The Last Gasps of Winter: The Frustration of March Cold Snaps
Today in New York Weather History: February 18

Today in New York Weather History: February 17


1893 (Friday)

Starting today and continuing overnight a snowstorm dumped 9.1" (with much of it falling today).  This was the biggest snowfall of the winter (in total there were five snowfalls of four inches or more).  Today's high/low of of 28°/17° would be repeated tomorrow.


1896 (Monday)

With a high/low of 7°/-5°, today was not only the coldest day this winter but of one of the coldest of any winter.  It moved ahead of the previous coldest day of this winter, Jan. 6, which had a high/low of 12/-2°.


1922 (Friday)

There were ten days with lows colder than 10° this winter, but today was the only one with a reading that was below zero (-2°).  This tied Feb. 17, 1896 as the second latest date for a sub-zero reading (latest was in the winter of 1873 when a low of -4° was reported on 2/24.)




1958 (Monday)

It was a bitterly cold day that saw temperatures stuck in the single digits largely due to mostly overcast skies.  The high was 10°, which occurred shortly after midnight; the day's low of 6° was reached 24 hours later, shortly before midnight.  This was the ninth day in a row with high temperatures colder than 30°.


1971 (Wednesday)

Although light rain that fell in the middle of the afternoon amounted to just 0.05", it was the first measurable precipitation to fall on this date in fifteen years.


1973 (Saturday)

Today's high/low of 22°/7° made this the coldest day of the year.


1978 (Friday)

This was the only day this month with an above average mean temperature (high/low of 40°/33°, three degrees above average).


1990 (Saturday)

The day's temperature nosedived from 58° to 23°.


1991 (Sunday)

Today was the 20th day in a row in which no high temperature was duplicated.  During these days the highs ranged from 27° (yesterday) to 70° (on 2/5).


2003 (Monday)

After last night's initial snowfall of 3.5", the brunt of the Presidents' Day blizzard kicked in this morning, dumping an additional 16.3", making this New York's fourth biggest snowfall on record.  (Since then four snowstorms during the winters of 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2016 have surpassed it.)  Wind gusts of 40-50 mph  created snow drifts of three to five feet.  The day's high/low was just 26°/14°.  This storm was more fierce than another President's Day snowstorm, in 1979, which dumped 12.7" on the City.  




2013 (Sunday)

After a pleasant week following the snowstorm of Feb. 8-9 (11.4" fell), a slap of winter returned with howling winds (40-50 mph gusts) and temperatures that fell through the 20s, to 18° by midnight (wind chills were close to 0°).  Over the past four weeks half of the days had highs of 32° or colder.  The one consolation today was the clear skies, but snow lovers would beg to differ as an intense storm (the reason for the high winds) that dropped more than six inches of snow over Massachusetts was too far off the coast to produce snow in the City.




2015 (Tuesday)

An overnight snowfall put down 3.3" by the time it ended around 10:00 this morning.  Because the air was so cold and dry just 0.14" of liquid produced considerably more snow than would usually be the case.  The day's high was 27°, making it the fifth day in a row with a high of 32° or colder.


2018 (Saturday)

Despite the temperature going no lower than 33°, a heavy, wet snow accumulated 4.4" between 5 PM and midnight.  This came at the end of a week that had three days with highs of 62° and one with a high of 58° (yesterday).  (Click here to read an analysis of other snowfalls of four inches or more that have occurred the day after the high was 50° or warmer.)


2022 (Thursday)

Today had the year’s first reading in the 60s.  At 68° it was the warmest reading in three months (since 11/18), and a record for the date.  The last time a reading this mild happened in February was in 2018, when the mercury soared to 78° on 2/21 (the warmest temperature ever reported in February).  Today’s spring-like reading, 25 degrees above average, came just two days after a low of 16°.  (There was also a low of 16° on 2/14,  two days after a high of 59°.)


Graph - big swings in feb temps

2024 (Saturday)

Today's high of 36° was the coldest daily high of the month - the mildest reading on record to be the coldest high in February.  The average coldest high in February is in the mid-20s.  (In the years before 1930, it was in the upper teens.)



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the only recollection I have from the storm on President's Day is when I was watching a documentary called Supersize Me. just over an hour in to the film, a voice over of a NY1 minute news person can be heard saying "if you're inside, stay there, the blizzard of 2003 isn't over yet". the movie was shot in '03 but was released in DVD and theaters one year later.


2022 - today’s low of 49° was the warmest low temperature that ever happened on this date. the old record was 46° in 1981 and 2011. this joined the winters of 1966 and 2002 as the only three where December, January and February all had at least one day with a low of 49° or warmer.

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