will said...

Fairbanks would be a new wrinkle. And no, I've no reason to doubt you. We're Going Internationale! next month.

I introduced CoSprgs for that very reason. Drawing compare to Duluth and Minn./St. Paul might strike weather apologists unfair due to their lower elevations.

In the end this has become such a layup, basically show us *anywhere* that's having cruddier weather and Win a Prize!

Another case in point has become Mt. Angel's Oktoberfest ( which has taken place the weekend after Labor Day ) forever. Again, my recollection for years was that it was a good idea to take a long sleeve shirt then LEAVE it in your car! Miles of gals in halter tops, too-short cutoffs and sandals.

Hasn't been that way in years. How long before it becomes Augtoberfest..?

Bill said...

And the last three days Colorado springs has been in the 100's! And it is still June. Bend?