Weather Blog

What was December 1990 like?

 So, just how cold was it in 1990?  You've probably heard the references that this will be the worst arctic outbreak since then.

On Dec. 18, arctic air moved into B.C., much like now.  A Convergence Zone formed right over Seattle dumped as much as 12-18" right over the city, with areas just to the north and south getting hardly any .

Arctic air then moved in via blasting winds through the Fraser River Valley, reaching as high as 60-70 mph in gusts. This left the Seattle area in the grips of a frigid air mass for six days.

Here is how those days played out: Dec. 18: High of 41, low of 21, heavy snow
Dec. 19: High: 24; Low: 17
Dec. 20: High: 21, Low: 14
Dec. 21: High: 20, Low: 12
Dec. 22: High: 26, Low 15
Dec. 23: High 30, Low 18
Dec. 24: High 31, Low 24
Dec. 25: High 36, Low 29, light snow (official last "White Christmas" at Sea-Tac)

It was actually close to normal on the 26th and 27th, and then another shot of arctic air arrived:

Dec. 28: High 33, Low 12
Dec. 29: High 22, Low 12
Dec. 30: High 39, Low 20

 

They warmed back to normal on New Years' Eve and that was the end -- they actually warmed into the 50s by Jan. 11.

Here's the same stats for Bellingham: (Thanks to Alan for e-mailng this to me)

18th: High 41, Low 16; flurries
19th: High 16, Low 12
20th: High 17, Low 11
21st: High 21, Low 8
22nd: High 24, Low 12; light snow
23rd: High 30, Low 8
24th: High 30, Low 23; light snow
25th: High 32, Low 25; light snow
28th: High 21, Low 9
29th: High 22, Low 6; light snow
30th: High 38, Low 16; heavy snow