One month after an extended cold wave of eleven days (Dec. 27-Jan. 6), another one of identical length began. Ten of the days had highs of 32° or colder. The average high/low during these days was 25°/11°, twelve degrees colder than average. The coldest reading during this period would be 2° on Feb. 16, and two snowfalls produced five inches of snow.
New York's coldest reading of all-time, 15° below zero, was reported today (41 degrees below average). And with a breeze of 10-15 mph during the morning, the wind chill was between -35° and -40°. The mercury was at 10° below zero or colder for eight consecutive hours (and it was 0° or colder for 16 consecutive hours beginning at 9 PM the previous night). By 5 PM the temperature had "recovered" to 8° above zero. Today's reading usurped the previous all-time low of -13° from Dec. 30, 1917.
With a high of 46°, this was the first day in five weeks (since Jan. 4) to have a high in the 40s. During these five weeks, the average high/low was 32°/18°, seven degrees colder than average. This streak of 45 days was the longest on record, besting 1886's streak of 44 days, which ended on the same day as 1945's, but began one day later.
A snowstorm that lasted for 26 hours dumped 15.3" of snow (14.0" today, 1.3" in the wee hours of 2/10). Winds that gusted between 25-30 mph created snowdrifts of two to three feet. This storm became known as the "Lindsay Snowstorm" after streets in the outer boroughs went unplowed for days, neglect that nearly toppled mayor John Lindsay in his re-election bid later in the year. Central Park would have snow cover from this storm for the rest of the month.
With a high/low of 36°/21°, today marked the end of one of New York's most extended periods of very cold weather. Between Dec. 21 and today, a period of 51 days, every day but three was colder than average. This stretch of days was nearly nine degrees colder than average. Additionally, this was the 51st day in a row with a low temperature of 32° or colder, the longest such streak this century (only the winters of 1875 and 1881 had longer streaks - 56 days each).
Today's low temperature was 9°, the first of six consecutive days with a temperature in the single digits - tied for the second longest such streak on record (there was a streak of eight days during the winter of 1918 and six days in the winter of 1875).
After 6.3" of snow fell last night, an additional 5.1" fell after midnight today, ending shortly before daybreak. With a total of 11.4", this was the 15th snowstorm since 1970 with an accumulation greater than 10 inches. Despite this significant accumulation, the City escaped the full fury of the blizzard that raged further east, where snowfall totals greater than two feet were the norm in Suffolk County and much of New England.
The day after a record high of 62°, winter returned with unprecedented vengeance as 9.4" of heavy snow fell during the morning (mostly between 6 AM and noon); temperatures were in the upper 20s. Snow fell at a rate of an inch or more/hour, reducing visibility to less than 1/4 mile for six consecutive hours. By midnight the temperature had fallen to the upper teens. Snowfall was in the 12"-15" range over most of Long Island, the Hudson Valley and Connecticut. This drastic change in conditions exceeded that of Feb. 1-2, 2014 when eight inches of snow fell the day after a high of 56°.