A Warm First Half of Winter: January 2007 Climate Summary

Dr. David A. Robinson
New Jersey State Climatologist
Center for Environmental Prediction, Cook College/NJAES, Rutgers University

February 4, 2007
Updated: February 15

While the door to arctic cold opened at the end of January and remains ajar, the winter to date has been exceptionally mild in the Garden State. The end of January cold brought mean monthly temperatures down from a record early month pace. However, the preliminary state wide January average of 37.0° is 6.4° above normal, and ranks 11th warmest since 1895 (January 2006 was 6th warmest). One of the warmest January days on record occurred on the 6th, when afternoon temperatures reached the upper 60s and low 70s in most locales.

Looking back at the last several months, both the November 2006-January 2007 and December 2006-January 2007 intervals rank as the second warmest on record. Each trails the exceptionally warm winter of 1931-32, in large part due to the 42.2° January 1932 mean being the warmest on record. If you recall from recent monthly reports, both November and December 2006 were the warmest on record.

As a result of several early month rain events (1st and 7th-8th), January precipitation preliminarily totaled 3.68”, just 0.26” below normal. Recent weeks have brought meager precipitation, but for snow lovers, at least some has fallen in frozen form. The first measurable (at least 0.1”) snow of the season fell in New Brunswick on the 19th. This was the 5th latest date for such an event since station records began in 1893. To date, while a few inches of snow have fallen at various locations in scattered events (reports for events where at least one location received 2 or more inches of the white stuff can be found here), a major storm has not visited NJ. The coming weeks will tell whether we will be challenging seasonal records for snow futility. But as we learned last February 11-12, this can change in a matter of snowy hours.

Past Climate Summaries