Raleigh’s December and January weather extremes

Posted by Niki Morock on December 27, 2013 

Where were you on December 27th, 2010? If you were in Raleigh, you were experiencing a record breaking snow day. According to the State Climate Office of North Carolina, the Raleigh reporting station on North Carolina State University's Centennial Campus, recorded 8.5 inches of snow, the most snowfall on a December day in our recorded history, which extends back to 1892.

Out of curiosity about December and January extreme weather events, I spent a little time on the State Climate Office's website to see what other historic records I could find.

Do you remember last Sunday and Monday's record breaking warmth? We hit 74º on Sunday and 78º on Monday. By contrast, the highest temperature on record for December in Raleigh was 80º on December 8, 1956. Our lowest temperature recorded for this month was 0º on December 30, 1917.

If you've been around Raleigh for a while, you might remember January's greatest one day snow fall of 11 inches on January 25th, 2000. 80º was also the highest recorded January temperature back on January 2, 1952, and our lowest was -6º (yes, that is a minus sign) on January 21, 1985.

If you're wondering what New Year's Eves have been like in the past, our warmest was in 1996 with a high of 72º. In 1917, we had a record low temperature of 5º, and the most rain we've had was in 2007 with 2.07 inches recorded on that date.

As for New Year's Eve 2013, the forecast is calling for cooler than normal temperatures to continue with a high in the mid-40s. If you're planning to be outside at midnight, bundle up! Tuesday night's low will be in the mid-20's.

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