Beachgoers flock to Avila to beat the heat in SLO County
Paso Robles just recorded its first triple-digit day of 2019, signifying that the dreary, winter-like weather of May is giving way to sunny skies and warmer temperatures.
On Tuesday, the Paso Robles Airport recorded a high temperature of 101 degrees Fahrenheit, the hottest it’s been in the area all year.
But it’s by no means a record. The highest recorded temperature for June 4 is 107 degrees, recorded in 1996, according to PG&E meteorologist John Lindsey.
Since the beginning of 2019, Paso Robles hit 90 degrees on April 23 and 91 on April 24, Lindsey said. The area recorded a 90-degree temperature on May 13, but stayed below 90 degrees for the rest of the month.
Though it’s been warm in Paso Robles, coastal areas have seen cool temperatures and gloomy mornings recently — the result of something called the “temperature inversion layer,” Lindsey said.
That means a mass of dense, cold air is coming off the ocean and settling on lower-lying areas, while a layer of warm, less-dense air sits on top.
When those two air masses mix, they create fog and low-lying clouds, Lindsey said. The fog and clouds dissipate above a certain elevation — generally, the Cuesta Grade is a good reference point — which leaves the inland, higher-elevation areas sunny and warm. The inversion layer is more common in summertime.
But the inversion layer — and those cloudy beach mornings — should be gone for the weekend, Lindsey said.
On Friday, strong to gale-force winds will blow through the area, meaning that south-facing beaches in communities such as Cayucos and Avila Beach could see temperatures in the mid- to high 70s, Lindsey said.
On Saturday and Sunday, northeasterly Santa Lucia winds are forecast to push the marine layer out to sea, which means there should be sunshine at all San Luis Obispo County beaches, including spots in Morro Bay and Los Osos.
“The temperatures should be gorgeous,” Lindsey said.
Paso Robles is expected to see slightly cooler temperatures. The high on Saturday is forecast to be 88 degrees and the high on Sunday is expected to be 94 degrees, according to Lindsey.
In San Luis Obispo, temperatures are forecast to warm up to the low to mid-80s over the weekend.
San Luis Obispo last saw temperatures exceeding 80 degrees on April 23, when the high temperature was 83 degrees, Lindsey said.
Lindsey warned that if winds are stronger than predicted, the temperatures could be higher than forecast.
“It depends on what those winds do; during the late morning hours, temperatures can rocket easily,” Lindsey said. “It’s astounding how fast those temperatures can change.”