January-February: Record Setting Warmth
The year 2016 finished with a cold and snowy flourish across the Midwest, a stark contrast to the lack of snow the last two Decembers. January, however, brought back the mild conditions we have become accustom to as of late. Not to be outdone, February followed with warmth falling into record territory. While occasional variability occurred with a few brief colder spells, above average temperatures simply dominated the landscape throughout the period.
DESPITE THE WARMTH, WINTER DID MAKE A FEW APPEARANCES
How Can It Freeze at 35 Degrees?
If you are a snow removal expert, you know to watch for refreeze after snowstorms and to do "ice checks" in the morning if temperatures fall to freezing or below. You are also aware to keep a close eye on areas near snow piles where melt water during the day can refreeze at night. BUT, what about when your truck is telling you it's 35°F and your seeing ice up...What gives? Last I checked water still freezes at 32°F!
Inauguration Weather History
With rain in the forecast this Friday, Inauguration Day is likely to run not too far above average on both the precipitation and temperature front. Naturally we have to ask, how does Inauguration normally fair? As we dig back in time, an interesting mix of weather is revealed on this day despite being in the heart of meteorological winter.
December Cold Punch for the Midwest
For much of the Midwest, December will be remembered as a particularly active month of weather. Chicago received 17.7” of snow, making it the 8th snowiest December on record. In addition to a healthy amount of snow, the Midwest also had by far its coldest air of the season push in during mid-December, in a two part arctic blast.
December 2016: Cold and Snowy
The meteorological fall leading into December was one of the warmest on record across the Midwest. The run of consecutive months with above-normal temperatures was a long one, going all the way back to spring for the Corn Belt states. The first month of meteorological winter rang a different tune, however, as it was back to reality for many. December proved to not only be a much colder month, but an active one as well.
November/December 2017: A Roller Coaster Ride
The last month of meteorological Fall and first month of meteorological winter proved to be interesting ones across the Midwest for sure. Here is an overview of what happened in chronological order. We start off with the beginning of November 2017.
Wind Chill Science
Ever wondered why it feels so much colder when the wind blows? At some point during the winter, most people will hear meteorologists talk about the “Wind Chill Factor”. This factor is determined though a formula using air temperature and wind speed. Basically, the stronger the wind speed, the colder it will feel. But why does it feel colder when the actual air temperature hasn't changed? First off, your body is surrounded by a thin layer of warm air from your own heat. The wind strips this warm layer of air away from your body, making it feel colder.