Publication Date November 1, 2016

September in November: Mild Autumn Continues for Much of U.S.

United States

The tenacious pattern that’s delayed the first frosts and freezes this autumn as far north as the Upper Midwest remains in place for much of the U.S. as we kick off November. Most of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast has had a few quick shots of cold weather (Baltimore had its first freeze on October 26, a few days earlier than average), but many other parts of the nation have been uncommonly free of autumn’s frosty grasp. Denver has yet to see its first snowflake, making this the first time the city has experienced three snowless Octobers in a row in records going back to 1872. There was plenty of snow in Minneapolis 25 years ago today, when the city was still in the throes of its infamous Halloween Blizzard of 1991...On November 4, 1991, the airport low reached –3°F, the earliest below-zero reading in city history. The contrast with this year couldn’t be much more stark. The Twin Cities have yet to dip below 36°F anytime this fall, and readings there should stay near or above 40°F for at least the next week. The latest freeze on record for Minneapolis occurred on Nov. 7, 1900.

Monday was the warmest Halloween on record for a wide swath of U.S. cities...including Atlanta, GA (86°F); Huntsville, AL (88°F); Amarillo, TX (87°F); and Colorado Springs, CO (80°F). A number of locations across the South and Midwest could set all-time heat records for November on Tuesday and/or Wednesday. For example, Louisville, KY, has a shot on both days at matching or beating its all-time November high of 84°F (set Nov. 17, 1958). Records in Louisville go back to 1872.

This past month has a shot of beating 1963 for the warmest October in U.S. recordkeeping, though it’ll be a few days before we know for sure.