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San Diego Had One Of Its Warmest, Driest Winters On Record

Susan Murphy
Alex Tardy, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service San Diego, explains how he monitors weather systems in San Diego at his Rancho Bernardo office, Oct. 2, 2013.

Drought Conditions Expected To Continue Into Spring

When California closes the chapter of winter on Wednesday, it will be one for the record books. The state as a whole had its warmest December through February since record keeping began in the late 1800s.

Individually, San Diego experienced its 7th warmest and 7th driest winter on record.

Warmest Winters On Record In San Diego (averaging high and low temperatures)

1977: 64.1 degrees

1978: 63.8 degrees

1984: 63.7 degrees

1980: 63.2 degrees

1981: 62.9 degrees

1959: 62.4 degrees

2014: 62.4 degrees


San Diego's drought and above average temperatures are expected to continue through spring, according to NOAA Climate Prediction Center's three month outlook.

“That’s pretty significant," said Alex Tardy, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service San Diego.

“It’s not record-breaking but it’s a very warm winter, which has gone hand-in-hand with a very dry winter.”

The average daytime high temperature from Oct. 1 through Feb. 28 at San Diego Lindbergh Field was 70.2 degrees. The all-time record for that time period was set in 1977 at 73 degrees. The combined daily high and low average temperature was 62.4 degrees.


“Almost every location along the coast here was 2 to 3 degrees above normal,” Tardy added.

Since July 1, which marks the beginning of rainfall recording, downtown San Diego has received 4.5 inches of rain and remains 4 inches below normal.

Tardy said downtown San Diego is not always the best rain gauge for the region.

“Because if you just go a little bit north to Riverside or Irvine, their deficit’s twice as much. They’re below 8 inches in both places respectively.”

Warm and dry weather is expected to continue into spring, with no big storms on the horizon.

“Nothing promising in the next seven days at all. We have to get out to maybe 10-12 days where we might have a chance,” said Tardy.

NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center is projecting a persistent or increasing drought in San Diego over the next three months, with above average temperatures.