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      The Cool Summers of the 1960s

      Here comes the summertime version of the polar vortex. This is the European model forecast for next Monday evening. This would mean unseasonably cool, wet weather.

      Record low temperatures were observed across Upper Michigan on July 10, 1968. The coolest came from the National Weather Service (NWS) site near Negaunee at 34 degrees. Ironwood and Houghton checked in at 37, Munising 36 and Iron Mountain 35 degrees. A cool, sprawling high-pressure area settled right over the U.P. during the night and early morning and brought ideal cooling conditions that led to the record lows (Image above).

      The summer of 1968, in keeping with the cool 60s, came in below average. June was a chilly 3.7 degrees below average, while July was only 0.6 below and August 1.5 degrees below the long-term. It was also a wet summer, due in large part to an exceptionally wet June. The U.S. Weather Bureau in Marquette collected over seven inches of rain. July and August were both a little below average and then September turned soggy again with 7.22 inches of rain.

      The summer of 2014 is a wet one so far. Since June 1, just over eight inches of rain has fallen at the NWS. The average is less than half that total. While June was a little above average temperature-wise, July is running coolâ??over three degrees below average through yesterday. While it will warm near to above average through the weekend, indications are that a major cool down will hit us early next week. In fact, the medium-range models are all advertising the attack of the Polar Vortexâ??summer style--the first of next week (Image 2).