Friday, November 16, 2012

Key West in November

November is a good month to visit Key West.

It's shoulder season, about to go into peak, so still a little cheaper and quite a lot LESS busy than peak time, which is really good because it means you can get into restaurants, find space at the beach, order a drink quicker at the bar etc.

But if you like it mad busy, then come January to March time and you'll get your wish.

In November, the weather has broken - that is to say,  the stifling heat and humidity of July to early October has gone.  Which is very good!  But the weather can be a bit variable some years.

Our visit this week, in early November 2012, is a great example......

At the beginning of this week just gone, I took this screenshot of the forecast for Key West.  It's definitely slightly colder than usual in November.  And look at that 20% rain on the forecast ALL WEEK....Looks like we were set for a BAD week in Key West.

And here's the hour by hour forecast for Monday, which makes you want to head to a Duval bar early and settle in for a long drinking session!....20% rain every hour!!!

Doesn't look too good, right? So, how did it pan out, for real?

Actually, good! Phew!

20% rain here actually means: "20% chance of a small drizzle or dribble of rain, over very quickly."  Not a prolonged rain shower for hours (like back home!).

Here's what really happened this week:

Monday - From 9am to 11am it was lovely, strong sunshine, enough to make you feel a little bit burned. Yes, it was that hot. Here's what the sky looked like...
Then at 11am, it turned overcast-ish for an hour:
And yes it DID rain... but ... 2 drizzle showers for 3 minutes each.  It was so light I did not need to go in, and I stayed outside.   And that the rain for the whole day, the rest of the day fine with hot sunshine.

Tuesday - No rain at all.  Hot and sunny all day.  Some hazy cloud for a few hours in the morning but the sun came through it anyway.  Actually, despite the haze, less breeze meant it felt real hot.  Temp: 81. In only 3 hours in the morning sun and factor 15, we both got a little burned/red.

Wednesday - Today's forecast STILL predicting 20% rain, just like yesterday.  Morning was lovely, strong sun.  Then heavy cloud came over at 1pm for the rest of the afternoon.  No sunbathing this afternoon.  Cleared in the evening.  No rain.

Thursday - Maybe the most perfect day's weather I've ever had in Key West. Clear skies, 80 degrees, light wind - absolutely sublime!  So much for 20% chance of rain.  I saw 6 tiny clouds all day. Wonderful blue skies.  See here for a post on today's weather.

Friday - forecast said heavy cloud in morning and worse in afternoon.  What happened: moderate cloud in morning (enough to just about sunbathe).  Then, big surprise, turned fine from 1pm to 3.30pm.  Hot and lovely.  Then clouded over.  No rain.  

So, basically, a 20% chance of rain, in November to May anyway, usually means a few drops, or a single thundershower and it's over and back to lovely weather for the rest of the day.  So don't worry!