From record heat to freezing temperatures, this month had it all

Weather Blog

Did you know Rochester has already seen 10 days (including today) at or above 60 degrees this month? While it’s not uncommon for us to see these kinds of temperatures in November, this certainly adds to the list of us inching closer to that near record territory in terms of how many of these days we see in total.

For perspective, the average number of days to see 60 degrees or above in November is 5, and we’ve already surpassed that by two fold.

The highest number of 60 degree days seen in November is 15 back in 1975. While it’s unlikely we see too many more 60s as we approach the end of the month, it’s still worth noting that this year is now included in the list of others for top 5 Novembers seeing temperatures like this. Now let’s back track just a bit…

November in general is a month often filled with big swings of up and down weather patterns, and 2020 sure has given us that. From some of our first traces of snow to record heat, back to freezing, throw in a few severe thunderstorms, and then back near 70 degrees in some spots, this November has surely been an interesting one for Western New York. There have also been plenty of records broken that are worth noting. With all that in mind, let’s take a look at all the noteworthy events we’ve seen this month:

Early November Snow

The first 3 days of November greeted us with some of our first flakes of the season. From November 1st to November 3rd Rochester roughly measured a total of 0.2″. Nothing too overly exciting, or even enough to cause a wide range of headaches on the roads, but it sure did bring us a false first impression of what the rest of the month would hold.

On average Rochester sees its first measurable snow (0.1″ or more) by November 8th, so we were slightly ahead of the game there. By November 20th, Rochester will typically sees its first inch of snow on average, so we’re now officially due for our 1st inch. *Hint Hint* Based on the latest forecast trends, we may not be too far off from getting that within the next couple days.

Record November Heat

Even though it’s only been a short while since we’ve seen snowflakes fly, you’re guaranteed to remember this next notable November event. Remember that stretch within our first and second week of November that felt more like the middle of September?

For 8 consecutive days Rochester went from temperatures in the 40s and 50s, to temperatures in the 60s and 70s! Not only were we exceptionally mild, but we managed to break several records; enough that you can fit on almost an entire hand. Here’s a list of all the records we broke during this period:

  1. Monday hit 77°, breaking the record of 74° set in 1999.
  2. Tuesday hit 78°, breaking the record of 72° set in 1975.
  3. Tuesday’s 70°+ high makes it the sixth day of hitting that mark this November, breaking the previous record of five in 1931.
  4. It also makes for a five day 70° streak, the longest ever, beating four days set in 2015.

MORE |Rochester breaks three heat records in one day

High Winds and Severe Storms

On November 15th the Weather Team was prepared for strong, damaging winds to affect the region as a strong low pressure system made its way across the Great Lakes where it continued to strengthen as it drew closer. What was first just a threat for high winds due to a strengthening pressure gradient, soon became a threat for a strong line of storms that also included heavy rain, wind, and lightning, which was associated with a partnering cold front to come later on in the day.

We went from high wind warnings, to severe thunderstorm watches issued for nearly the entire Western NY region, to severe thunderstorm warnings that overspread most of the viewing area from one point to another. There were several thousand power outages reported with winds gusting close to 70 mph at times, heavy downpours, and even some lightning. If anything, it was a great example of just how dynamic and ever changing the weather can be.

Where to now?

As of November 20th we have 10 days left in the month, and even though temperatures will most likely fall back into the 40s and 50s in the coming days, there’s always room for brief warm ups.

As it stands now, November of 2020 is still within the top 10 warmest November’s on record with an average monthly temperature of 46.9°. Of course, this will continue to change in the coming days. Even though temperatures look to be trending above average in the short term pattern, we’ll have to see where we land by the end of it all.

Photo courtesy: pivotal weather

Back to that note from earlier. Could we finally see our first inch of snow just 2 days after the average date of doing so? Check out the latest forecast information HERE for all the details as they come.

~Meteorologist Christine Gregory

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