Dog days of . . . May? Peninsula cities break heat records
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Arwyn Rice/Peninsula Daily News
Ford Mustang Shelbys and Mercury Cougars brought out car-lovers and sun-worshippers on a hot and sunny Sunday in downtown Port Angeles.

By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News

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At the close of a spectacularly sunny weekend on the North Olympic Peninsula, high-temperature records for the date were shattered in Forks and Sequim on Sunday.

At 4 p.m., Forks registered a high of 88 degrees, setting a May 5 record in a city better-known for its rainy weather.

The last May 5 high of 82 degrees was set in Forks in 1925, according to Josh Smith, meteorologist for the National Weather Service office in Seattle.

Forks also saw record temperatures Friday and Saturday, he said.

The weather service said that Forks reached 72 degrees Friday and 82 Saturday, setting records for both dates.

People in the West End city weren't complaining.

“It's great,” said Chad Morris, assistant grocery manager at Forks Outfitters.

“It seems like everybody's spirits pick up,” when the weather warms up, he said.

The heat wave triggered a lot of sales for summer items like barbecue supplies, coolers, ice cream and beer, Morris said.

“I've seen a lot of pink people, but it hasn't been too bad. People seem to be using sunscreen,” he said.

Whitney Flagg, a greeter at the Forks Visitor Center, reported that more than 300 visitors checked in over the weekend, many drawn by the sunny weather to explore area beaches and rain forests.

Sequim's temperature Sunday also reached a record high of 80 degrees, breaking the record of 72 set May 5, 1992.

But while Forks and Sequim baked, other areas had breezy conditions that some locals simply described as “perfect.”

Port Townsend's high of 74 degrees at 4 p.m. was just shy of the record of 76 degrees set in 1915, a temperature that was tied in 1944 and 1966.

Port Angeles registered 75 degrees at 4 p.m. Sunday, just 4 degrees short of the record high of 79 set in 1953.

Hundreds of people flocked to the downtown area for a car show and to enjoy the nice weather, many sporting shorts, tank tops and sandals.

Restaurants with outdoor dining areas were crowded Sunday afternoon, as both residents and visitors sought the sunshine.

It also brought out shoppers looking for summer duds to match the weather.

“This is awesome. I just went and bought some shorts,” said Kerry Fauth, 23, of Port Angeles.

In Quilcene, the barometer reached 87 but still was short of the record of 89 degrees set in 1953.

Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at

Last modified: May 05. 2013 6:34PM
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