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.
Based on the tourism score, the best times of year to visit Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) for warm-weather activities are from mid April to late May and from mid September to late October.
The hot season lasts for 4.2 months, from May 17 to September 24, 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 2.8 months, from December 1 to February 24, with an average daily high temperature below 66°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 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
Mezzouna, Tunisia (5,320 miles away); Adana, Turkey (6,382 miles); and Udhampur, India (7,837 miles) are the far-away foreign places with temperatures most similar to Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) (view comparison).
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 9. 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 9 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
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 3.2 months, from May 31 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 8.8 months, from September 4 to May 31. 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
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 length of the day at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) varies significantly over the course of the year. In 2018, the shortest day is December 21, with 10 hours, 7 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 21, with 14 hours, 11 minutes of daylight.
Hours of Daylight and Twilight
The earliest sunrise is at 5:38 AM on June 11, and the latest sunrise is 1 hour, 22 minutes later at 7:00 AM on November 3. 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 30.
Daylight saving time (DST) is observed at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) during 2018, starting in the spring on March 11, lasting 7.8 months, and ending in the fall on November 4.
Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time
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 16, during which time the comfort level is muggy, oppressive, or miserable at least 25% 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
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 12, with average wind speeds of more than 5.3 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is February 26, with an average hourly wind speed of 6.5 miles per hour.
The calmer time of year lasts for 4.4 months, from May 12 to September 25. The calmest day of the year is August 8, with an average hourly wind speed of 4.1 miles per hour.
Average Wind Speed
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 3.0 months, from March 9 to June 10, 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 46% on September 9. 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.
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 9 to October 5, 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 3.6 months, from December 17 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
Best Time of Year to Visit
To characterize how pleasant the weather is at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) throughout the year, we compute two travel scores.
The tourism score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 65°F and 80°F. Based on this score, the best times of year to visit Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) for general outdoor tourist activities are from mid April to late May and from mid September to late October, with a peak score in the second week of October.
The beach/pool score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75°F and 90°F. Based on this score, the best times of year to visit Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) for hot-weather activities are from mid May to mid July and from late July to late September, with a peak score in the first week of September.
For each hour between 8:00 AM and 9:00 PM of each day in the analysis period (1980 to 2016), independent scores are computed for perceived temperature, cloud cover, and total precipitation. Those scores are combined into a single hourly composite score, which is then aggregated into days, averaged over all the years in the analysis period, and smoothed.
Our cloud cover score is 10 for fully clear skies, falling linearly to 9 for mostly clear skies, and to 1 for fully overcast skies.
Our precipitation score, which is based on the three-hour precipitation centered on the hour in question, is 10 for no precipitation, falling linearly to 9 for trace precipitation, and to 0 for 0.04 inches of precipitation or more.
Our tourism temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 50°F, rising linearly to 9 for 65°F, to 10 for 75°F, falling linearly to 9 for 80°F, and to 1 for 90°F or hotter.
Our beach/pool temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 65°F, rising linearly to 9 for 75°F, to 10 for 82°F, falling linearly to 9 for 90°F, and to 1 for 100°F or hotter.
Definitions of the growing season vary throughout the world, but for the purposes of this report, we define it as the longest continuous period of non-freezing temperatures (≥ 32°F) in the year (the calendar year in the Northern Hemisphere, or from July 1 until June 30 in the Southern Hemisphere).
The growing season at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) typically lasts for 9.2 months (279 days), from around February 26 to around December 1, rarely starting before February 2 or after March 25, and rarely ending before November 6 or after December 26.
Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season
Growing degree days are a measure of yearly heat accumulation used to predict plant and animal development, and defined as the integral of warmth above a base temperature, discarding any excess above a maximum temperature. In this report, we use a base of 50°F and a cap of 86°F.
Based on growing degree days alone, the first spring blooms at Cairns Army Airfield (Fort Rucker) should appear around January 21, only rarely appearing before January 11 or after February 7.
Growing Degree Days
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 6 to July 5, 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 15 to February 2, 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
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%).
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.
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.
The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data is prone to errors, outages, and other defects. We assume no responsibility for any decisions made on the basis of the content presented on this site.
We draw particular cautious attention to our reliance on the MERRA-2 model-based reconstructions for a number of important data series. While having the tremendous advantages of temporal and spatial completeness, these reconstructions: (1) are based on computer models that may have model-based errors, (2) are coarsely sampled on a 50 km grid and are therefore unable to reconstruct the local variations of many microclimates, and (3) have particular difficulty with the weather in some coastal areas, especially small islands.
We further caution that our travel scores are only as good as the data that underpin them, that weather conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable, and that the definition of the scores reflects a particular set of preferences that may not agree with those of any particular reader.