Should it reach 74 degrees today, Manteca will have recorded seven consecutive days of record highs.
It’s another unnerving sign that the dry winter so far could send the region and the rest of California back into the grips of drought.
The forecast is for temperatures to reach 76 degrees. The record high for today’s date was 71 degrees in 2003.
Based on readings at the Manteca Civic Center weather station record highs recorded this week were:
75 degrees Thursday (The previous record high was 71 degrees in 2006.)
25 degrees Wednesday (The previous record high was 71 degrees in 2006.)
73 degrees Tuesday (The previous record high was 70 degrees in 1987.)
73 degrees Monday (The previous record high was 70 degrees in 1996.)
70 degrees Sunday (The previous record high was 69 degrees in 1976)
72 degrees Saturday (The previous record high was 69 degrees in 1976)
The string of record high is expected to be broken on Saturday when the temperature is predicted to peak at 70 degrees. The record high for Feb. 10 was 73 degrees recorded in 1988.
The unseasonably warm weather has prompted a number of trees to start blooming throughout Manteca a bit earlier than usual. Among those are tulip trees.
Many farmers expect the critical setting of almond buds to start earlier as well given not just today’s expected high of 76 degrees but the forecast that highs will range from the mid to high 60s between Feb. 11 and Feb. 18 before dipping below 60 the week of Monday, Feb. 19.
On the positive side for almond blossoms, the forecast doesn’t call for the possibility of rain until Feb. 27 and then the expectation is that it will be “a little afternoon rain.” Then it’s anticipated to be dry until March 7. That’s when 10 days of rain are in the forecast over a 20-day period ending March 27. Should that occur, the almond blossoms will have plenty of time to set and be pollinated. Such optimum conditions typically leads to higher almond yields.
The continued warm weather could trigger the need for an early South San Joaquin Irrigation District water delivery run.
Temperatures for the first street fair of the 209 season — the Ripon Almond Blossom Festival Feb. 23-25 at Mistlin Sports Park — will be nearly ideal with highs from 65 to 67 with come clouds.
The critical snowpack statewide on Feb. 1 was 27 percent of normal. With no significant snowfall expected until mid-March, the Department of Water Resources announced earlier this month that deliveries from the State Water Project would be only at 20 percent of normal for farmers based on conditions as they now stand.
Typically, most snow in California falls by April 1. Sixty percent of the state relies on the snowpack for water.