Wherever you live in Utah, it will be a hot town Friday. It’s summer in the cities — and rural areas — and with winds kicking up dust, the back of your neck may indeed get dirty and gritty.
But with apologies to the Lovin’ Spoonful, it will be a matter of perspective whether that forecast is a pity.
Along the Wasatch Front, mostly clear and sunny skies will bring highs in the low 90s with 15-25 mph evening winds lashing the region. That is quite a warm up from Thursday’s forecast for high temperatures in the upper-70s.
Southern Utahns may think the forecast is a pity, looking for relief from any shadows in their cities: high temperatures Friday will be in the upper-90s, up about 5 degrees from Thursday’s forecast.
Winds of 15-25 mph racing across the high deserts not only will bring the aforementioned grit, but affect air quality in the St. George area, where the Utah Division of Environmental Quality assigned a "red" or unhealthy rating for Friday, following on the "Yellow," or compromised air quality grade issued for the area on Thursday.
Elsewhere in the state, however, "Green" or satisfactory-to-good air quality ratings ruled.
The hot temperatures, along with continued low humidity and parched grasslands and forests, resulted in the National Weather Service issuing a "Red Flag" wildfire warning for roughly three-quarters of Utah. The high fire danger area stretched from northwestern Utah south to include the valleys and deserts west of the Wasatch Range, and all of southern Utah to the southeastern corner of the state; the fire danger warning then ran north into central Utah’s Nephi and Price areas.
Salt Lake City looked for a high Friday of 91, up sharply from Thursday’s forecast for 77 degrees; Ogden was forecast for 87 and 73, respectively; Provo 91 and 78; Logan 84 and 73; Wendover 88 and 75; Duchesne 86 and 71; Cedar City 87 and 81; St. George 97 and 93; and Moab 94 and 89 degrees.
Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.