Cape May’s Driest June in 20 Years 2014

Cape May, NJ -  The prediction was for thunderstorms. There was thunder. And lightning. But where was the rain? When last night’s storm was over, Cape May got less than a tenth of an inch, barely enough to wet the soil’s surface.

That’s how it’s been for the last month.

The National Weather Service tallies Cape May’s June 2014 rainfall at just 1.3 inches – the lowest in the last 20 years.  (1997 tied with 2014 for the honors.) Normally, Cape May gets about three and a half inches of rain in June. It’s usually one of the wetter months.

Tourists are delighted. Anyone who planned an early summer vacation in Cape May has been rewarded with bright, sunny skies and no rainy days.

While rain is a dirty word in the shore tourism industry, this drastic drying is causing farms and gardens to shrivel and ground water supplies to be tapped at a faster rate than the water can be replenished.

Ironically, last June was the rainiest June in the last 20 years. Cape May got over seven inches of rain last June. Big contrast to just over an inch of rain this year.

This year, the skies are the bluest of blues.  Not a rain cloud in sight. Beachgoers are taking full advantage of the situation.

Weather Forecast: Sunny and Dry

Cape May seems to be the only community abandoned by the rain gods.

Adam Rutt from NBC 40 tweeted after one June rainstorm that Egg Harbor Township and Millville each got over a half inch of rain.  Cape May? Just five one hundreths of an inch. Ooh, that hurts.

National Weather Service Meteorologist Gary Szatkowski says it appears Cape May’s part of a dry pattern that’s also affecting the cental Delmarva penninsula.

If the last 20 years of precipitation history is a guide, we should expect to get a little more rain in July, but not an excessive amount.  On the plus side, experience  tells us that dry summers usually yield flavorful Jersey tomatoes. Problem is, there might not be as many of them.

Editor’s Note: Thanks to Hurricane Arthur, we did get over an inch of much needed rain in early July. Nothing since then. Follow @capemay on Twitter for frequent updates.

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About Jane Kashlak

Jane Kashlak is a journalist, a gardener and a Cape Island resident. She's also Cape May Times' photographer. She founded Cape May Times after a long and lively career in TV news.