Winter 2013-14: The 34th Coldest for Contiguous U.S.

The winter of 2013-14 has been long and cold for many parts of the United States. For the nation as a whole, it was our coldest winter since 2009-10, but not a record breaker.

According to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center, this meteorological winter (Dec-Feb) was the 34th coldest on record for the contiguous U.S.  With an average temperature of 31.3°F, the country was 1°F below its long-term norm.

While the Northeast and Midwest experienced extended bouts of frigid temperatures and abundant snow, the West was unusually warm and dry.  This difference, produced by a highly amplified jet stream, balanced out the national average.  Nonetheless, it is interesting to note that even though this winter was among the top ten coldest for a few mid-western states, none posted an all time record cold season.  California, by contrast, experienced its warmest winter on record.

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About Melissa Fleming

Melissa Fleming is an environmental communicator and visual artist working at the intersection of art and science. She is passionate about exploring, learning, and sharing information about the natural world. She has presented her interdisciplinary work in a variety of mediums at venues and conferences around the world.