2011 In Review

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While our weather is quiet and will remain so for the 1st week of the new year, I thought I’d put together some maps for you highlighting the weather across the country. The blog yesterday covered the extreme weather situations that developed nationwide and also affecting the KC area…but what about the more day to day stuff averaged out for the year as a whole. This will take a national/regional/local perspective.

First lets start out nationally with temperatures compared to average…with all these images you’ll need to click on them to make them larger…

Notice all that red in TX and OK…that’s a sign of some incredible heat that shaped their summer season. For many there, it was the hottest or near hottest summer on record! LA and NM also got into the act with a variety of summertime records set for the intense heat. There were at least 16 cities in TX, OK, and LA that set records for their hottest summer season!

Roughly 18 cities set a record for ALL-time daily high temperatures…for a few days it seemed like Amarillo and Dalhart in the TX Panhandle were doing it on an almost daily basis. Amarillo stopped @ 111° while Dalhart hit 110°. The heat also spread to the east where Newark hit 108°. Even as far north as Resolute, Canada…66° beating records going back to 1951.

20 Cities set ALL-time monthly high temperature records including Tanana, AK with a high of 89° in the month of May! Even the bruised but not dead city of Joplin saw 110° in August for a new monthly record.

August itself was the ALL-time hottest month for 13 cities and July had 11 cities recording their ALL time hottest month on record!

Then there was the grinding heat…heat streaks were the other record type that fell by the way side…whether it was consecutive 90 or 100° days it was impressive! How about Dallas, TX with 70 straight 100°+ days…or Midland, TX with 64 straight. Oklahoma City had 63 straight 100° days. Wichita, KS had 53 straight, as the core of the heat for part of the summer was just festering to the southwest of the KC area…in time though we would get into the act as well!

Thanks to the Weather Channel for having all those stats compiled for me!

On the subject of precipitation…rain or melted snowfall…here is a look at the USA…

Notice the eastern part of the country…there were several cities that set ALL-time wettest year records including Toledo, Metro Detroit, Columbus, Cincinnati, Scranton, PA and Philadelphia. All told about 20 cities broke records and the state of Ohio, as a whole had their wettest year ever. Other cities were their driest including Lubbock, Amarillo, Wichita Falls, Houston and Laredo.

This map shows it better between the haves and have nots in relation to average…

Meanwhile as we zoom in regionally…first temperatures in relation to average…

and now precipitation…

On a more local scale…concerning precipitation in relation to average…

Notice the cores of above average amounts…towards the Ozarks and also along the MO River NW of the metro.

Finally what about KC…here is graph showing the daily highs and lows…

Interesting you average out that mess above and it comes out to about average. We ended up a whooping 1/10 of 1 degree warmer than average! From the folks at the NWS in Pleasant Hill we had 4 months below average, 6 months above average and 2 months near average. The hottest we were @ KCI was 107° and the coldest was -12°. We tied or broke 4 record highs and 1 record low. Compare that number of record highs to what happened in the Southern Plains states and you can see just how close we came to really having it rough.

For 2011 we ended up with 36.92″ of precipitation or about 2″ below average. 3 months were below average, 4 months above and 5 months near average. Total snowfall for the calendar year was 36.1″.

Finally…props to the state of Oklahoma…if you were into weather that place had it all! Here is some information from the Norman WFO Facebook page…

Most Snow in a 24 Hour Period:

27 inches

Spavinaw, OK

Feb 9-10, 2011

Coldest Temperature:

-31 degrees

Nowata, OK

Feb 10, 2011

Largest Hailstone:

6.0 inches

2 miles north of Gotebo

May 23, 2011

Highest Wind Speed  highest official surface wind measurement (not radar-based)

150.8 mph

El Reno

May 24, 2011

Highest Summer Average Temperature:

86.8 degrees

This was also the hottest average summer temperature in history for any state

Warmest August Average Temperature:

87.7 degrees

Oh and one more thing…an EF4 Tornado during the month of November…don’t think that ever happened before!

All of us in the FOX 4 Weather Department hope you have a wonderful New Year!

Joe

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