Durham County

How cold is it? Triangle is approaching record territory

How warm will it get? Watch the ABC11 weather forecast.

Watch the ABC11 weather forecast as the Triangle moves into a warm stretch.
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Watch the ABC11 weather forecast as the Triangle moves into a warm stretch.

It’s been cold for a long time and if you’re ready to see a warmup with temperatures, one is on the way.

The Triangle still is in the grips of one of the longest stretches of below-freezing temperatures it has ever experienced.

We’ve had below-freezing temperatures since 2 a.m. on New Year’s Eve, Sunday, Dec. 31. And that’s a record.

There is a little bit of disagreement between WRAL and WTVD meteorologists about the exact length of the previous span of hours with below-freezing temperatures, according to stories on their websites.

WRAL said the record in Raleigh stood at 157 hours and a new mark of 158 hours was set with Saturday’s 3 p.m. temperature reading. WTVD said the record was 159 straight hours at RDU International Airport and recognized the new mark at 5 p.m. Saturday. They do agree that the cold snap we’re competing with was Jan. 10-15, 1982.

There is a slim chance that the string will come to an end on Sunday, Jan. 7, when temperatures are expected to reach a high of right around freezing, 32 degrees, but it most likely will happen on Monday. If it stretches to Monday, another mark could be challenged — the all-time record. Twice before in Raleigh there were eight-day stretches (1895 and 1917) when temperatures did not break the freezing mark, WRAL reported. Those temperatures were recorded on a daily basis rather than by the hour.

Monday’s highs could reach the 40s and by Friday it could be in the mid-60s, if not close to 70.

Joe Johnson: 919-419-6678, @JEJ_HSNews