World and Nation

Which Way the Wind Blows

Which Way the Wind Blows

This time of year, one can often figure out how warm or cold it will be based only on whether the wind is blowing from the ocean. The water is still a chilly 55°F (13°C) in Boston Harbor. If there is no sunshine and a strong wind out of the east, as there was last Wednesday when it felt more like the beginning of April than mid-June, our air temperature will be very close to the water temperature in the harbor. If instead of clouds we have the strong June sun, the marine air will absorb heat from the sun-drenched ground as it moves towards campus, resulting in afternoon temperatures near a comfortable 70°F (21°C). With the prevalence of more clouds than sun today, we’ll likely fall short of 70°F (21°C), but it will still be warmer than the past couple of days.

On the other hand, a breeze off the land generally signals a warmer day — with one caveat. When the wind starts out of the west in the morning (or if it’s a calm day with no wind), temperatures will rise quickly but then level out or even drop a few degrees if an afternoon sea breeze kicks in. This situation may play out tomorrow and will yield a pleasant day. However, if a west wind persists during the entire day with full sunshine, temperatures tend to rise above 80°F (27°C), sometimes even approaching 90°F (32°C), especially if the wind is out of the northwest. See the forecast for Sunday.

Extended Forecast:

Tonight: Mostly cloudy. Low 56°F (13°C).

Tomorrow: Mix of sun and clouds. Calm winds in the morning, then a light sea breeze in the afternoon. High 75°F (24°C).

Tomorrow night: Mostly clear. Low 63°F (17°C).

Father’s Day: Sunny in the morning, then increasing clouds with isolated showers and thunderstorms. Light westerly winds. High 84°F (29°C).