Summertime, and the Living Is (Surprisingly) Easy


As a new Las Vegas resident, I was warned about the dry, 110-degree summers. Was that all a big lie?

Long ago, locals struck a deal in the hard-count room at the Stardust to spread disinformation about how hot it gets here. If we didn’t, people would figure out just how great our weather really is, and the Valley would be crawling with 4 million faces sucking from Lake Mead’s straw, instead of “just” the 2 million we have now. And then we’d really have problems.

Seriously, though, Las Vegas residents tend to exaggerate the heat—especially those recently arrived from places where summer generally means “go outside and do stuff!” (Sadly, these are often the newcomers who have to be helicoptered back from Red Rock Canyon each year.) Sure, we have stretches that occasionally peak in the 100-teens (Extreme! Heat! Warning!). Our city’s highest official recorded temperature is 118, on July 24, 1942, and a high of 117 occurred on four different days, three times in July and once in June. July temperatures typically average about 105.

August highs start at 105, tapering down to 100 before September hits. And August is our monsoon season, when rainfall and humidity generally ramp above normal. All this said—and getting back to your question—you got lucky. Summer 2014 has been the mildest in my memory. How mild? As of August 25, we had 14 sub-100 degree days this month. And twice the thermometer failed to hit 90. That’s crazy talk.

No matter what the calendar says, our autumn typically doesn’t arrive until Halloween. But if August is any indicator, we might get there a lot faster this year. As for prepping yourself for next summer, here’s a tip: Once the temperature soars past 105, it all feels the same: Freaking hot!

Take That, Haters!

This native would be remiss if he didn’t take a moment to high-five the Mountain Ridge crew for representing Las Vegas in the Little League World Series. Dealing with the bad rap our city gets can be exhausting, so thank you, Mountain Ridgers, for showing the world a different (but ever-present) side of Las Vegas. If our elected officials continue to insist on seducing a pro sports team to the Valley, given the success of Mountain Ridge, the recent Hall of Fame induction of pitcher Greg Maddux and the fact Bryce Harper remains one of the top young talents in the major leagues, perhaps baseball is the way to go. After all, our summers aren’t that bad, right?