The West may be melting amid historic heat wave but relief is in sight

But one of the biggest record smashers was Las Vegas, which reached 120 degrees on Sunday, breaking their previous hottest day by three degrees.

LAS VEGAS — "We’re melting."

It’s figurative if you’re a person; literal if you’re a crayon that happened to be left outside amid an ongoing historic heat wave that continues to bake the West with temperatures that would make 100 degrees feel like a cool down.

So far, 14 weather stations across the West whose weather records go back 50 years or more have set new all-time temperature records with the current heat wave.

That includes Palm Springs at 124 degrees, Redding, California at 119 degrees, Fresno, California at 114 degrees, and Bishop, California at 111 degrees.


But one of the biggest record smashers was Las Vegas, which reached 120 degrees on Sunday, breaking its previous hottest day by three degrees.

The National Weather Service office there used the historic occasion to conduct a few science experiments, which included attempting to bake cookies on the dashboard of a dark-colored vehicle.

The cookies were put in at noon as the temperature on the dashboard reached 217 degrees, according to an infrared thermometer. Roughly 45 minutes later, the cookies looked…somewhat baked.

In addition, the meteorologists tapped into their artistic sides and set out a rainbow of crayons to see if they could survive the 120-degree heat.

They didn’t.

The heat dome that has been baking the West is expected to hang through the middle of the week, with roughly 55 million people across the West still under heat alerts.

Las Vegas’ forecast high temperatures for Wednesday and Thursday are 118 degrees—which would each have been the hottest temperature recorded there before Sunday, but it is now competing for the silver medal.

Relatively cooler weather is expected toward the end of the week, with high temperatures in Las Vegas falling under 110 degrees, but temperatures are expected to remain above average.