Winter Has Arrived
by Kelly Smith, Meteorologist
January 12, 2012 12:22 PM
What a difference a day makes, the second week of January starts out with record high’s and a day later snowfall.Here in South Dakota, we are used to Mother Nature’s ups and downs. We experience the warmest highs and the lowest lows, but usually that is not in the same week, let alone in just a day and a half. Tuesday afternoon, Sioux Falls set a daily record high of 56 degrees, 36 hours later the temperature dropped to only 4 degrees. While not record breaking low, compared to the warm weather we have been experiencing this winter it sure does feel cold.
December and January have been well above average, but what is pretty unique is the amount of records that have been broken over the past 43 days. In the month of December, 30 daily record high’s were broken and 13 were tied with the record high making 43 total records for daily maximum temperatures set in South Dakota in December. January becomes even more impressive as we are only two weeks into the month and we have already beaten 137 daily maximum high temperatures. 13 records high’s were tied in January making an impressive 150 total daily high maximum records in South Dakota during the first two weeks of January. If you total the two months, there were almost two hundred record highs tied and or beaten in South Dakota so far this winter with 193 total records.
(January 9th & 10th Record High's Beaten in Pink, Record High's Tied in Blue)A cold front moved through Tuesday overnight and dropped temperatures significantly. Cold arctic air filtered in behind dropping temperatures significantly
(24 hour temperature change valid January 11th 5:00pm)Wednesday morning snow showers moved across the area and brought light snow to the majority of the eastern half of South Dakota.Temperatures dropped down into the single digits Thursday morning, making Thursday one of the coldest days since March 2011.
(Thursday January 12th Morning Low's)Temperatures will peak in the teen's Thursday and will fall below zero in the overnight hours leading to the coldest night of the winter
.Such a difference from last Thursday when many of us broke all-time January record high's. The golf courses and parks were packed when temperatures climbed into the 60's in many areas.
(Picture taken Thursday January 5th in Sioux Falls Temperature: 60°)
(Thursday January 12th Temperature: 9°)The entire upper midwest has seen well above average temperatures and below average snowfall. The difference from last years snowy winter is well illustrated in these pictures from Fargo, ND.