Fall in S.A. is wettest ever, with weeks to go
Mark for three autumn months broken in two
With less than 30 days to go, San Antonio has already surpassed the record for its wettest fall — meteorologically speaking — in history.
San Antonio received 23.33 inches of rain during September and October, breaking a record of 19.64 inches set in 1998.
The same was true for Texas as a whole.
State climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon said plentiful rain in September and October made it easily the wettest two-month period on record statewide. September was the fourth-wettest month on record, with 6.77 inches of rain on average in Texas. October was even wetter, with over 7 inches on average, which made it the second-wettest month on record.
Before the rains came, the summer was one of the hottest, driest on record in Texas. Nielsen-Gammon said statewide temperatures from May through August were tied for second hottest and that the summer was also drier than usual.
San Antonio, too, had its share of summer misery: May was the third hottest on record, and June also was the third hottest on record. Less than an inch of rain in each month, just a quarter of the average amount, made for a mild drought.
“It’s fairly common to fol- low droughts with heavy rainfall. That happened in 1957 and 2015, where you had extended drought followed by rain and flooding,” Nielsen-Gammon said.
Galveston found that out: 45 inches of rain in the past two months, the most in the state.
In San Antonio, the 16.86 inches that fell in September made it the wettest on record. October was 15th wettest, with 6.47 inches. (The wettest recorded October — 18.07 inches — came in 1998, when San Antonio and the region experienced a deadly flood.)
Those two months plus November make up what meteorologists classify as fall.
National Weather Service meteorologist Yvette Benavides said that even if no rain falls this month, which is unlikely, San Antonio’s rain total so far this fall has already exceeded the previous three-month record. That was 23.04 inches, set in 2004. The average rainfall for San Antonio in November is 2.28 inches.
The very rainy fall recharged the Edwards Aquifer, the region’s main source of drinking water. As of Friday, it registered 683.8 feet above sea level at the San Antonio pool, which is 17 feet above average for this time of year. It has gained more than 20 feet since May and erased restrictions on outdoor watering or pumping that had been put in place this summer.
Pedestrians attempt to keep dry on Avenue E in downtown on Oct. 24, during a month that saw 6.47 inches of rain fall on San Antonio.