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December 2015 Weather Recap - El Niño on Steroids
Latest Dates for First 32-Degree High Temperature

Longest Streaks of Above Average Temperatures

Clipart_sweating_thermometer

 

What helped December 2015 become the warmest on record was the lack of any cold outbreaks whatsoever.  The coldest temperature was 34°, the first time the month of December reported no temperature of 32° or colder.  This lack of cold weather resulted in above average mean temperatures every day of the month - a first for any month.  This streak of above-average temperatures continued through Jan. 3.  At 34 days it's the longest on record, breaking the former record by two days.  Additionally, this streak was 12.5 degrees above average, the largest departure of any streak of 20 days or more, all of which are listed below.  (Please note that, unlike other weather statistics, the tracking of each day's "Departure from Average" only goes back to 1953.) 

 

# of Days     Date Range

Degrees

Above Average

   

 

34

32

      30 

27

 25 

25

24

22

22

22

22

21

21

21

21

21

20

20

20

 

   

Dec 1, 2015 - Jan 3, 2016

Dec 10, 2006 - Jan 10, 2007

Jan 15 - Feb 13, 1998

Aug 17 - Sept 12, 1983

Nov 23 - Dec 17, 1998

Mar 13 - Apr 6, 1953

July 13 - Aug 5, 1995

Sept 20 - Oct 11, 2007

Feb 17 - Mar 10, 1998

Aug 24 - Sept 14, 1961

Feb 14 - Mar 7, 1961

June 28 - July 18, 2012

Dec 3 - 23, 1999

Jan 15 - Feb 4, 1990

July 29 - Aug 18, 1988

Sept 21 - Oct 11, 1959

Jan 23 - Feb 11, 2012

Nov 20 - Dec 9, 2011

Mar 24 - Apr 12, 1981

       12.5°

       11.7°

         6.9°

         6.4°

         9.9°

         6.6°

         5.8°

         8.7°

         7.7°

         8.7°

       10.4°

         5.7°

         6.9°

       11.5°

         7.2°

         9.5°

         8.7°

         8.4°

         9.4°

   
             
             
             
             
             
             
             
 

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Biebs

I was looking at data sets by using a 10 year and 30 year trailing averages by month (rather than specific daily temperature averages).

Dec 2015 was the warmest against 10 year trailing average (+10.6 degrees)
Dec 2015 was the warmest against 30 year trailing average (+12.2 degrees)
Dec 2015 was the warmest against all-time average (1877 - Present) (+14.6 degrees)

In absolute terms, there were 3 months that had a larger absolute difference against 10 year trailing average (Dec 1918 (-10.64 degrees), Feb 1934 (-13.1 degrees), Dec 1989 (-10.8 degrees)

It's also only the 2nd December ever with more 50 degree days (11) then below freezing days (0). The only other time was 1998 (8/7)
Also (my personal favorite), the difference between warmest December (50.8) and 2nd warmest December (12/2001 44.1) is larger than the gap for warmest and 20th warmest for every other month of the year.

The former biggest gap between warmest and 2nd warmest month was January (1/1932 was 1.8 degrees warmer than 1/1950)

KH

How about this one, for the unbelievable warmth of December 2015?
The average mean temp of 50.8 in December 2015 would put it in third place for the warmest March averages.
March mean records:
51.1 in 1945
50.9 in 2012
49.6 in 1946
So December 2015 would fit in right at third place. I was noticing during December 2015 that we stood a chance of making first or second place in the March list, but unfortunately the last four days of 12/2015 we had means of 40,40,45 and 43, which took our monthly average down somewhat.
Up to and including 12/27/2015, the December monthly mean was 52.07 which means we actually were "warmer" than the all-time warmest March of 1945. Darn!!!!

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