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Daryl Ritchison, WDAY, Published January 24 2013

Weather Talk: First half of winter colder by 10.5 degrees than last year’s

The first half of winter (Dec. 1 through Jan. 15) is behind us, and if it has felt a lot colder than last year, the data definitely support that.

The average temperature during that stretch was 10.5 degrees colder this year than that same period last winter. That is a significant difference, but as a reminder, last winter was the warmest on record, and the first half of the winter of 2011-12 was nearly 4 degrees warmer than any other such period since records began.

Although this season has been much colder than last year, it is still running approximately 4 degrees above average, so unless the next six weeks record well-below-average temperatures, this will be our second winter in a row with an above-average temperature.

Prior to the past two years, we recorded four colder-than-average cold seasons. During the first half of the winter of 2008-09, the average temperatures was 8 degrees below average.

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