School and football — autumn is falling into place.
Now the weather is about to take a seasonal turn. Rain clouds are forecast to rush in Sunday afternoon, perhaps around halftime during the Seahawks game. That could bring up to a quarter-inch of precipitation, with more on the way Monday.
“It does look like the long, dry spell we’ve had this summer is pretty much coming to an end,” said Art Gaebel, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Seattle.
And what a dry spell it was. The central Puget Sound area set a record this summer with 55 consecutive days without rain.
The sun-kissed streak started June 18 and lasted through Aug. 11. After some sprinkles Aug. 12, the area stayed parched except for a little drizzle last weekend.
The weather during that stretch was breathtaking, but sometimes left people out of breath. In early August and early this month, raging forest fires in Oregon, Washington and British Columbia choked the skies with lingering, smoky haze.
The last time the area got a good soaking was June 15, when an inch of rain fell, Gaebel said.
As summer ebbs, it can be easy to forget how the year began.
A rainy winter and spring is keeping year-to-date rainfall far above average for mid-September. By Friday, the Weather Service had recorded nearly 28.4 inches. That compares to 21.2 inches for the same time during an average year, about a third above normal.
“We’re still way ahead,” Gaebel said.
Gaebel said Sunday’s system is shaping up to be “a typical early fall event.” The one-day rainfall total could exceed the .08 inches that fell from mid-June until now.
“We’ll have more rain late, late Sunday than we’ve had June through now,” Gaebel said. “July didn’t bring us any rain, actually.”
In the coming weeks, high temperatures should stay in the 60s.
The first calendar day of fall is Friday.