On its last day, Summer packed one final, furious burst of heat for Utahns along the Wasatch Front.
Temperatures peaked at 90 degrees Saturday afternoon in Salt Lake City, tying the previous heat record for Sept. 21, set in 1944, according to the National Weather Service. Saturday’s high also marked the 78th time temperatures hit 90 degrees in Salt Lake City. That puts 2013 in second place for the most days at or above 90 degrees, tied with 2007 and just behind 1961, which had 82 simmering days.
The heat comes on the last day of the hottest summer on record, which saw buckling roadways and stressed crops as a result of the weather.
Much of the state also saw intense, dry wind Saturday. The NWS reported that winds along the Wasatch Front were expected to blow at 35 mph Saturday afternoon. Gusts could reach 45 mph. A wind advisory covered much of the eastern part of Utah Saturday, including Salt Lake City. Forecasters expected the entire middle of the state to see windy conditions as well, while thunderstorms were expected along the Colorado border.
In southern Utah, forecasters expected temperatures near 90 degrees Saturday. The St. George region also is under a wind advisory Saturday, with breezes reaching 35 mph in the afternoon.
But as if a switch were being flipped for the first day of fall, forecasters expect much cooler temperatures Sunday. Along the Wasatch Front, highs will only reach the mid 60s. Wind will continue and the NWS reports a 30 percent chance of rain.
Mark Struthwolf, a NWS meteorologist, said the cold front should arrive sometime after 7 a.m. Sunday. He added that Utah should see a “pretty active pattern” of cooler fall weather, storms for the next few days.
According to the NWS, temperatures should rise during the work week, but highs will only hit the mid 70s.
In southern Utah, temperatures will drop about 10 degrees Sunday, with highs hovering in the 80s and staying in that range through the beginning of the week.
Salt Lake City’s high hit 90 degrees Saturday and should hit 64 degrees Sunday; Provo looked for 83 and 66 degrees, respectively; Ogden 81 and 63; Logan 82 and 64; Wendover 80 and 65; Duchesne 76 and 64; Cedar City 77 and 65; St. George 90 and 79; Park City 73 and 56; and Moab 87 and 78 degrees.