Ed Bedford 4 p.m., Sept. 17
Lowest Temperatures, Latest Sunrise, Fullest Moon, Lowest Tide
Recent Chilly Days and Nights only confirm that San Diego's lowest temperatures (according to more than a century of weather records) tend to occur during the month of January. January's mean temperature at Lindbergh Field is about 55 degrees Fahrenheit. (July's mean is a balmy 70 degrees.) To experience much colder temperatures, journey to the Cuyamaca Mountains; -1 and -4 degree readings were once recorded there -- the two lowest temperatures ever recorded within the county.
The Latest Sunrise of the Year (on standard, not daylight time) occurs Saturday, January 10, near 6:52 a.m. for most of metropolitan San Diego. Slowly at first, then more rapidly in the weeks to come, sunrise will arrive earlier with each passing day. By March the sun will be rising an hour earlier than it does now. The earlier sunrises are mostly a consequence of the sun's apparent movement from the southern sky toward the northern sky from December to June. You can keep track of that movement by noting where the sun rises (or sets) over a period of many weeks from a fixed vantage point, such as your home.
The Full Moon rises regally from the east horizon at around 4:50 p.m. on Saturday, January 10, some ten minutes before the time of sunset. The moon will remain in the sky for nearly 14 hours thereafter, finally setting near the time of sunrise. Some folk names for the January full moon include "chaste moon," "cold moon," "quiet moon," "snow moon," and "wolf moon."
The Lowest Tide of the entire calendar year 2009 (-2.0 feet below mean lower low tide) occurs on Saturday, January 10 at 2:58 p.m. This will be an almost unparalleled opportunity to observe marine flora and fauna within the lowest habitat of the intertidal zone. Saturday's event occurs within a string of exceptionally low tides on successive days: Thursday's low of -1.4 feet occurs at 1:32 p.m. Friday's low of -1.8 feet happens at 2:16 p.m. Sunday's low of -1.9 feet occurs at 3:39 p.m. Monday's low of -1.6 feet happens at 4:19 p.m.