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Unusual weather trivia that is hard to google

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#1
Scott

Posted 13 September 2016 - 07:10 PM

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What are some good and interesting USA weather trivia questions that aren't simply something that anyone can google?

 

I have a few I can think of.

 

What city in the Lower 48 has its all time record high temperature in March?

 

Which city in the Lower 48 has a record high in all months besides July that are higher in July?

 

Which locations in the US have reached both over 100F and -60F or below (I live next to one)?

 

One of my favorite:

 

Without cheating, match the record highs in each month to the month they belong to.  This is for the LAX station:

 

January

February

March 

April
May 

June
July 

August

October

November 

December

 

110

106

104

102

101

98

97

97

95

94

92

91

 

Which monthly record high temperature goes to which month?

 

==================================================================

 

What are some more good ones?


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#2
Phil

Posted 13 September 2016 - 08:00 PM

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I think these might be good ones (just the ones I happen to know, haha).

Which US cities have recorded the most rainfall in 1min, 5mins, 30mins, and 1 week?

Which US city has the largest diurnal temperature variation?

Where in the US was the strongest thunderstorm wind gust (straight line/microburst) recorded?

Where in the US was the greatest 1hr, 6hr, 1 day, and 1 week snowfalls recorded?

Where in the US was the strongest sustained wind and strongest gust, in a hurricane, recorded?

Where in the US were the highest dewpoint and heat index recorded?
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Rain total: 11.58"
Highs at/above 90*F: 16
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#3
Scott

Posted 13 September 2016 - 08:42 PM

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Great questions.

 

Can I ask for the answer on the one below?

 

Which US city has the largest diurnal temperature variation?

 

I have wondered the same thing.  I know of one town that has an average daily diurnal variation of 37.7 degrees.    I know of another ex-town that has an average diurnal variation of 39.7 degrees, but the entire town was wiped out by a weather related geologic event (which could be another trivia question) and there hasn't been a weather station for years.   

 

The average diurnal temperature changes are the following for each month:

 

January = 32.2 degrees

February = 34.8 degrees

March = 31.1 degrees

April = 36.1 degrees

May = 38.1 degrees

June = 47.9 degrees

July = 47.4 degrees 

August = 48.5 degrees

September = 46.1 degrees

October = 44.8 degrees

November = 34.8 degrees

December = 33.6 degrees

 

Unfortunately, the period of record was cut short and the town was completely wiped out.   The period of record might be too short to count.

 

The other town with the average of 37.7 degree daily diurnal change has a very long period of record.

As far as big cities go, I would guess Reno with a 32.7 degree average diurnal change..  



#4
snow_wizard

Posted 13 September 2016 - 08:43 PM

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Is there seriously a city in the lower 48 that had its all time record high in March?  That seems impossible to me.  Florida would seem to be the only state that might be capable of that.


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#5
Scott

Posted 13 September 2016 - 09:40 PM

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Is there seriously a city in the lower 48 that had its all time record high in March? 

 

 

 

Yes, and it is legit.  

 

The city is Brownsville Texas (106F on March 27 1984).   In that part of Texas, late winter and early spring heat waves are surprisingly common.   The hottest temperatures in much of Mexico are often recorded in the Spring and occasionally the hot air makes it as far north as Texas.

There are actually quite a few cities or locations in Texas where the record highs in March (and even February) aren't that far from those in summer.  

In Corpus Christi for example, the record high in March is 102F, while the record high in July is 103F, at least at the airport.  

 

In San Antonio, the record high (at least at the airport) is 100F for both February and March.  The record high in July is 106.

 

In Armstrong, the record high is 101F for March and 105F for July.  There are actually quite a few places with similar stats in Texas.

 

Outside Texas, before 1983 Eureka California used to have it's record high in February (85F in 1930).   Since the temperature has reached 80F on other occasions in February and since freak warm spells have happened in the other usually cooler months, it is possible and the record may be legit.

 

Also interesting is that July in Eureka has a record high of 76F.   All other months have recorded warmer temperatures than this, including all of the winter months.   July has the coldest record high of all the months of the year.

 

On the East Coast, Block Island, Rhode Island used to have its record high in April (it was broken in July a few years ago).  The April record is also probably legit as other stations in Rhode Island recorded very warm temperatures in April 1976.   In Providence, for example, the record high in April from the same heat wave is still warmer than any temperature recorded in May or June.   Even the state record for Rhode Island is higher in April than in May.

 

Also in the Eastern States, Caribou Maine has its record high in May.  This seems to be legit as well.  (A few places in Florida also have their record highs in May). 

 

On the other end of the calendar, several cities in California and even a few in Oregon have their record highs in October. 


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#6
BLI snowman

Posted 13 September 2016 - 10:31 PM

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One of my favorite:

 

Without cheating, match the record highs in each month to the month they belong to.  This is for the LAX station:

 

January

February

March 

April
May 

June
July 

August

October

November 

December

 

110

106

104

102

101

98

97

97

95

94

92

91

 

Which monthly record high temperature goes to which month?

 

==================================================================

 

What are some more good ones?

 

My guesses for LAX, without looking

 

January- 92

February- 95

March- 97

April- 102

May- 98

June- 97

July- 101

August- 106

September- 110

October- 104

November- 94

December- 91



#7
BLI snowman

Posted 13 September 2016 - 10:37 PM

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After cheating:

 

2/12 ain't bad. And I knew those two off the top of my head, since April 1989 and September 1963 were both freakish events for SoCal, so all my guesses were essentially wrong  :lol:



#8
BLI snowman

Posted 13 September 2016 - 10:44 PM

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Which locations in the US have reached both over 100F and -60F or below (I live next to one)?

 

 

Off-hand, I'm guessing Fort Yukon, AK (AK state record high in 1915) and Tower, MN (MN state record low in 1996) are a couple.



#9
wx_statman

Posted 13 September 2016 - 11:47 PM

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Off-hand, I'm guessing Fort Yukon, AK (AK state record high in 1915) and Tower, MN (MN state record low in 1996) are a couple.

 

I have:

 

Parshall, ND (112/-60)

Tower, MN (101/-60) although the 101 from 1901 may not be legit

Ft. Yukon, AK (100/-78) and I don't consider the 100 from 1915 to be legit

Maybell, CO (102/-61)

Poplar/Poplar River, MT (110/-63)

Miles City, MT (113/-65) although the -65 at Fort Keough in 1888 was most likely bogus

Border, WY (102/-60)

 

Honorable mentions:

 

Medicine Lake, MT (117/-59)

Glasgow, MT (113/-59)

Hebgen Dam, MT (99/-60)



#10
wx_statman

Posted 13 September 2016 - 11:55 PM

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Yes, and it is legit.  

 

The city is Brownsville Texas (106F on March 27 1984).   In that part of Texas, late winter and early spring heat waves are surprisingly common.   The hottest temperatures in much of Mexico are often recorded in the Spring and occasionally the hot air makes it as far north as Texas.

There are actually quite a few cities or locations in Texas where the record highs in March (and even February) aren't that far from those in summer.  

In Corpus Christi for example, the record high in March is 102F, while the record high in July is 103F, at least at the airport.  

 

In San Antonio, the record high (at least at the airport) is 100F for both February and March.  The record high in July is 106.

 

In Armstrong, the record high is 101F for March and 105F for July.  There are actually quite a few places with similar stats in Texas.

 

That's true about early-season heat in northern Mexico. They've seen 50C heat in mid-April. 

 

April 16, 1998 brought 50C (122F) to Aquismon and 48.5C (119F) to Santa Rosa.

 

Data courtesy of Maximiliano Herrera. 



#11
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 12:07 AM

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Outside Texas, before 1983 Eureka California used to have it's record high in February (85F in 1930).   Since the temperature has reached 80F on other occasions in February and since freak warm spells have happened in the other usually cooler months, it is possible and the record may be legit.

 

Also interesting is that July in Eureka has a record high of 76F.   All other months have recorded warmer temperatures than this, including all of the winter months.   July has the coldest record high of all the months of the year.

 

 

The 85 at Eureka on 2/17/1930 is a legit reading as far as I'm concerned. Major downslope heating event. Scotia was 82 that day which is in the same general area as Eureka. 

 

That reading stood as the all-time record high at Eureka (along with 85 on 6/6/1903, 9/21/1939, 6/17/1945, 9/6/1958, and 9/12/1979) until being broken with an 86 degree reading on 9/20/1983 and again with an 87 degree reading on 10/26/1993. They can see all-time record level heat almost year round. 

 

FYI Eureka set a new July record high on 7/28/2015 with 77 degrees. 


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#12
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 12:18 AM

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As far as some more trivia questions...

 

Which US town has its all-time record low on March 14th (excluding Hawaii)?

 

Which US town has hit -50F in April?

 

Which town in the lower 48 has seen 52" of snow in a calendar day and has also seen -48F?

 

Which town in the lower 48 has seen 78F and -44F in December?



#13
Scott

Posted 14 September 2016 - 08:09 AM

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I have:

Parshall, ND (112/-60)
Tower, MN (101/-60) although the 101 from 1901 may not be legit
Ft. Yukon, AK (100/-78) and I don't consider the 100 from 1915 to be legit
Maybell, CO (102/-61)
Poplar/Poplar River, MT (110/-63)
Miles City, MT (113/-65) although the -65 at Fort Keough in 1888 was most likely bogus
Border, WY (102/-60)

Honorable mentions:

Medicine Lake, MT (117/-59)
Glasgow, MT (113/-59)
Hebgen Dam, MT (99/-60)

Yes, very nice (I actually live near Maybell). The Fort Yukon and Tower high readings are highly suspect, so may or may not be counted.

#14
IbrChris

Posted 14 September 2016 - 08:28 AM

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Yes, and it is legit.  

 

The city is Brownsville Texas (106F on March 27 1984).   In that part of Texas, late winter and early spring heat waves are surprisingly common.   The hottest temperatures in much of Mexico are often recorded in the Spring and occasionally the hot air makes it as far north as Texas.

There are actually quite a few cities or locations in Texas where the record highs in March (and even February) aren't that far from those in summer.  

In Corpus Christi for example, the record high in March is 102F, while the record high in July is 103F, at least at the airport.  

 

In San Antonio, the record high (at least at the airport) is 100F for both February and March.  The record high in July is 106.

 

In Armstrong, the record high is 101F for March and 105F for July.  There are actually quite a few places with similar stats in Texas.

 

Outside Texas, before 1983 Eureka California used to have it's record high in February (85F in 1930).   Since the temperature has reached 80F on other occasions in February and since freak warm spells have happened in the other usually cooler months, it is possible and the record may be legit.

 

Also interesting is that July in Eureka has a record high of 76F.   All other months have recorded warmer temperatures than this, including all of the winter months.   July has the coldest record high of all the months of the year.

 

On the East Coast, Block Island, Rhode Island used to have its record high in April (it was broken in July a few years ago).  The April record is also probably legit as other stations in Rhode Island recorded very warm temperatures in April 1976.   In Providence, for example, the record high in April from the same heat wave is still warmer than any temperature recorded in May or June.   Even the state record for Rhode Island is higher in April than in May.

 

Also in the Eastern States, Caribou Maine has its record high in May.  This seems to be legit as well.  (A few places in Florida also have their record highs in May). 

 

On the other end of the calendar, several cities in California and even a few in Oregon have their record highs in October. 

Impressive...I didn't know the answers to any of them without researching. I had a hunch on the Eureka, CA one though.


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#15
BLI snowman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 08:48 AM

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As far as some more trivia questions...

 

 

Which US town has hit -50F in April?

 

 

Umiat, AK



#16
IbrChris

Posted 14 September 2016 - 09:49 AM

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What is the coldest inhabited town in the US based on annual average number of nights <= 32F? I'd guess Fraser, CO or Stanley, ID.


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#17
Scott

Posted 14 September 2016 - 10:24 AM

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What is the coldest inhabited town in the US based on annual average number of nights <= 32F? I'd guess Fraser, CO or Stanley, ID.

 

 

It's Fraser if you want to use official data.

 

At the old Fraser station, there was an average of 317 days.   The station was moved to a slightly in 1988 to a slightly warmer location.   Since 1988, the average has been 293 days.

 

Stanley Idaho has 291 days.   Not that far away Obsidian Idaho reported an average of 294 days, but the weather station doesn't exist anymore.

 

The reason I said "official data" above is because it is known that Tabernash, just down valley from Fraser is colder at night.   Fraser though, has the official weather station.

Also Bowdie California has an average of 302 freezing days, but it's more of a ghost town than a town now days. 
 

Which town in the lower 48 has seen 78F and -44F in December?

 

 
Crow Agency, Montana.
 

Which US town has its all-time record low on March 14th (excluding Hawaii)?

 

 

Great question.   I know of several cities and towns that have their record low in March, but I don't know which one would have it on March 14.   Outside Hawaii, I do know one that has it's record low on April 2 and another on March 21, but I don't know which one would be for March 14.

Here are some places I know of in the lower 48 that do have their record lows in March, or did until not that long ago:

 

Iowa (several locations) due to the March 1962 cold snap.  Southeast USA (March 1980 cold snap, though most of these were eclipsed in 1985)

 

Those were in early March though.   

 

In the mountains, White Mountain 2 California has its record low on March 10 and Allenspark Colorado on March 12.

Along the coast of California from the San Francisco Bay to southern Oregon there are several places that have experienced temperatures in March and April that are about as cold as those in the winter months.  

My guess is that the March 14 date is somewhere along that coast?  

 

Which town in the lower 48 has seen 52" of snow in a calendar day and has also seen -48F?

 

 

If not in the Rockies, I would assume that it would have to be somewhere in upstate New York?  

 

Miles City, MT (113/-65) although the -65 at Fort Keough in 1888 was most likely bogus

 

 

Maybe, but there is a chance that it is legitimate.  There were few weather stations in the Rocky Mountain region during that cold snap (January 1888), but some of the ones that did exist reported some incredible temperatures.

 

In addition to the Fork Keogh reading, during the same cold snap, Randolf Utah also recorded a -65F reading, far colder than any modern reading at either location.   It is said that the native Americans in Montana said that it was far colder than they had ever experienced living there.

I don't know the accuracy of the readings, and both the Randolf and Fort Keogh readings seem incredible, but since more than one location reported temperatures far colder than the modern readings at either location, it might be possible.  The January 1888 cold snap seems to be by far the worst severe to hit the Rocky Mountain region in historical times, but there were few weather stations there to record it.  The few that existed reported some incredible temperatures. 

 

Too bad that there was no weather station at Peter Sinks then. ;)   If nearby Randolf really did reach -65F, Peters Sink must have been off the charts!


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#18
BLI snowman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 12:30 PM

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What town in the U.S. has the highest annual precip average to have surpassed that average before in a single day?



#19
Scott

Posted 14 September 2016 - 03:38 PM

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What town in the U.S. has the highest annual precip average to have surpassed that average before in a single day?

 

 

Thrall, Texas?  That would be a 24 hour total rather than a daily though.  Maybe a different place in Texas?  

 

Where in the US were the highest dewpoint and heat index recorded? 

 

 

I had to look it up.  Great question since it was in such an unexpected location.  


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#20
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:21 PM

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Yes, very nice (I actually live near Maybell). The Fort Yukon and Tower high readings are highly suspect, so may or may not be counted.

 

That's awesome! Beautiful scenery and a great climate.



#21
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:22 PM

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Umiat, AK

 

Yep.



#22
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:27 PM

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Crow Agency, Montana.
 

 

Good one! The one I was thinking of was Sheridan (Field Station), Wyoming. 

 

Crow Agency - 78 on 12/5/1939 and -44 on 12/24/1983 & 12/25/1983

Sheridan - 78 on 12/5/1939 and -44 on 12/22/1989



#23
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:36 PM

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Great question.   I know of several cities and towns that have their record low in March, but I don't know which one would have it on March 14.   Outside Hawaii, I do know one that has it's record low on April 2 and another on March 21, but I don't know which one would be for March 14.

Here are some places I know of in the lower 48 that do have their record lows in March, or did until not that long ago:

 

Iowa (several locations) due to the March 1962 cold snap.  Southeast USA (March 1980 cold snap, though most of these were eclipsed in 1985)

 

Those were in early March though.   

 

In the mountains, White Mountain 2 California has its record low on March 10 and Allenspark Colorado on March 12.

Along the coast of California from the San Francisco Bay to southern Oregon there are several places that have experienced temperatures in March and April that are about as cold as those in the winter months.  

My guess is that the March 14 date is somewhere along that coast?  

 

 

Good info!

 

The answer is St. Paul, AK with -19 on 3/14/1971. 

 

Which places have their record lows on April 2 and March 21?

 

Also, the March 10-11, 1948 cold wave in the High Plains came close to setting all-time record lows in several locations. For example Lamar, CO hit -26 on March 11 which was within striking distance of its all time record low of -30 from the great February 1899 cold wave. Likewise Tribune, KS was -22 on 3/11/1948 while its all time record low is only -25. 


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#24
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:39 PM

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If not in the Rockies, I would assume that it would have to be somewhere in upstate New York?  

 

Winthrop, WA



#25
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:46 PM

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Maybe, but there is a chance that it is legitimate.  There were few weather stations in the Rocky Mountain region during that cold snap (January 1888), but some of the ones that did exist reported some incredible temperatures.

 

In addition to the Fork Keogh reading, during the same cold snap, Randolf Utah also recorded a -65F reading, far colder than any modern reading at either location.   It is said that the native Americans in Montana said that it was far colder than they had ever experienced living there.

I don't know the accuracy of the readings, and both the Randolf and Fort Keogh readings seem incredible, but since more than one location reported temperatures far colder than the modern readings at either location, it might be possible.  The January 1888 cold snap seems to be by far the worst severe to hit the Rocky Mountain region in historical times, but there were few weather stations there to record it.  The few that existed reported some incredible temperatures. 

 

Too bad that there was no weather station at Peter Sinks then. ;)   If nearby Randolf really did reach -65F, Peters Sink must have been off the charts!

 

No doubt that the January 1888 cold wave was a historic event, but the -65 at Fort Keough just seems suspect to me. My suspicion is that it was an "on the grass" reading. Even in that era, the next lowest minimum at that location was -52 in December 1879. The Miles City area just isn't known as a cold spot in Montana. In mid-January 1888 the lowest reading in Helena was -41 and in Bismarck -37. That doesn't leave room for a credible reading of -65 in the Miles City area, IMO.


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#26
wx_statman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:49 PM

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What town in the U.S. has the highest annual precip average to have surpassed that average before in a single day?

 

Smethport, PA?



#27
BLI snowman

Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:52 PM

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Thrall, Texas?  That would be a 24 hour total rather than a daily though.  Maybe a different place in Texas?  

 

 

Yeah, them in 1921 or Medina, TX in 1978 would be good candidates as well, but I believe those were only spotter reports.

 

In the NCDC network, I believe Albany, TX is the highest example

 

http://www.wrcc.dri....iMAIN.pl?tx0120



#28
BLI snowman

Posted 15 September 2016 - 12:01 AM

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Smethport, PA?

 

Good guess, but their average is too high (~45").



#29
BLI snowman

Posted 15 September 2016 - 12:06 AM

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Where in the US was the strongest sustained wind and strongest gust, in a hurricane, recorded?

 

 

I believe Blue Hill Observatory in Massachusetts hit 186mph in the 1938 hurricane. Might be the highest official gust.

 

I know the NHC in Miami topped out around 165mph in Andrew before their anemometer broke.



#30
OKwx2k4

Posted 15 September 2016 - 12:15 AM

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Location in the contiguous US that reports a freeze on an average of at least 84 percent of days each year.

#31
IbrChris

Posted 15 September 2016 - 06:22 AM

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No doubt that the January 1888 cold wave was a historic event, but the -65 at Fort Keough just seems suspect to me. My suspicion is that it was an "on the grass" reading. Even in that era, the next lowest minimum at that location was -52 in December 1879. The Miles City area just isn't known as a cold spot in Montana. In mid-January 1888 the lowest reading in Helena was -41 and in Bismarck -37. That doesn't leave room for a credible reading of -65 in the Miles City area, IMO.

For Montana I have the following monthly record lows in my database:

Jan: -70 Rogers Pass on 20/1954
Feb: -66 Riverside RS (near W Yellowstone) on 9/1933 (erroneously placed as WY state record but station was located on MT side of border)
Mar: -45 Fort Logan on 15/1906
Apr: -30 Summit on 2/1935
May: -5 Polebridge on 1/1954
Jun: 11 Kings Hill on 6/1943
Jul: 15 Bowen in 1919 (would like a better source for these readings...may be apocryphal).
Aug: 5 Bowen in 1910
Sept: -9 Riverside RS on 24/1926
Oct: -30 Summit on 31/1935 (major late Oct cold blast in PNW)
Nov: -53 Lincoln in 1919
Dec: -59 Riverside RS in 1924


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#32
IbrChris

Posted 15 September 2016 - 06:24 AM

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117 at St George on 7/5/1985 remains the UT state record but the 118 recorded at the St George RAWS is generally viewed as the state record, at least by the Dept of Atmospheric Sciences at University of Utah while I was there. As long as a RAWS is sited properly (most are as opposed to variable siting standards for COOPs and PWSs). Low temps are more likely to be accurate at a RAWS but because they generally don't have a fan-aspirated thermistor high temps can be a degree or two inflated even when properly sited. For low temps as long as the sensor is 2 meters AGL and calibrated correctly the reading should be credible.

For example I view the -14 at Foster Flat (RAWS) on Oct 31, 2002 as the Oregon record low for October, the only state monthly record low that has occurred since -32 at Ukiah on Nov 23, 1985. The remainder are 1955 or earlier.


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#33
Phil

Posted 15 September 2016 - 07:03 AM

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I believe Blue Hill Observatory in Massachusetts hit 186mph in the 1938 hurricane. Might be the highest official gust.

I know the NHC in Miami topped out around 165mph in Andrew before their anemometer broke.


Yep, that's the one. I think Miami would've beat that, had their instruments held together, however.
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Warm season 2017
Thunderstorm days: 10
Severe days: 5
Rain total: 11.58"
Highs at/above 90*F: 16
Warmest high: 99.4*F
Warmest low: 79.7*F

#34
Scott

Posted 15 September 2016 - 10:36 AM

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The answer is St. Paul, AK with -19 on 3/14/1971. 

 

Which places have their record lows on April 2 and March 21?

 

 

They are in the same region as St Paul Island.  Supposedly Shemya Air Force Base had a record low of 2F on April 2 1988.   To me, the Shemya reading seems very suspect, but St Paul Island did record a -3F a few days later, so it might be legit. (Cold snaps seem to take a few extra days to reach St Paul Island, though I can't figure out why this is-seems backwards). 


The next island to the east of Shemya, Attu, supposedly had a record low of -5F on March 21 1985.   St Paul Island recorded a -2F a few days later, so this seems to be legit(?).      For Attu, WRCC does show one reading of -15F on November 27 1986, but this does not seem legit.  All the other stations in the area were 30-40 degrees warmer, which on a small oceanic island doesn't make sense.   St Paul Island was 24F that day, but dropped to 15F a few days later.   Maybe an erroneous minus sign got placed in from of the 15 for Attu?   Shemya, on the island next to Attu only got down to 27F.

(PS, if you are interested, St Paul Island did record a -26F in January 1919, supposedly at the same location, but the current NOAA site only list records back to 1948).  

For that whole region around the southern Bering Sea, April isn't much warmer than the winter months:

http://www.wrcc.dri....iMAIN.pl?ak8419

 

Farther north, Cape Romanzof, on the mainland coast of the Bering Sea has a record low on March 15 1966.  This one is not suspect.   If the Shemya and Attu readings aren't correct, this may be the latest record low outside Hawaii?

A lot of stations on the Bering Sea have their record lows in March and March is colder than January up in the northern latitudes of the Bering Sea.  
 

On the other side of the calendar, the earliest record low I know of in the US outside of Hawaii is Antelope Island, Utah with November 16, 1955, but alas, there is only 20 years of data available so it might not count.

 

On the record high side, the earliest record high I know of outside Hawaii is Brownsville Texas with 106 on March 27, 1984.

 

The latest in the year I know of for an all time record high is Eureka California with 87F on October 26 1993.  Ironically, Eureka used to hold the earliest record high I know of with 85F on February 17 1930!

 

Does anyone know of any outside these timelines?

 

Also, the March 10-11, 1948 cold wave in the High Plains came close to setting all-time record lows in several locations. For example Lamar, CO hit -26 on March 11 which was within striking distance of its all time record low of -30 from the great February 1899 cold wave. Likewise Tribune, KS was -22 on 3/11/1948 while its all time record low is only -25. 

 

 

The Dodge City KDDC station used to have their record low then too, but it was broken during the cold spell of December 1989.  (Dodge City did record lower temperatures at different weather stations before the KDDC station existed though).

 

For example I view the -14 at Foster Flat (RAWS) on Oct 31, 2002 as the Oregon record low for October, the only state monthly record low that has occurred since -32 at Ukiah on Nov 23, 1985.

 

 

October 2002 was an amazing cold spell for the time of year.  Several cities in Idaho, Washington, and Oregon recorded their coldest day of the year in October.  I don't know of any other times that this has happened in the lower 48.  Does anyone else know of any?  Several cities recorded their coldest day of the year in the first few days of November 1991, but I don't know of any in October (besides 2002). 


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#35
wx_statman

Posted 15 September 2016 - 04:38 PM

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For Montana I have the following monthly record lows in my database:

Jan: -70 Rogers Pass on 20/1954
Feb: -66 Riverside RS (near W Yellowstone) on 9/1933 (erroneously placed as WY state record but station was located on MT side of border)
Mar: -45 Fort Logan on 15/1906
Apr: -30 Summit on 2/1935
May: -5 Polebridge on 1/1954
Jun: 11 Kings Hill on 6/1943
Jul: 15 Bowen in 1919 (would like a better source for these readings...may be apocryphal).
Aug: 5 Bowen in 1910
Sept: -9 Riverside RS on 24/1926
Oct: -30 Summit on 31/1935 (major late Oct cold blast in PNW)
Nov: -53 Lincoln in 1919
Dec: -59 Riverside RS in 1924

 

Yeah the -66 reading on 2/9/1933 at West Yellowstone & Riverside Ranger Station is the same reading. Riverside Ranger Station was located in West Yellowstone and provided weather data for the town, which you see in the WRCC today. That's why the -59 at Riverside RS on 12/19/1924 and the -9 on 9/24/1926 also show up under West Yellowstone. The confusion happened since Yellowstone NP is officially in Wyoming for Department of Interior admin purposes, disregarding the fact that it extends into Montana and Idaho. Makes for easier oversight apparently. Thus any data (at the time) that was recorded at Riverside Ranger Station (in Montana) was reported through the park HQ (located in WY) and was filed under "Wyoming." This is why that -66 reading persists to this day in some sources as the record for Wyoming. The -63 at Moran on the same day is the rightful record for Wyoming.

 

Summit also reached -30 on 4/11/1940 (the day after an 18" snowfall) but that reading has been scrubbed from the books, part of the ongoing issue with QC over at NCEI that's been discussed in other threads. It can still be seen in the Infoplease table of monthly state temperature records:

 

http://www.infopleas...a/A0930220.html

 

On a side note, notice how that Infoplease table is missing the West Yellowstone readings from February 1933 and September 1926. It looks like whatever database that table was compiled from had those numbers under Riverside Ranger Station in "Wyoming."

 

I've wondered about Bowen before, I've never found any evidence of that town even existing. Nothing on Google. It might have been a temporary work camp/maintenance camp/mining site or something else of that nature. There are plenty of apocryphal records from that era from third-tier stations that only existed for brief periods of time and, for all I know, had no QC standards for equipment calibration/siting/sheltering whatsoever. 

 

Also, a minor correction. The -53 @ Lincoln was in November 1959. I'm sure that's what you meant. 


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#36
Scott

Posted 15 September 2016 - 06:19 PM

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I've wondered about Bowen before, I've never found any evidence of that town even existing. Nothing on Google. It might have been a temporary work camp/maintenance camp/mining site or something else of that nature. There are plenty of apocryphal records from that era from third-tier stations that only existed for brief periods of time and, for all I know, had no QC standards for equipment calibration/siting/sheltering whatsoever. 

 

 

Jul: 15 Bowen in 1919 (would like a better source for these readings...may be apocryphal).

 

Aug: 5 Bowen in 1910

 

I have thought of those readings as well, but I believe the August one at least to be legitimate (see below discussion).   There is a Bowen Creek and Bowen Lake Montana.   I have no idea about the accuracy of the Bowen readings or the exact location of the station in relation to the creek and lake.    For several decades however, there was a weather station nearby (Pleasant Valley), but  it is 1600 feet lower than the lake.   (This is the same weather station that some sources list the record September low in Montana [since the erroneously attributed the Riverside reading to Wyoming], but the reading is slightly different on the below).

The weather station (Pleasant Valley) does show the cold snap in August of 1910.   Since Bowen Lake is at a higher elevation and in a bowl like location, it should be a bit colder.  Both Bowen readings, however, are 10 and 11 degrees colder than Pleasant Valley for either summer cold snap.  It is possible thermometer was reading too low (I wouldn't know), but other stations did record cold temperatures during that time period.   Pleasant Valley isn't especially cold on average, but they do have some fairly cold extremes in a few months (including August).   The 15F recorded there in August 1910 (same month as the Bowen reading) is much colder than the record low in June for the time period the station was operating (1906 to 1972).  Also interesting is that the average low temperature in August is lower than that of June, which is pretty unusual:
 

 

982703.JPG
 

Also, since the Fountain Hotel in Yellowstone also recorded a very 7F during the same August 1910 cold snap, maybe the 5F Bowen is accurate?  Many weather stations recorded some pretty cold temperatures for August then (13F at Yellowstone Lake,  7F at Fountain Hotel, 5F at Hebgen Dam, etc.).

 

I looked at some other stations in Montana that existed in 1910.  Bowen wasn't the only place to record a 5F during that cold snap.   Check this one out (notice that the record low in August 1910 is only a degree from the record low in September):

 

982704.JPG

 

There are at least three stations in Western Montana and northwest Wyoming that recorded temperatures of 5 to 7F (Bowen Montana, Hebgen Dam Montana, and Fountain Hotel Wyoming), which makes me think the Bowen reading is probably legitimate.  Even if it wasn't, there is another 5F recorded during the same cold snap at a different location.  Also, many of the stations in Western Montana and Northwest Montana that had weather stations in 1910 reported record cold August temperatures.   Nye Montana, for example had a record breaking 14F on August and it actually has a pretty mild climate by Montana standards.  Notice that the 14F in August is only 2 degrees from the record low in September.

982705.JPG

I really think the 5F at Bowen is legitimate.


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#37
Scott

Posted 15 September 2016 - 06:40 PM

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Anyway, I have personally recorded a 10F at Quinnebaugh Meadows (in Montana) in August, but that wouldn't be an official reading.   This was August 28 2009.  It was so cold that my 2 liter waterbottle left outside the tent (we were backpacking) was frozen solid in the morning:

547778.JPG

You can see the frozen grass around the bottle as well.    I have never had a water bottle freeze solid in August.   

 



#38
Scott

Posted 15 September 2016 - 07:42 PM

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Location in the contiguous US that reports a freeze on an average of at least 84 percent of days each year. 

 

 

84% would be 307 days.

 

Bowdie California gets close (302 days, but maybe it reaches 307 days depending on which time period you look at).

 

The old station at  Fraser Colorado (317 days)

 

Pikes Peak (316 days)

Mount Rainier (probably all days)

 

Peter Sinks very rarely goes more than a few days without freezing.  Ibr Chris says 26 days this year.  

Probably a lot of other locations in the high mountains that have never had a weather station as well. 

 



#39
wx_statman

Posted 15 September 2016 - 11:07 PM

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FWIW I don't doubt the 5F reading in Bowen in August 1910. That was one of the coldest August airmasses to affect Montana in recorded history, along with 1992. 

 

Its funny I actually knew about the 5F reading in Hebgen Dam. But since its been purged from the WRCC (going back to the NCEI quality controlling issue) it no longer shows up in the daily summary stats. I even checked Hebgen Dam earlier this afternoon before I made my post, looking for the 5F reading from 1910 so I could add it to my response to Chris. I should have checked the Monthly extremes table. Those haven't been updated since 2012, so they still show the more extreme records that were recently purged out. This is all pretty frustrating. 



#40
wx_statman

Posted 15 September 2016 - 11:40 PM

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Regarding the Aleutians - I see no reason to doubt the late-season record lows. Their ability to see extremely cold minimums is usually dependent on the amount of Bering Sea icing, which peaks in early spring. 

 

The -15F at Attu in November 1986 is obviously bogus. Probably a data input error. You'll see those pop up once in a while in the WRCC database. 

 

Do you have a source for the -26F reading at St. Paul in January 1919? I can't find it anywhere. The COOP data for St. Paul @ the NCDC cuts off at 1916 and doesn't resume until the 1940's. The thing is though, that reading is not out of the realm of possibility. There actually was a verifiable, major cold wave occuring in SW Alaska in late January 1919. Nome bottomed out at -47F on 1/25 and then hit -46F on both the 28th and 29th. The -47F on 1/25/1919 stood as the all-time record low for Nome until they hit -54F in January 1989. You can also cross-reference the -19F reading @ St. Paul on 3/14/1971, as Nome hit -46F on the 11th and -44F on the 13th. 



#41
wx_statman

Posted 15 September 2016 - 11:50 PM

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Does anyone know of any outside these timelines?

 

 

 

Not exactly what you're talking about, but the early November 1935 cold wave brought readings to eastern OR that would be considered borderline top-tier cold even in January. For example Sheaville, in Malheur County, hit -25F on 11/4/1935. Compare to all-time great cold waves in December 1972 and December 1990, which only dropped Sheaville to -30F and -31F, respectively. 



#42
wx_statman

Posted 16 September 2016 - 12:06 AM

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I did some more digging on Bowen, MT.

 

Their original COOP observation forms are available @ the NCDC. Station #241022 with a period of record from 1906-1921. Located in Beaverhead County which is to the west of Yellowstone. This county also contains Wisdom, a known cold spot. 

 

Here's August 1910 showing the 5F reading on the 25th:

 

http://www1.ncdc.noa...72048A85915.pdf



#43
OKwx2k4

Posted 16 September 2016 - 12:16 AM

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84% would be 307 days.

Bowdie California gets close (302 days, but maybe it reaches 307 days depending on which time period you look at).

The old station at Fraser Colorado (317 days)

Pikes Peak (316 days)

Mount Rainier (probably all days)

Peter Sinks very rarely goes more than a few days without freezing. Ibr Chris says 26 days this year.

Probably a lot of other locations in the high mountains that have never had a weather station as well.


Was referring to the location with the longest running weather station which was Bodie, CA. Throughout its history 307 days is correct.

#44
Jesse

Posted 16 September 2016 - 08:19 AM

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Just wanted to pop in and say how much I've enjoyed reading through this stuff.

Good work guys!

#45
Scott

Posted 16 September 2016 - 10:57 AM

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Do you have a source for the -26F reading at St. Paul in January 1919? 

 

 

Yes; it's in the old USA Today Weather Almanac.  The book has been out of print for decades now and mine is falling apart.  Unfortunately though, I don't know where the USA Weather Almanac obtained their information.   Here is a photo of that page:

 

982765.JPG

 

I have also not been able to find the reading on the internet, but I suspect that it is probably legitimate since there was an Alaskan cold snap during that time period and since the WRCC says a weather station existed at that time and at the same location (but it the extremes table is only from 1949 and on).   According to the METADATA, the weather station was in the same location, but has a one foot elevation change. 
 

 

Regarding the Aleutians - I see no reason to doubt the late-season record lows.

 

 

The reason I consider the Shemya reading suspect is because the reading shows up as the monthly and all time record low in the WRCC database, but not as the daily record low for April 2.  April isn't much warmer there than in winter, so the reading still might be legitimate. 



#46
Scott

Posted 16 September 2016 - 11:14 AM

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Was referring to the location with the longest running weather station which was Bodie, CA. Throughout its history 307 days is correct. 

 

 

Both Fraser and Bodie could be correct, depending on which years are looked at.  Both stations have a very long temperature record.   Fraser's goes back to 1909 and Bodie's back to 1895.   Fraser has 100 years of data during that time period and Bodie, 62 years. 

 

If you use the entire history from both locations, Fraser would win.   However, in 1988 the Fraser station was moved to a different location that is a little warmer.  So, if you only count the stations that are in their current location, Bodie wins.  (Of note, Fraser usually isn't included in the Nation's daily extremes since there is a rule that stations above 8,500 feet aren't used for the daily extremes). 

 

I guess whichever one is the winner depends on whether you are from Colorado or California (or favor one state over the other).  :)



#47
wx_statman

Posted 16 September 2016 - 11:16 AM

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Yes; it's in the old USA Today Weather Almanac.  The book has been out of print for decades now and mine is falling apart.  Unfortunately though, I don't know where the USA Weather Almanac obtained their information.   Here is a photo of that page:

 

982765.JPG

 

I have also not been able to find the reading on the internet, but I suspect that it is probably legitimate since there was an Alaskan cold snap during that time period and since the WRCC says a weather station existed at that time and at the same location (but it the extremes table is only from 1949 and on).   According to the METADATA, the weather station was in the same location, but has a one foot elevation change. 
 

 

 

Thanks for providing that! 

 

Yeah I have no reason to doubt the 1919 reading @ St. Paul.



#48
wx_statman

Posted 16 September 2016 - 11:21 AM

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The reason I consider the Shemya reading suspect is because the reading shows up as the monthly and all time record low in the WRCC database, but not as the daily record low for April 2.  April isn't much warmer there than in winter, so the reading still might be legitimate. 

 

I see what you're talking about. The Shemya reading looks bogus. Probably another data input error just like Attu in November 1986. Here's the COOP form for Shemya for April 1988:

 

http://www1.ncdc.noa...ADFE9825DBD.pdf

 

It looks like the minimum should read "22" or something, but the second digit got smudged?

 

The Attu reading on 3/21/1985 looks legitimate:

 

http://www1.ncdc.noa...F144E679D4B.pdf



#49
Scott

Posted 16 September 2016 - 11:24 AM

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I see what you're talking about. The Shemya reading looks bogus. Probably another data input error just like Attu in November 1986. Here's the COOP form for Shemya for April 1988:

 

http://www1.ncdc.noa...ADFE9825DBD.pdf

 

It looks like the minimum should read "22" or something, but the second digit got smudged?

 

The Attu reading on 3/21/1985 looks legitimate:

 

http://www1.ncdc.noa...F144E679D4B.pdf

 

Thanks for providing that info on Shemya.   I assume that would probably make Attu the location in the US with the latest season record low outside of Hawaii.

 

Now that I look at it though, even the Attu readings do look a bit strange in the link you provided.   It says that the current temperature at the time of the reading was 29F and there are a several other days with diurnal changes close to or exceeding 30F (March 9, 12, 15, 17, 18, and 21).  I wouldn't think that could happen often (or at all) in the Aleutians, but maybe it really is the case?   

 

PS, since Hawaii was mentioned, do you know what the lowest legitimate temperature in Hawaii is?   I believe Chris Burt checked into the 12F May 17 1979 reading and found it to be inaccurate (it was supposed to be 21F).

 

WRCC has another 12F on February 25 1977, but I don't know if that one is legitimate or not.   If possible, I'd like to correct any erroneous values on the webpage below:

http://www.summitpos...-summits/171585

The Hawaii Atlas actually has a 9F low for January, but doesn't give a source or date, so it seems very suspect.  

 



#50
wx_statman

Posted 16 September 2016 - 04:03 PM

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Thanks for providing that info on Shemya.   I assume that would probably make Attu the location in the US with the latest season record low outside of Hawaii.

 

It looks like Attu is the winner. There are a couple other interesting examples. The second coldest reading on record @ Dutch Harbor was -5F on 4/1/1997. Only colder reading was -8F on 1/22/1986. Appears legit based on the original COOP observation form:

 

http://www1.ncdc.noa...F5D0EC8220A.pdf

 

Wales, AK - on the tip of the Seward Peninsula to the west of Nome - recorded -42F on 3/26/77 which is only 2F from their all-time record low.