DEATH VALLEY, Calif. -- Scorching heat blistered the Southwest Saturday, where highs between 110 and 120 hit parts of Arizona, Nevada and California, and were expected to stay that way through the weekend.
Temperatures in sunbaked Las Vegas hit 114 Saturday, just short of the record, 117. Phoenix hit 119 degrees by midafternoon, breaking the record for June 29 that was set in 1994. And large swaths of California sweltered under extreme heat warnings, which are expected to last into Tuesday night -- and maybe longer.
Dan Kail was vacationing in Las Vegas when he heard that the temperature at Death Valley could approach 130 degrees this weekend. He didn't hesitate to head to the desert location that is typically the hottest place on the planet.
"Coming to Death Valley in the summertime has always been on the top of my bucket list," the Pittsburgh man, 67, said. "When I found out it might set a record, I rented a car and drove straight over. If it goes above 130 I will have something to brag about."
Temperatures in Death Valley hit 126 degrees yesterday as part of a heat wave that has caused large parts of the western United States to suffer. Death Valley's record high of 134 degrees, set a century ago, stands as the highest temperature ever recorded on Earth.
To make matters worse in California, National Weather Service meteorologists John Dumas said cooling ocean breezes haven't been traveling far enough inland overnight to fan Southern California's overheated valleys and deserts.
Burbank set an overnight record with temperatures dipping to 74, much warmer than the previous record of 68 for yesterday's early hours.
In Northern California, temperatures yesterday hit 105 in Sacramento and 95 in San Jose.
Temperatures also soared across Utah, Wyoming and Idaho, with Boise hitting 105.
Cities in Washington state that are better known for cool, rainy weather should break the 90s this week.