February’s Cold Temperatures Set New Records (2015)image preview

February’s Cold Temperatures Set New Records (2015)

Brrrr! It’s cold out there! You might even say “shivery” is alive and well across much of the US and Canada. It’s been so cold that many longstanding temperature records fell in February, and many more continue to fall. So when we used words like “biting” and “stinging” in our winter forecast to describe what was coming, we didn’t do so lightly!

On Monday, February 16, 2015, these cities experienced record breaking low temperatures (in Fahrenheit):

Location New Record Old Record Year(s)
JFK Airport (1987, 2003)
Atlantic City, NJ (1875, 1888)
Watertown, NY -36° -24° (1963)
Syracuse, NY -17° -10° (1943)
Buffalo, NY -10° -8° (1904)
Poughkeepsie, NY -14° -3° (1963)
Bridgeport, CT -2° (1987)
Flint, MI -21° -13° (1963)
Washington-Dulles 11° (1963, 1987)
Youngstown, OH -13° -4° (1958, 1963)

And according to the National Weather Service, a record that stood for 130 years, fell on February 17th:

Location New Record Old Record Year(s)
Cleveland, OH -8° -7° (1885)

Cities North of the Border didn’t fare much better. Environment Canada registered the following:

Location New Record Old Record Year(s)
Barrie, ON -30° C (-22° F) -26.5° C (-15.7° F) (1987)
Muskoka, ON -35.4° C (-31.72° F) -34.4 C (-29.9° F) (1963)

While there’s no question for those in the north-central and northeastern U.S., winter has been pretty rough so far, but believe it or not, both December and January were actually warmer than average across the country overall.

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Feb 19th: A Jeep in North Carolina made this ice sculpture. Photo tweeted by @KDVR Fox31 Denver

And now the south is the target. Frigid arctic air continues to pour in and affecting cities as far south as Miami, with temperatures well below normal. It’s been dubbed #SiberianExpress on social media.

“The cold outbreak of 1899 is kind of the benchmark for cold outbreaks to beat, and this one looks like it’ll either compare or be even more impressive,” said Kevin Roth, lead meteorologist at The Weather Channel.

What about where you live? Did your city or town break any records for record cold (or warm) this winter? Tell us in the comments below!

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Aaron
Aaron
5 years ago

We had our coldest temperature on record here in Lynchburg, VA on February 20th and records date back to 1893. The old record was -10 set in January 1985 and February 1996. We plunged to -11 and broke the all time record of -10. In addition to that, on February 21 we broke a daily record for the 4th consecutive day in a row and the last time that happened was in 1996! And if the cold wasn’t bad enough.. 10 inches of snow fell last Monday then another snowstorm came through over the weekend and dumped another 6 inches of new snow. Ironically, there was virtually no snow to speak of in December and January.

Susan Higgins
5 years ago
Reply to  Aaron

Hi Aaron, thanks for sharing that info. It’s incredible! Stay warm!

Brenda Otis
Brenda Otis
5 years ago

We live 45 miles from Cincinnati,Ohio. We had snow in Nov. Several inches ,then non. And along came 7-8 inches,then another 6-7 and some rain on top of that which just froze everything into a big ice rink. The temp one morning was 26 below zero. We are out in the open and the wind and cold get us. I should have took a photo of that temp but was too cold to think of that. We are due to go way below zero tonight. Set records. Will these kind of temps kill off some of the bugs ??? The ground has been white now for a LONG time !!

Susan Higgins
5 years ago
Reply to  Brenda Otis

Hi Brenda: we are getting this question often about pests – here you go! Do Cold Winters Kill Pests?

Heather-Joan
Heather-Joan
5 years ago

Watertown, NY beat us out, but here in Olean, we plummeted to -30F at our lowest. For at least a week and a half, we were in the negatives for both night and day. Granted, all this is based on who reported their temps to you. 🙂

Charlie
Charlie
5 years ago

Well it has been in the 50-60 Fdegree range here in Western Washinton.

Sandra Labelle
Sandra Labelle
5 years ago

Muskoka, Ontario. We have had upwards of -45 with a wind chill factor. Lots of snow to go with. No one out there has mentioned global warming. Computers just cannot compete with nature. Good forecasting Almanac. Keep up the good works. You were right on in our neck of the woods last year and this. The computer cannot even get it right daily. Brrrrrrrrrrrrr cold. -17 with wind chill factor -27 here today.

Susan Higgins
5 years ago
Reply to  Sandra Labelle

Thanks, Sandra! Stay warm!

Pam
Pam
5 years ago

Vancouver Island is very very warm this winter. It’s been in the upper 50’s for weeks now, flowers are way ahead of usual bloom times. We usually get snow in January or February, but not this year. No snow pack in the mountains at all, looking at another very dry summer.

chris grace
chris grace
5 years ago

i am in NW california near the oregon border & we did not have a winter this year, very warm, no snow, everything blooming bees buzzing…had a little bit of light frost but 60 – 65F in afternoons but anything can happen,,, afraid my fruit trees might get zapped!

H. Wilkie
H. Wilkie
5 years ago

This cold weather everyone is talking about is understandable and interestingly it contrasts highly with the warmth reported in some parts of nearby Canada. I recall many years ago, listening to one, Robert Felix who said it was not global warming but ocean warming which tends to alter world precipitation and that these happenings usually preceeded an ice age!

Tom
Tom
5 years ago

Someone asked if these record lows would kill more bugs. Those of us with deep, insulating snow cover have no frost in the ground under the snow. So how about it Farmers Almanac, will there be any reduction in bug numbers ?

Susan Higgins
5 years ago
Reply to  Tom

Hi Tom, here’s the answer to that great question: Do Cold Winters Kill Pests?

Thomas
Thomas
5 years ago

Its shorts T-shirts and bare feet down here in the SW…Az…we have been about 10 degrees above normal…Hi 70s-Hi 80s …trees and plants are budding out early this yr..no winter to speak of…our little town of Yuma doubles in population in the winter….I am not looking forward to our up coming summer..I think its going to top 120 this yr…HOT!

TLMule
TLMule
5 years ago

I think we have broke records for warm in our location in the mountains of central Idaho (local records don’t go back very far.) None of the old timers remember a Feb this warm. Hardly any snow this winter and yesterday we hit 55 degrees. Worried about forest fires this summer.

Shirley (Bossier City Louisiana)
Shirley (Bossier City Louisiana)
5 years ago

35 degrees here at noon and snowing very hard for 2 or 3 hours.

Lone B
Lone B
5 years ago

At 7:28 a.m. Thursday, Feb 19th, 2015, Blue Grass Airport in Lexington KY recorded minus 8 degrees, breaking the old record of minus 5 set on Feb. 19, 1936.

WallY
WallY
5 years ago

I cannot remember that the jet stream for the eastern part of the country is locked in a deep trough. What is the cause? Will we ever see a strong, dominant ridge ever come to this part of the country?

Marjorie
Marjorie
5 years ago

Here in West Central Florida we had chilly mornings and evenings during January and February, but the afternoons usually warmed up. We had a two day Winter with one night of frost. Temperatures bottomed out at 34 degrees in Tampa, one less than the previous low of 35 degrees set in 1960. Brooksville checked in at a frigid 24 degrees, beating its Feb. 20 low of 26 degrees set in 1923. St. Petersburg was just one degree above its record low of 39 degrees, set in 1958. We have had a good amount of rain this winter, which will help during the driest Spring months.

tom
tom
5 years ago

The west Ben really warm like braking record especially in it Jan.& February

William Dunbar
William Dunbar
5 years ago

I live in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and it has been extremely cold around here this past month. Several nights dropped down to single digit lows, one night dropped down to 2 degrees, another night went down to 3 degrees, and other nights it dropped to 5 degrees and 7 degrees. It has been a brutal February this year in Philly!

mammawbk
mammawbk
5 years ago

We live in Delaware Ohio and our low her Monday morning Feb.23 was recorded at -24 now thats really cold. It’s been a long winter and frankly I am so ready for warm temps. Please hurry!!!!!

Vandy Baca
Vandy Baca
5 years ago

I’ve not kept track of record breaking temps but I know there have been several broken in Dayton, OH. Everything from record lows to coldest daytime temps. I remember reading The Farmer’s Almanac in late Oct. 2014 and it said we were going to have a winter with average snow and colder than normal temps. They nailed it! Now I want to know when normal temps will return and what kind of spring/summer we are going to have in OH.

Trish
Trish
5 years ago

West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee never fall into the weather y’all predict for us. Please consider making a new zone.

Thelma
Thelma
5 years ago

1st day of March, 2015 Southern Kentucky, big snow lingering on the ground and cold. Ready for spring!!