Here in the Pacific Northwest, we thought for sure we were experiencing Indian Summer. It had become rainy and cooler and then suddenly, it was warm and sunny and dry. Hooray…we thought. Indian summer.
Then our local TV station weather person explained it to us, and sadly we learned that our current October weather didn’t meet the criteria!
What Is an Indian Summer?
Here are criteria for an Indian summer from THE OLD FARMER’S ALMANAC:
- As well as being warm, the atmosphere during Indian summer is hazy or smoky, there is no wind, the barometer is standing high, and the nights are clear and chilly.
- A moving, cool, shallow polar air mass is converting into a deep, warm, stagnant anticyclone (high pressure) system, which has the effect of causing the haze and large swing in temperature between day and night.
- The time of occurrence is important: The warm days must follow a spell of cold weather or a good hard frost.
The conditions described above must occur between St. Martin’s Day (November 11) and November 20. For over 200 years, The Old Farmer’s Almanac has adhered to the saying, “If All Saints’ (November 1) brings out winter, St. Martin’s brings out Indian summer.”
So it’s definitely not Indian Summer, although we might still pretend. Next week it will no longer be dry or sunny, and probably not too warm either, and it still won’t be Indian Sumner. However, just today, the same weather person promised us we would not have a very severe winter this year. Small blessings.
This news regarding our lack of Indian Summer was rather disappointing, but the good news is that at least it is still Autumn with pretty leaves everywhere.