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When Seattle’s summer weather is actually supposed to start

Seattle's warm weather season hasn't technically started yet. (Stephanie Klein, MyNorthwest)

It’s been hard not to feel like Seattle’s early-July weather has been gloomier than usual. But according to the National Weather Service, this is actually nothing out of the ordinary. In fact, at least unofficially, the city’s summer weather season hasn’t even really started yet.

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“We have a semi-serious date for the first day of summer for the forecast office here in Seattle — that day is July 12,” National Weather Service Meteorologist Chris Burke told KIRO Radio.

According to Burke, the weather we typically associate with Seattle summers spans mid-July to mid-August, making the wet days we’ve seen this in early-July this year the norm, rather than an aberration.

More than that, past years when it’s been dry in early July have actually been an anomaly.

“People think of July 4th as ‘first we need that rain and then it gets nice,’ but really it’s another week after that when the weather typically gets pretty nice,” said Burke.

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Through the first part of July, .66 inches of rain have been recorded in the Seattle area; the month averages 0.7 inches. With little more likely to come for the remainder of July, Burke estimates we won’t see anything more than slightly above-average rainfall once the month ends.

“What we’re seeing here is a reversion to the mean,” noted Burke. “We’ve had a couple of nice Julys in the last two years.”

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