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Weather Talk: January was warmer, drier than average

Despite a frigid start, January ended up being slightly warmer than average and considerably drier and less snowy than average.

For Fargo-Moorhead, the average January high temperature was 19.5 degrees and the average low was 2.9 degrees. This makes an average daily mean temperature of 11.2 degrees, which is two degrees warmer than average.

Daily low temperatures dropped into the minus 20s just once and into the minus 10s eight times. The high temperature was zero or colder on just four days, but was above freezing on 10 days. The warmest temperature of the month was 41 degrees on Jan. 19, and the coldest was minus 23 degrees on Jan. 5.

There was a mere 3.7 inches of snow containing 0.21 inches of moisture, well below the January averages of 11 inches and 0.71 inches, respectively. Snowfall for the season through January is just 15.3 inches, or about half of average.

John Wheeler

John was born in Baton Rouge, LA, and grew up near Birmingham, Alabama. As a teenager, his family moved to Madison, Wisconsin, and later to a small town in northeast Iowa. John traces his early interest in weather to the difference in climate between Alabama and Wisconsin. He is a graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in meteorology. Like any meteorologist, John is intrigued by extremes of weather, especially arctic air outbreaks and winter storms.  John has been known to say he prefers his summers to be hot but in winter, he prefers the cold.  When away from work, John enjoys long-distance running and reading.  John has been a meteorologist at WDAY since May of 1985.

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