Non-Road Boards > Weather

What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?

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With the heatwave hitting the northwest this week, I've been thinking about heat in the summertime. More specifically, how everyone all over the US says their heat is the worst (I have a family member who insists Memphis has worse summers than Houston!). I personally think humidity is what makes or breaks heat, but that's just my opinion. What type of heat do y'all think is the worst?

I gotta say that humidity makes it worse, but having only experienced 90 degree temps with high humidity, I can't tell if the top two options are worse. Still, I would probably hate the other two options just as much.

Max Rockatansky:
Orlando in the summer, especially after it rains.  That range of temperature usually ranges from 80-90F but the air gets super humid and stagnant being inland.

110F and humid after a monsoon in Phoenix was no joke either but would only wouldn’t last more than a day. 

Have any of us actually experienced 115 degree weather, and if you have, what is it like? I haven't experienced much over 100.

US 89:
The hottest temperature I have ever personally experienced was 107 degrees in Salt Lake City a couple weeks ago. Dew points were down in the 30s, so humidity was not a factor. Highest heat index I've ever experienced was one summer visiting my grandma in northeast Oklahoma. Temperatures were around 100 degrees, but dew points were high enough to result in heat index values around 115.

Personally, I don't think humidity makes all that much of a difference when it starts getting above 100. It seems to me that the real impact of humidity comes when the dry-bulb temperature is in the 80s and 90s. In fact, most of what I remember from that Oklahoma heat wave was how oppressive the nights were. It was impossible to be outside in any sort of comfort at any time of day or night unless you were in a pool. Obviously being outside in the afternoons was brutal, but to be honest I don't think it really felt much worse then than it did in the morning.

The feel of that dry 107, on the other hand, is probably best compared to being baked in an oven. Especially when a breeze came up. At those temperatures there is zero cooling effect with any sort of wind and you just feel like you're being roasted alive. I would take the humid 100 over that any day.

At least if it's humid, you sweat enough to know you're losing water. With a dry enough heat, your sweat evaporates fast enough you may not realize how dehydrated you are until it's too late.


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