“It was a relatively quiet January, with periods of cold and snowy weather, but no strong storm systems like last year,” said the January Climatology Report from the National Weather Service Forecast Office in North Webster, Indiana (KIWX). The average monthly temperature was below normal, but precipitation was near normal, and snowfall for the month was slightly above normal. The real fireworks did not show up until the night of January 31 and February 1.
The KIWX report continued, “January, 2015 began with near normal temperatures, but an Arctic front moved into the area around the fourth”. This sent temperatures plummeting, with nine out of the next ten days experiencing well below normal temperatures. Six of these days had low temperatures at zero or colder. Measurable precipitation occurred on eight days between January 3 and 12, and measurable snowfall was recorded on nine out of eleven days between January 4 and 14. The greatest daily snowfall of the month fell on the sixth, with 2.5 inches being measured at the KFWA Observation Station in Fort Wayne. “The second half of January was actually warmer than normal,” the KIWX report added, “…with each day from the 16th to the 25th having average temperatures above the norm. Precipitation and snowfall was below normal during this stretch until the 25th.
The average monthly temperature was 21.6 degrees, which was 3.3 degrees below normal. This ranked as the 31st coldest January on record. The warmest temperature was 42 on the 17th and the coldest was 8 below zero on the eighth, which was in the midst of the aforementioned six days with low temperatures of zero or colder.
Precipitation totals came out to 2.23 inches, which was 0.03 inches below normal. This ranked as the 47th wettest January on record. Snowfall for the month was 12.7 inches…2.6 inches above normal. This ranked as the 21st snowiest January on record, but nothing even remotely close to the numbers of last year.
On that subject, a record total of 19.2 inches of snow fell in February of 2014. When the readings were taken on the morning of February 2, 2015, for what had fallen the previous day, Wauseon had 14 inches, and Angola 11.7 inches. Western Williams County got anywhere from 7 to 9 inches, while to the east and Fulton County, their totals ranged from 10 inches to a foot or more. The Climate Prediction Center is calling for normal temperatures and precipitation levels for the month of February. Those figures come down to 28.3 degrees normal mean average temperature, 2.4 inches of precipitation, and 7.7 inches of snow
Well…after the first day of the month, we already know that the snow estimation is off. We’ve got the rest of February to see how the other two prognostications hold up.
Timothy Kays can be reached at