Kristin Murphy, Deseret News
Bianka Rivas, 18, and Alonda Garcia, 6, both of Rose Park, ride a bike near Liberty Park Friday.

Say goodbye to July, which has been a record-breaker for more than just gas prices.

Temperatures were warmer than usual throughout the month — both highs and lows — making July 2008 the fifth-warmest month in recent recorded history, with an average monthly high of 95.3 degrees.

Last month saw four days over 100 degrees, with a mean temperature of 81.4 degrees. This average temperature booted July 1960's monthly record of 81.2 degrees to sixth place. According to the National Weather Service, 77 degrees is the normal average for July.

While this weekend's temperatures may pass the 100-degree mark throughout the Wasatch, next week is expected to cool, if only by a few degrees.

According to Eric Shoening, meteorologist with the Salt Lake Office of the National Weather Service, next week's temperatures are expected to be in the mid-90s. The slight decrease in temperatures will be due to an increase in cloud coverage, said Shoening.

Although temperatures are predicted to be cooler later in the week, they are still expected to be slightly above average for early August, said Shoening.

Last year's summer months — June, July and August — broke averages and records across the board. There were 17 days of 100-degree or higher temperatures. So far this year there have been only four. Last July's temperatures were also about 2.3 degrees higher, on average, than they were this year.

"It was not extra hot for Salt Lake," said KSL meteorologist Kevin Eubank. He explained the record-breaking mean temperatures are calculated by averaging the high and low temperatures together. "Nights were really warm as well as the days," explained Eubank.

Shoening said the rest of the summer is predicted to finish up with slightly above average temperatures. However, throughout August, high temperatures are expected to begin declining, leading up to the milder autumn temperatures.


E-mail: cmadsen@desnews.com