Record-setting heat will affect much of the country over the Fourth of July weekend

Smoke from wildfires may cause hazy skies, but won’t disrupt firework viewing

Graig Graziosi
Friday 02 July 2021 21:59
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<p>FILE - In this July 1, 2021, file photo, people walk along La Jolla Shores beach as Independence Day weekend nears in San Diego. Americans enjoying newfound liberty are expected to travel and gather for cookouts, fireworks and family reunions over the Fourth of July weekend in numbers not seen since pre-pandemic days. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)</p>

FILE - In this July 1, 2021, file photo, people walk along La Jolla Shores beach as Independence Day weekend nears in San Diego. Americans enjoying newfound liberty are expected to travel and gather for cookouts, fireworks and family reunions over the Fourth of July weekend in numbers not seen since pre-pandemic days. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

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Some spots in the north-central US will experience record breaking heat over the 4th of July weekend, according to meteorologists.

North Dakota and Minnesota have already faced near record-breaking heat in June, according to the National Weather Service, and those temperatures will continue to climb as summer continues.

Accuweather reports that Minot, North Dakota has already hit 94F (34C) on 1 July, which tied the record for the town's hottest day, which was set in 1937.

In Glasgow, Montana, two records were broken on Thursday, with the high reaching 102F. That broke a record set in 1895 by one degree. The city also broke its minimum temperature at that time of year, which was 70F (21C) in 1921. It reported lows of 68F (20C) on Thursday morning.

Minot is also expected to break its daily record for 2 July, which was set in 1935, and its daily record on 3 July set in 2017 when it rises into the upper 90's on both days.

A cooling center in Portland, Oregon, which has faced punishing record-setting heat in recent days.

Other cities are expected to shatter their daily high records over the weekend as well. Dickinson, Grand Forks and Fargo are all slated to see record highs.

The Midwest will largely dodge the country's harshest weather over the weekend. The US West is expected to be extremely hot and dry over the weekend, while the US South is expected to face widespread rainfall.

However, Midwest states should still expect a hot 4th of July.

Minneapolis has already reported temperatures in the high 80's (30+C). The temperature in the city on 4 July is expected to be 93F (34C).

Some areas along the Great Lakes may see a dip in temperatures due to a cold front moving in from Alberta, Canada. While it may give those areas a break from the heat, it may also spoil the weekend with thunderstorms.

With the temperature well over 100 degrees, Spokane, Wash., firefighter Sean Condon, left and Lt. Gabe Mills, assigned to the Alternative Response Unit of of Station 1, check on the welfare of a man in Mission Park in Spokane, Wash., Tuesday, June 29, 2021. The special fire unit, which responds to low priority calls, has been kept busy during this week's heatwave.

Unfortunately that rainfall is unlikely to do much to curb the ongoing megadrought in the northern Great Plains and US West.

Several states have declared drought emergencies, including Montana, where 60 per cent of the state is experiencing severe drought.

South Dakota has also reported that 70 per cent of the state is under a severe drought.

Despite its proximity to the Great Lakes people in Chicago will still have high heat to deal with over the weekend. Highs there are expected to in the upper 80s(30+c) on Saturday and lower 90's on Sunday.

In the north-central part of the country Independence Day celebrations may be dulled by dark skies due to the smoke floating in the air from ongoing wildfires.

"People in the North Central states can see a milky sky as air in the upper levels of the atmosphere bring it east from the Northwest," Matt Benz, AccuWeather Senior Metorologist, said.

Mr Benz said he does not believe that the smoke will impact anyone planning to view fireworks over the weekend.

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