Kids play at the splash pad at Northgate Park on June 21, 2021 (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Salem is expected to see its hottest ever June temperatures this weekend as warm air from the Great Basin migrates toward the Northwest.

Sunday’s high in Salem is expected to be 108 degrees, which would make it the hottest June day ever recorded locally.

Salem has hit 108 degrees three other times in recorded history: Aug. 9, 1981, July 15, 1942, and July 23, 1927.

The weekend’s heat wave is caused by two factors. The first is an “extraordinarily strong ridge of upper level high pressure,” the National Weather Service Seattle office said on Twitter. That creates a stagnant area where hot air becomes trapped in the atmosphere rather than escaping, leading to hotter temperatures on the ground.

The second is a “thermal trough,” a lower pressure area near the ground that pulls in hot air from elsewhere.

“Pretty much what this combination is doing, it’s taking some very warm air from the Great Basin and pulling it over our area,” said David Bishop, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Portland.

The hottest day in June was 105 degrees, a record set on June 22, 1992. June’s average high temperature in Salem is 74 degrees.

Here’s the latest three-day forecast:

Friday, June 25

High: 93 °F

Low: 67 °F

Record high: 100 °F (set in 2006)

Saturday, June 26

High: 103 °F

Low 69 °F

Record high: 103 °F (set in 2006)

Sunday, June 27

High: 108 °F 

Low: 67 °F

Record high: 99 °F (set in 2000)

Contact reporter Rachel Alexander: [email protected] or 503-575-1241.

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