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Coastal Orange County stays relatively cool as heat creeps across region

Della Madera feeds her dog Kona, ice cream on Balboa Island.
Della Madera feeds her dog, Kona, ice cream on Balboa Island on Tuesday in Newport Beach.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

Summer has officially arrived in Orange County.

With the start of the junior lifeguard season in Newport Beach on Tuesday, meteorologists noted that temperatures have cooled after a particularly hot Monday. Temperatures in the O.C. teetered anywhere between the high 70s in coastal cities like Huntington Beach to the high 90s more inland in cities like Fullerton.

This mirrored other parts of the state, where the National Weather Service noted temperatures in parts of Los Angeles County and the San Gabriel Valley reached the upper 90s and above.

By Tuesday, temperatures were closer to the mid-70s in coastal Orange County and the low-to-mid 80s inland.

“There’s a large spread from the coastline to the inland part of Orange County,” said NWS meteorologist Mark Moede. “You got your 70s, 80s and your 90s all in one county.”

Katie Contois gives her son, Mason, 6 months, a bite of an ice cream bar.
Katie Contois gives her son, Mason, 6 months old, a bite of an ice cream bar from Sugar and Spice on Balboa Island on Tuesday in Newport Beach.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

Temperatures were forecast to climb again about 3 to 5 degrees on Wednesday, where they’ll likely stay through the weekend, according to NWS meteorologist Stefanie Sullivan.

Sullivan said temperatures this week are a little above average for the county but not uncharacteristic of the weather for this time of year.

No daily records were set on Monday.

Moede noted monsoonal moisture would be moving across Southern California starting Tuesday night through Wednesday.

“This is the time of year we’ll get winds ... [that] start to draw in some moisture that comes all the way from the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf of California to our south,” said Moede. “It’ll tap into this moisture and start moving into Southern California. This is how Arizona and New Mexico get their seasonal rainfall during the monsoon season.

“This event doesn’t look like it has enough moisture and isn’t going to be around long enough to bring a strong threat of flash flood.”

McKenna Contois, 2, eats ice cream as her grandmother Christine Herman watches.
McKenna Contois, 2, eats ice cream as her grandmother, Christine Herman, watches on Tuesday.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

Sullivan noted a possibility for some showers or thunderstorms in Orange County once the moisture moves in overnight but said that, as of Tuesday afternoon, it didn’t appear that much of the rain, if any, would be around for long.

The storms, Sullivan said, would move too quickly to produce a lot of rain in any one city in the county.

“The best chances for [rain] are going to be east of Orange County in the mountains and desert, but there could be a shower or a thundershower that does move west of the mountains but the probabilities are lower,” said Moede.

Record temperatures were last broken in Newport Beach in 2017 when the city recorded 102 degrees, breaking a 52-year-old record of 85 degrees set in 1965.

The start of summer and its warmer days is welcomed by at least one proprietor on Balboa Island, Sugar n’ Spice owner Courtney Alovis, who said the business, where the Alovises and their staff sell frozen bananas and Balboa Bars, has been busier than it’s been since 2019.

Eilish Zachary, left, and her sister, Fiona, prepare sweet treats.
Eilish Zachary, left, and her sister, Fiona, prepare sweet treats Tuesday for customers at Sugar and Spice on Balboa Island.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

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