We’ve reached mid-January and the midway point of meteorological winter and this one is already one for the records.
Today makes the half-way point of meteorological winter, the month of December, January and February are the winter months and used for record keeping purposed. This winter has been a strange one to-date. Since December first a whopping 35 days have averaged above normal producing an average temperature of 37.9°, that’s good for for the 10th warmest winter on record and ties with winter of 2019-2020.
Other noteworthy aspects of thus winter thus far include;
A severe weather outbreak in early December, producing the first tornado watch in Indianapolis of 2021
Twelve days with a 60-degree temperature or warmer (second most on record and most since 1890)
Eight nights under 20-degrees, average is thirteen
and Finally, THE LEAST SNOWIEST WINTER ON RECORD.
THE “SNOW HOLE”
Earlier in the week we did some digging and found that the lack of snowfall this season ties for the least snowiest on record with 1941. Through the 14th of January, there has only been a half-inch of snow (.5″) all falling on the 14th of November. We dug a little deeper and narrowing our search asked, when was the last time we went through all of December and well into January without any measured snow? The record scan revealed – never. Or at least in the 137 years of snowfall records. We called it the snow hole.
The gap or hole is remarkable and it is the only location in the entire Midwest where no snow has been measured and runs from south-central Illinois through most of central Indiana.
For comparison, Nashville, Tennessee has had nearly 16 times more snow than Indianapolis 7.9″ vs .5″ and they are bracing for more this weekend. Even more impressive, Birmingham, Alabama and Lubbock, Texas have also recorded more snow than Indy. So what’s behind it? Mostly dumb-luck but we were expecting a snowfall departure form normal in much of the Midwest. That was expected, and certainly not by this much but it was all to be driven by a winter weather pattern influenced by the presence of cool waters in the equatorial region of the the Pacific. When those waters cool, it is known as a LA Nina winter weather pattern – and the same pattern that we had last year. Remember, we had very little snow until mid February. So, at the midway point, it’s the least snowiest winter on record to-date tying with 1941. We are certain the second half will be much more interesting.
SNOW SLUP CONTINUES AS MAJOR WINTER STORM PASSES
True to form, a major winter storm is underway Friday evening and many locations to our west will see significant snowfall tonight. Locations in Minnesota and Iowa are to experience snowfall rates of over 1″ per hour late Friday with totals that could exceed 6″.
Winter advisories surround the state of Indiana and are expanding as a low pressure dives south overnight. A strengthening low along the Gulf Coast will become the main attraction and spread heavy snow across portions Kentucky and Tennessee, then northeast into New England. Snowfall in excess of 6″ is highly likely including some portions of eastern Kentucky and southeast Ohio.
We are following colder trends as we open the second half of winter, with sights set on possible arctic air late next week. Will the snow follow the cold? There’s no doubt we will get more challenging winter weather in the days and weeks to come. Question isn’t if but when. Stay tuned!