Looking back at November 2013....(12-1-13)

<B>(9:00 am Sunday December 1st)</B> Now that November 2013 is over, it is time to look back at the weather numbers for Syracuse plus a look at the arrival of some arctic air in parts of the West this week.

The calendar has flipped into the final month of 2013 but there were a few numbers to share with you about Syracuse’s weather for November. It was certainly cold in November with an average temperature just about 3 F below normal (-2.9 F to be precise) and that made it the coldest November we’ve seen in in 16 years.  Still, our 37.7 F did not even crack the list of top 5 coldest Novembers since records have been kept at the airport.


Ave. Temperature


34.7 F


35.2 F


35.3 F


35.5 F


35.8 F

It is also interesting that, in spite of the overall cold, we still ended up with 6 days where the high temperature exceeded 60 F.  Chalk it up to the cold days in November being really cold. With the cold last month also came the snow. In Syracuse, we ended up with 14.3” of snow which is almost a half a foot more than the normal amount of 9.5”  It ended up being the snowiest November since 2008.

One of our viewers pointed out about a week ago that our top 4 or 5 snowiest Novembers all ended up with snowy winters as a whole.  At the time I cautioned that we probably weren't going to get to that lofty level with November 2013 snowfall.  However, I did take a look at all the Novembers since 1950 with at least 14” of snow and even those numbers were telling. There were 17 years that fit that category and 11 out of the 17 (65%) had more than 130” of snow.  5 of 17 were below normal in snow and one (1973) was near normal.  Not a slam dunk, but for a large sample that is a solid majority. The last couple of times we’ve had a decent amount of November snow, 2002 (17.2”) and 2008 (16.1”) we ended up with seasonal snowfall near 150”.  This goes against our winter outlook for 2013-14 so we will see.

After this initial bout of winter weather, the start of December looks to be relatively quiet with no major storm systems or lake effect on our horizon through the upcoming week.  That’s not to say there won’t be real winter weather someone in the lower 48 states.  In fact, a major arctic outbreak is poised to drop into the Rockies early this week and stay there into next weekend.  Here are what the ensemble means are saying for the 8 to 10 day period.

Although the coldest air will still be to the west of central New York, it looks like some of the cold will be spilling east toward us which means high temperatures returning to the upper 20s to near 30 degree range arriving late next weekend or early the following week.  We’ll see if we can get some decent lake effect snows when that air arrives.

However, be thankful you are not in the northern Rockies where bonafide midwinter arctic air will arrive for early next week.  I found this graphic posted on the Great Falls National Weather Service page showing the drop in high temperatures.

That’s a nearly 45 degree swing in just two days! All of a sudden, temperatures in the 20s for highs doesn’t seem all that bad.

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