Wednesday, October 02, 2019

SweatFest 2019 still going strong, but not for long!

Every year, we claim September is the last full month of SweatFest. Usually there's at least one cool front - usually in the middle of the month - that brings longterm relief from high heat and humidity.  .  The cool front metric is the number of nights where the low temperature is at or below 60 degrees here in central Louisiana. We typically have at least two such nights in September. 

For the second year in a row, by those definitions, we had no "cool fronts" in September. In fact, according to the KSLA-TV (Shreveport) weather center, this past month was the hottest September on record with an average of 83.7 degrees.  The historical average is 78.8 degrees.

Likewise, meteorologist Scott Pilie of WGNO-TV in New Orleans posted on Facebook that this September was the hottest on record for the Crescent City with an average of 85.3 degrees.  It was also the driest on record with total precipitation of 0.19 inches!

While radiative cooling - due to shorter days and longer nights - has slightly reduced water temperatures, it hasn't been enough to reoxygenate waters. Low dissolved oxygen is the main reason why freshwater fishing - outside of river systems - continues to be subpar. Cooler water temperatures are also the trigger for mass migration of speckled trout into coastal marshes.

The good news is that SweatFest may come to an end next Monday... at least over most of the state. Here in the Alexandria area the forecast calls for highs Monday and Tuesday in the low 80s and lows in the upper 50s! 

The bad news is that we're going to have some unusually hot next few days before the front, with near-record highs. If you're fishing the Rio Rodeo in New Orleans this Saturday, best bring an extra bottle of water or sports drink.