Hot town, summer in the city
Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty
Been down, isn’t it a pity
Doesn’t seem to be a shadow in the city
All around, people looking half dead
Walking on the sidewalk, hotter than a match head
Unless you live in the Arctic Circle, chances are you can relate to the lyrics to the Lovin’ Spoonful’s 1966 hit, Summer in the City. Who hasn’t had the experience of feeling wrung out on a brutally hot July afternoon?
Some of us have it worse than others, though. When it comes to unrelenting heat, two major U.S. cities rise to the top of the heap.
When it comes to punishing temperatures, it’s hard to beat Phoenix, Arizona. With an average of 107 days per year that reach 100° F or more, the desert city sees more days, by far, of extreme heat than any other U.S. city. No other city even comes close. Here’s a look at the top ten cities, ranked by the number of days that reach temperatures of 100 °F or higher.
Cities the Most Days at 100 °F or Higher
|City||Days a Year|
|Las Vegas, Nevada||70|
|Oklahoma City, Oklahoma||11|
|San Antonio, Texas||8|
|Salt Lake City, Utah||5|
|Kansas City, Missouri||3|
With so many unimaginably hot days, one might assume that Phoenix would also have the highest average temperature in the country. While Phoenix boasts some of the hottest temperatures in the nation, Miami, Florida, actually has a higher mean temperature. Though Miami doesn’t regularly see temperatures above 100° – the southern Florida city doesn’t even crack the top ten on that list – it does stay hotter year-round than Phoenix, making it a few degrees warmer, on average.
Cities With the Warmest Daily Average Temperatures
|New Orleans, Louisiana||70|
|San Antonio, Texas||70|
|Las Vegas, Nevada||69|
So, where would you rather live – in a dry city with more than 100 extremely hot days in a year, or in a humid tropical city with consistently hot weather throughout the year?
Data courtesy of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration National Climatic Data Center.
Caleb Weatherbee is the official forecaster for the Farmers' Almanac. His name is actually a pseudonym that has been passed down through generations of Almanac prognosticators and has been used to conceal the true identity of the men and women behind our predictions.