August's temps stay cooler this year

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So much for the dog days of summer.

We're more than halfway through August with the month seeing barely a hint of those steamy, sultry, sticky days -- which was also pretty much true of July.

Thanks to a southerly dip of the jet stream, which has been persistent all year, "We've seen more fall-like air masses across the area this August," said Joey Picca, National Weather Service meteorologist based in Upton. Cooler and drier air masses, "reminiscent of fall," have been ushered in "time and time again this summer," he said.

As of Sunday, the average temperature for the month so far at Long Island MacArthur Airport was 72.7, one degree below the norm for that time in the month, the weather service said. The highest daily temperature was 88 degrees on Aug. 10, with 11 days in the low- to mid-80s and five days in the 70s.

As for 90-degree days -- forget about it. There hasn't been one of them since July 20, 2013, let alone a heat wave, meaning three 90-degree days in a row.

Prior summers have brought "cool stretches, then hot stretches and you could feel the difference," said Lauren Nash, also a meteorologist based in Upton. This year, "there haven't been too many extremes."

The average monthly temperature for August is 72.8 degrees, with 80.4 the month's average high at the airport, where the weather service has maintained records for 30 years.

With an airport high of 74 degrees on Friday, some beachgoers at Robert Moses State Park were looking to warm up, with one concession worker saying that "Friday we sold a lot of coffee."

The day before -- when the high was 77 -- "the air was colder than the water," said Tommy Meehan, a lifeguard there for over 30 years. Going into the water "felt like you were going in a hot tub."

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But some weren't complaining. Sitting on the beach Monday with a group of friends at Field 2, Michael McCorquadale, 19, a criminal justice major from Bay Shore, said, "It's been perfect beach weather. Not one day hitting 90 -- it's awesome. The minute it hits 90, you want to stay inside."

As for the rest of this week, the weather service is forecasting highs in the mid- to upper 70s. Looking to the long-range forecast for the final week of the month, Dave Bowers, senior meteorologist with AccuWeather, says he sees the overall trend continuing, with highs in the low 80s. While that doesn't rule out a warm, humid day or two, he said, "I definitely don't see 90 degrees. . . . I definitely don't see hot, sticky, weather."

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