May 2023 Climate Report for Memphis, TN


May Climate Recap

After a cool start to the month, May warmed quickly and featured above average daily temperature readings for about two weeks. A bit of cooling resulted in near to slightly below normal temperatures for the remainder of the month however. Overall, the month was slightly warmer than a typical May, as seen in the cooling degree day numbers, which ended above average. The Mississippi River served as a proxy “border” between cool temperatures in the eastern U.S. and warmer temperatures to the west, particularly over the northern half of the western U.S. where warmth was particularly pronounced.
Rainfall was somewhat regular, though not exceedingly heavy, during the first half of the month. However after the 20th, rainfall was nearly non-existent, as evidenced by no measurable precipitation at the airport and only 0.02″ in Bartlett. The airport recorded less than 40% of typical rainfall for the month as low end drought conditions (D0 – abnormally dry) started to appear in the western half of the greater metro area. May was also a fairly quiet month for severe weather with just a few reports of tree damage and hail on the 10th and 11th, when a few Severe Thunderstorm Warnings were also issued. The peak wind gust at the airport of 55 mph was recorded in one of those storms on the 11th.

Memphis International Airport, Memphis, TN

Average temperature: 72.6 degrees (0.5 degrees above average) 
Average high temperature: 82.2 degrees (0.5 degrees above average) 
Average low temperature: 63.1 degrees (0.7 degrees above average) 
Warmest temperature: 91 degrees (15th) 
Coolest temperature: 46 degrees (2nd) 
Heating Degrees Days: 18 (3 below average)
Cooling Degree Days: 260 (20 above average) 
Records set or tied: None
Comments: Three days reached 90 degrees, which is average for the month of May

Monthly total: 2.05″ (3.22″ below average) 
Days with measurable precipitation: 7 (3.6 days below average) 
Wettest 24-hour period: 1.02″ (11th-12th) 
Snowfall: None
Records set or tied: None
Comments: None

Peak wind: South/55 mph (11th) 
Average wind: 7.4 mph 
Average relative humidity: 65%
Average sky cover: 53%
 Click here for a daily statistical recap for Memphis International Airport. Headquarters, Bartlett, TN

Average temperature: 71.1 degrees 
Average high temperature: 83.0 degrees 
Average low temperature: 60.5 degrees 
Warmest temperature: 93.3 degrees (15th) 
Coolest temperature: 42.9 degrees (3rd) 
Comments: None 
Monthly total: 3.05″ (automated rain gauge), 3.03″ (manual CoCoRaHS rain gauge) 
Days with measurable precipitation: 8
Wettest date: 0.95″ (11th) (via automated gauge) 
Snowfall: None
Comments: 62% of the month’s precipitation fell on just two days

Peak wind: Northeast/26 mph (2nd)
Average relative humidity: 71% 
Average barometric pressure: 29.99 in. Hg

Comments: None

Click here for a daily statistical recap for Bartlett, TN.


MWN Forecast Accuracy

MWN average temperature error: 1.97 degrees 
MWN forecast temperatures within 2 degrees of actual: 67% 
MWN average dewpoint error: 2.29 degrees 
MWN forecast dewpoints within 2 degrees of actual: 67% 
MWN’s forecasts extend out five periods (2.5 days, or roughly 60 hours). Historical accuracy statistics can be found here.

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