Gladstone was hit by a significant tornado on the evening of July 19, 1992. This severe weather event occurred during the infamous "Year without a Summer." Severe weather, like this tornado, is fueled by warm, humid air. During the summer of 1992, warm air was at a premium. It did manage to reach the 70s to around 80 on the 19th ahead of a low-pressure system advancing from the Northern Plains. The low and its attendant cool front helped to set off the thunderstorm that spawned the Gladstone tornado.
Behind the front, it was business as usual in this unprecedented summer. On July 21, 1992, frost was reported at Sand River east of Marquette and also north of Iron Mountain. At the same time, a thermometer just outside of Rapid River, several miles up the road from Gladstone, registered 24 degrees. The year without a summer saw a frost and freeze at some location in the U.P. during each summer month.
Julyâ??s mean temperature at the National Weather Service near Negaunee was only 58.4 degrees, over six degrees below the long-term average. This reading was cooler than the â??normalâ?? mean temperature for June. Relative to average, July was the coldest month of the summer. Even so, it was bookended by June and August 1992, months that both came in over three degrees below normal.
Through yesterday, July 2014 was running 3.5 degrees below average. While we will have two more days above average (today way above), weâ??ll go back into the cool pattern that has dominated much of the month. A cool front will pass through tomorrow and afterwards, temperatures should be near to below average. In fact, it appears that even cooler weather relative to average may filter in behind a front late this weekend (Image above). Despite our summery interlude the last few days, July 2014 will wind up being a cool summer month.