Today in New York Weather History: December 10
Today in New York Weather History: December 13

Today in New York Weather History: December 11



One of the most extended December cold waves on record, lasting two weeks, began today.  During this exceptionally cold period the average high/low was 28°/17°, which was fourteen degrees below average.  Eleven days had highs of 32° or colder, and eleven had lows in the teens.  Additionally, twelve inches of snow fell during the period (with eight inches falling on 12/19).




With a high of 23°/14° (eighteen degrees below average), today was the coldest day of a 10-day cold wave (between Dec. 7-16), in which every day had a sub-freezing high temperature.  And the day seemed even colder because of overcast skies.


Only three degrees separated today's high (35°) and low (32°).  This was also the first of five consecutive days in which the highs and lows never got out of the 30s.


A blustery and very cold day.  With a high of 29° (15 degrees colder than average), today was the first day of the winter with a maximum temperature below freezing.  And by midnight the temperature had fallen to 12° (on its way to 5° at daybreak the following day).  


A vicious nor'easter pounded the City this Friday morning, with winds that gusted between 50-75 mph (Central Park had a 64 mph gust) and heavy rain (2.41" was measured, a record for the date).  The high winds created a storm surge that flooded New Jersey's PATH stations, and pushed the East River up over parts of the FDR Drive during morning rush hour.  The winds also caused elevators to malfunction in some office towers and high rise apartment buildings.




The first snowfall of the season dropped a surprise 2.9" this Saturday afternoon.  Temperatures fell all day, from the upper 40s during the morning to 22° by midnight.  


After drizzle and ice pellets fell overnight, the daylight hours were gray and raw, with just two degrees separating the high (35°) and low (33°).


Fourteen of the past fifteen days were colder than normal, with temperatures eight degrees below average (high of 38°/ low of 27°).  This afternoon a cold rain fell, measuring 1.11".


An all-day rain, that continued overnight into the next day, dumped 2.35" today, and 3.28" overall.  Most of it poured down after 6 PM.


Windy and quite cold.  Today's high of 29° was the first high temperature below freezing this winter.  


Today was the first colder than average day in three weeks, as the high/low of 39°/29° was five degrees below average.  Between Nov. 20 and yesterday, temperatures were seven degrees above average.


The first measurable snow of the winter fell this evening as 0.4" accumulated.  This was the same amount as last winter's first snowfall (which didn't occur until Jan. 17).  Today's high/low of 35°/28° was the same as yesterday's.


First snow



Despite overcast skies, the day's high reached 66° this evening, breaking the previous record from way back in 1879.  This was the warmest reading in December since 2015.   Only 15 Decembers have had warmer readings, and just six have had a reading this warm, or warmer, on a later date. 










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1969 - today's high was 60° and there would be a four month hiatus before the next 60° day occurred.


this was the second time 2021 either tied or broke a record setting occurrence from 1879. the first time was when 2021 tied 1879 for the October with the most total number of daily low temps of 60° or warmer on record (which was thirteen).


December 11’s new record high set in 2021 is an unusual case in that the day was completely overcast and that the warm temperatures were entirely the result of a south wind bringing in warm air (without the sun and with the wind the “feel” temperature was slightly cooler than the actual temperature). Usually it is the strength of the sun, sometimes combined with a south wind, that contributes to very warm weather. If I can remember correctly, record highs for spring and summer days (which are well established in the high 80s or 90s) are primarily the result of a very strong sun. Record highs in the fall and winter are sometimes the combination of sun and a south wind. I remember warm days with maybe a 70-80% cloud cover, but I definitely do not remember any day of notice before where it was unusually warm and completely cloudy.

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