Publication Date November 8, 2016

Third Warmest October in U.S. Weather Records

United States
Statewide rankings for average temperature during October 2016, as compared to each October since 1895. Darker shades of orange indicate higher rankings for warmth, with 1 denoting the coldest month on record and 122 the warmest. Image: NOAA/NCEI

For the 48 contiguous U.S. states, October came in as the third warmest of the 122 Octobers in data extending back to 1895. This means that three of the six warmest Octobers on record have occurred in the last three years: 2014 (#6), 2015 (#5) and 2016 (#3). Still on top of the list for October warmth are 1963 (#1) and 1947 (#2). 

On a statewide level, this year produced the warmest October on record for New Mexico, and 22 other states had a top-ten warmest October. Only one of the 48 contiguous states ended up cooler than average. That was Oregon, in large part because of the soggy, sun-blocking pattern that prevailed across the Pacific Northwest.