Third Warmest Winter for Illinois

Winter – Temperature

It should be no surprise that this winter was one of the mildest on record for Illinois. “Winter” refers to the three key months of December, January, and February. This year the average winter temperature was 34.2 degrees, 5.2 degrees above normal, and the third warmest winter on record. Here are the top four warmest winters. As you can see, we had a two-way tie for second place.

  • First place, the winter of 1931-32 at 37.1 degrees;
  • Second place, a tie between 1997-98 and 2001-02 at 34.5 degrees;
  • Third place, this winter at 34.2 degrees.

Not only was it warm in terms of the average temperatures, but this winter lacked the really cold weather. Only a few place had temperatures drop below zero. The coldest reading for the winter was a mere -6 degrees at both Galena and Elizabeth in the far northwestern corner of the state.

Winter – Precipitation

The statewide average precipitation for winter was 6.73 inches, just 0.24 inches below normal. Much of that precipitation fell as rain and not snow. Snowfall totals were 50 to 75 percent of normal across much of northern Illinois and 25 to 50 percent of normal in central and southern Illinois. The snowiest spot in the state through the end of February was Woodstock with 27.9 inches, followed closely by Stockton with 27.6 inches and Mt. Carroll with 27.3 inches.

February

The statewide average temperature for February was 35.1 degrees, 4.6 degrees above average. The statewide average precipitation was 1.55 inches, 0.4 inches below normal. Snowfall ranged from less than an inch in southern Illinois to 3 inches in central Illinois. It was a little snowier in the northern third of the state with amounts ranging from 3 to 8 inches.

The statewide records go back to 1895.

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