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How Incredibly Cold Has February Been???


chescowx
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To put it in perspective here in NW Chester County PA where we have records back to January 1894. So with 122 years of historical data this month of February will finish with an average temperature of just 20.9 (Average High was 29.3 and the Average Low was 12.5) this is not just the 3rd all-time coldest February in history (behind only 1934 at 19.3 and 1979 at 20.7) but among all months this will be the 6th coldest month ever!! The top 5 months are below

January 1977 - 17.8

February 1934 - 19.3

January 1940 - 20.0

January 1918 - 20.2

February 1979 - 20.7

February 2015 - 20.9

 

I also went back and looked at last winter from November thru February and the same period this year.

This winter period has actually averaged 0.5 degrees colder than the same period last year. With this year averaging 31.0 during the period and last year during that same timeframe averaging 31.5. The big difference between last year is the amount of snow. While we are already above average for normal snowfall here in NW Chester County with 36.0" so far....by this time last year we had already recorded 76.0" of snow. So as many folks base their view of winter on snow this one will pale in comparison to 2013/14....and it has been very strange as Chester County averages at least 2 storms per winter in a normal season that will exceed 6" of snow in a single storm - and yet we have had not one storm over 6"....the largest storm was the 5.3" that fell back right before Thanksgiving.

Another interesting anomaly is the fact that through February for both 2013/14 and 2014/15 we have had exactly the same amount of below 32 degree low temps at 92 days and the exact same number of sub-freezing days (32 )for both 2013/14 and 2014/15 winter seasons - very unusual. The one difference is last year we had 2 sub zero lows....while this year we have had 3 such days with sub-zero lows.

 

While not a forecaster....I have a strong suspicion that there is some significant winter weather that lies ahead for the NW Philly burbs during March....I will not be surprised if we experience our largest winter storm of the season during the next few weeks....it may very well be elevation driven event with places above 500ft having a significant storm while folks below the fall line have a couple inches of wet snow.

 

Any way you slice it in my mind this has been a truly fascinating winter.....this one has just continued to underscore in my mind how incredible a NWS team we have here in Mount Holly....If I had to shovel all the snow either the NAM/GFS or my Wxsim program indicated we would have been Boston like....thanks again to all the true professionals in Mount Holly and of course to out great professional asset out in NV - Ray who always keeps it real!!

Thanks to all!

 

Paul

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At nearly 2,000 feet and the north end of the CWA, its not too crazy, but yeah, its a different world up there.

Yep well aware of the topography up there, many weeks / weekend vacations over the years.

MPO Feb Ave is 26.0 so -12.5 for the month is really something, Feb Ave low is 17.9 so actual Ave low of 3.5 is amazing in my book.

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