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Average Weather at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) Alabama, United States

At Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker), the summers are long, hot, and oppressive; the winters are short and cold; and it is wet and partly cloudy year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 41°F to 91°F and is rarely below 27°F or above 97°F.

The hot season lasts for 4.3 months, from May 16 to September 25, with an average daily high temperature above 85°F. The hottest day of the year is July 22, with an average high of 91°F and low of 73°F.

The cool season lasts for 2.9 months, from November 30 to February 24, with an average daily high temperature below 67°F. The coldest day of the year is January 17, with an average low of 41°F and high of 60°F.

Average High and Low Temperature

The daily average high (red line) and low (blue line) temperature, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted lines are the corresponding average perceived temperatures.

The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the entire year of hourly average temperatures. The horizontal axis is the day of the year, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.

Average Hourly Temperature

Average Hourly Temperature at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM4 AM8 AM12 PM4 PM8 PM12 AMhotcoldcoolchillywarmcomfortable
The average hourly temperature, color coded into bands: frigid < 15°F < freezing < 32°F < chilly < 45°F < cold < 55°F < cool < 65°F < comfortable < 75°F < warm < 85°F < hot < 95°F < sweltering. The shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight.

Clouds

At Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker), the average percentage of the sky covered by clouds experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The clearer part of the year at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) begins around August 31 and lasts for 3.3 months, ending around December 10. On October 27, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 66% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 34% of the time.

The cloudier part of the year begins around December 10 and lasts for 8.7 months, ending around August 31. On July 12, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 55% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 45% of the time.

Cloud Cover Categories

Cloud Cover Categories at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)clearercloudierJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%Oct 2766%Oct 2766%Jul 1245%Jul 1245%Aug 3156%Aug 3156%Dec 1055%Dec 1055%clearmostly cloudyovercastmostly clearpartly cloudy
The percentage of time spent in each cloud cover band, categorized by the percentage of the sky covered by clouds: clear < 20% < mostly clear < 40% < partly cloudy < 60% < mostly cloudy < 80% < overcast.

Precipitation

A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. The chance of wet days at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) varies significantly throughout the year.

The wetter season lasts 3.1 months, from June 1 to September 4, with a greater than 36% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 54% on July 18.

The drier season lasts 8.9 months, from September 4 to June 1. The smallest chance of a wet day is 18% on October 16.

Among wet days, we distinguish between those that experience rain alone, snow alone, or a mixture of the two. Based on this categorization, the most common form of precipitation throughout the year is rain alone, with a peak probability of 54% on July 18.

Daily Chance of Precipitation

Daily Chance of Precipitation at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)wetdrydryJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Jul 1854%Jul 1854%Oct 1618%Oct 1618%Jan 129%Jan 129%Jun 137%Jun 137%Sep 436%Sep 436%rain
The percentage of days in which various types of precipitation are observed, excluding trace quantities: rain alone, snow alone, and mixed (both rain and snow fell in the same day).

Rainfall

To show variation within the months and not just the monthly totals, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) experiences significant seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.

Rain falls throughout the year at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker). The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around March 3, with an average total accumulation of 5.3 inches.

The least rain falls around October 19, with an average total accumulation of 2.8 inches.

Average Monthly Rainfall

The average rainfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average liquid-equivalent snowfall.

Sun

The length of the day at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) varies significantly over the course of the year. In 2017, the shortest day is December 21, with 10 hours, 7 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 20, with 14 hours, 11 minutes of daylight.

Hours of Daylight and Twilight

Hours of Daylight and Twilight at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 hr24 hr4 hr20 hr8 hr16 hr12 hr12 hr16 hr8 hr20 hr4 hr24 hr0 hr12 hr, 6 minMar 2012 hr, 6 minMar 2014 hr, 11 minJun 2014 hr, 11 minJun 2012 hr, 8 minSep 2212 hr, 8 minSep 2210 hr, 7 minDec 2110 hr, 7 minDec 21nightnightday
The number of hours during which the Sun is visible (black line). From bottom (most yellow) to top (most gray), the color bands indicate: full daylight, twilight (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and full night.

The earliest sunrise is at 5:38 AM on June 11, and the latest sunrise is 1 hour, 23 minutes later at 7:01 AM on November 4. The earliest sunset is at 4:39 PM on December 3, and the latest sunset is 3 hours, 11 minutes later at 7:51 PM on June 29.

Daylight saving time (DST) is observed at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) during 2017, starting in the spring on March 12, lasting 7.8 months, and ending in the fall on November 5.

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM2 AM4 AM6 AM8 AM10 AM12 PM2 PM4 PM6 PM8 PM10 PM12 AMJun 115:38 AMJun 115:38 AM7:51 PMJun 297:51 PMJun 29Dec 34:39 PMDec 34:39 PM7:01 AMNov 47:01 AMNov 4Mar 12DSTMar 12DSTDSTNov 5DSTNov 5daynightnightnightnight
The solar day over the course of the year 2017. From bottom to top, the black lines are the previous solar midnight, sunrise, solar noon, sunset, and the next solar midnight. The day, twilights (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and night are indicated by the color bands from yellow to gray. The transitions to and from daylight saving time are indicated by the 'DST' labels.

Humidity

We base the humidity comfort level on the dew point, as it determines whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid. Unlike temperature, which typically varies significantly between night and day, dew point tends to change more slowly, so while the temperature may drop at night, a muggy day is typically followed by a muggy night.

Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) experiences extreme seasonal variation in the perceived humidity.

The muggier period of the year lasts for 5.4 months, from May 4 to October 15, during which time the comfort level is muggy, oppressive, or miserable at least 26% of the time. The muggiest day of the year is July 24, with muggy conditions 97% of the time.

The least muggy day of the year is January 31, with muggy conditions 1% of the time.

Humidity Comfort Levels

Humidity Comfort Levels at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)muggyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Jan 311%Jan 311%97%Jul 2497%Jul 24May 426%May 426%Oct 1526%Oct 1526%miserablemiserabledrydryoppressiveoppressivehumidhumidcomfortablecomfortable
The percentage of time spent at various humidity comfort levels, categorized by dew point: dry < 55°F < comfortable < 60°F < humid < 65°F < muggy < 70°F < oppressive < 75°F < miserable.

Wind

This section discusses the wide-area hourly average wind vector (speed and direction) at 10 meters above the ground. The wind experienced at any given location is highly dependent on local topography and other factors, and instantaneous wind speed and direction vary more widely than hourly averages.

The average hourly wind speed at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) experiences mild seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The windier part of the year lasts for 7.6 months, from September 25 to May 13, with average wind speeds of more than 2.9 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is February 26, with an average hourly wind speed of 3.5 miles per hour.

The calmer time of year lasts for 4.4 months, from May 13 to September 25. The calmest day of the year is August 6, with an average hourly wind speed of 2.2 miles per hour.

Average Wind Speed

Average Wind Speed at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)windywindyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0.0 mph0.5 mph1.0 mph1.5 mph2.0 mph2.5 mph3.0 mph3.5 mph4.0 mph4.5 mph5.0 mph5.5 mphFeb 263.5 mphFeb 263.5 mphAug 62.2 mphAug 62.2 mphSep 252.9 mphSep 252.9 mphMay 132.9 mphMay 132.9 mph
The average of mean hourly wind speeds (dark gray line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

The predominant average hourly wind direction at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) varies throughout the year.

The wind is most often from the south for 3.1 months, from March 9 to June 11, with a peak percentage of 35% on April 18. The wind is most often from the east for 2.9 months, from August 15 to November 11, with a peak percentage of 47% on September 8. The wind is most often from the north for 3.9 months, from November 11 to March 9, with a peak percentage of 35% on January 1.

Wind Direction

Wind Direction at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)NSWENJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%20%80%40%60%60%40%80%20%100%0%eastnorthwestsouth
The percentage of hours in which the mean wind direction is from each of the four cardinal wind directions (north, east, south, and west), excluding hours in which the mean wind speed is less than 1 mph. The lightly tinted areas at the boundaries are the percentage of hours spent in the implied intermediate directions (northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest).

Water Temperature

Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) is located near a large body of water (e.g., ocean, sea, or large lake). This section reports on the wide-area average surface temperature of that water.

The average water temperature experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The time of year with warmer water lasts for 3.9 months, from June 8 to October 6, with an average temperature above 80°F. The day of the year with the warmest water is August 13, with an average temperature of 85°F.

The time of year with cooler water lasts for 3.7 months, from December 16 to April 6, with an average temperature below 67°F. The day of the year with the coolest water is February 12, with an average temperature of 62°F.

Average Water Temperature

Average Water Temperature at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)warmcoolJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec60°F65°F70°F75°F80°F85°F90°FAug 1385°FAug 1385°F62°FFeb 1262°FFeb 12Jun 880°FJun 880°FOct 680°FOct 680°FDec 1667°FDec 1667°FApr 667°FApr 667°F
The daily average water temperature (purple line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Solar Energy

This section discusses the total daily incident shortwave solar energy reaching the surface of the ground over a wide area, taking full account of seasonal variations in the length of the day, the elevation of the Sun above the horizon, and absorption by clouds and other atmospheric constituents. Shortwave radiation includes visible light and ultraviolet radiation.

The average daily incident shortwave solar energy experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The brighter period of the year lasts for 3.0 months, from April 5 to July 6, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 6.0 kWh. The brightest day of the year is May 19, with an average of 6.8 kWh.

The darker period of the year lasts for 2.6 months, from November 14 to February 3, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 3.7 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 23, with an average of 2.9 kWh.

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker)brightdarkdarkJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 kWh1 kWh2 kWh3 kWh4 kWh5 kWh6 kWh7 kWh8 kWh9 kWhMay 196.8 kWhMay 196.8 kWhDec 232.9 kWhDec 232.9 kWhApr 56.0 kWhApr 56.0 kWhJul 66.0 kWhJul 66.0 kWhFeb 33.7 kWhFeb 33.7 kWh
The average daily shortwave solar energy reaching the ground per square meter (orange line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Topography

For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) are 31.277 deg latitude, -85.715 deg longitude, and 197 ft elevation.

The topography within 2 miles of Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) contains only modest variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 194 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 229 feet. Within 10 miles also contains only modest variations in elevation (344 feet). Within 50 miles contains only modest variations in elevation (673 feet).

The area within 2 miles of Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) is covered by trees (60%) and cropland (30%), within 10 miles by cropland (47%) and trees (44%), and within 50 miles by trees (58%) and cropland (36%).

Data Sources

This report illustrates the typical weather at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker), based on a statistical analysis of historical hourly weather reports and model reconstructions from January 1, 1980 to December 31, 2016.

Temperature and Dew Point

Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) has a weather station that reported reliably enough during the analysis period that we have included it in our network. When available, historical temperature and dew point measurements are taken directly from this weather station. These records are obtained from NOAA's Integrated Surface Hourly data set, falling back on ICAO METAR records as required.

In the case of missing or erroneous measurements from this station, we fall back on records from nearby stations, adjusted according to typical seasonal and diurnal intra-station differences. For a given day of the year and hour of the day, the fallback station is selected to minimize the prediction error over the years for which there are measurements for both stations.

The stations on which we may fall back include but are not limited to Fort Rucker, Lowe Army Heliport; Fort Rucker, Hanchey Army Heliport; Dothan Regional Airport; Florala Municipal Airport; Troy Municipal Airport; Andalusia, Andalusia-Opp Municipal Airport; Marianna Municipal Airport; and Early County Airport.

Other Data

All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Tables of the Sun, Moon and Planets , by Jean Meeus.

All other weather data, including cloud cover, precipitation, wind speed and direction, and solar flux, come from NASA's MERRA-2 Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis . This reanalysis combines a variety of wide-area measurements in a state-of-the-art global meteorological model to reconstruct the hourly history of weather throughout the world on a 50-kilometer grid.

Land Use data comes from the Global Land Cover SHARE database , published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Elevation data comes from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) , published by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Names, locations, and time zones of places and some airports come from the GeoNames Geographical Database .

Time zones for aiports and weather stations are provided by AskGeo.com .

Maps are © Esri, with data from National Geographic, Esri, DeLorme, NAVTEQ, UNEP-WCMC, USGS, NASA, ESA, METI, NRCAN, GEBCO, NOAA, and iPC.