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Mild start to January, but the cold is on the way

January outlook
Posted: 12:41 PM, Jan 07, 2020
Updated: 2020-01-07 13:41:55-05

January, and consequently 2020, has been off to a very mild start. Afternoon highs in Omaha have reached the 40s every day so far and the streak continues for the next several before the arrival of a cold front late Thursday.

For those keeping track at home, the Climate Prediction Center shows equal chances both above/below average temperatures and for wetter/drier conditions. While that’s not particularly helpful for the overall month, we can break it down into smaller time frames to see what is in store for us.

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With highs in the 40s, we’ve been nearly 10 degrees above average each day. Our average high for January is 34 degrees with an average low of 14. It has been a dry start, too, with nothing more than a trace measured out at Eppley. For reference, the average rain for Omaha during January is 0.72 inches and 6.1 inches of snow. Granted, there’s still plenty of time left in the month to cool down and accumulate some snow.

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In fact, colder air and some snow chances will be arriving before we know it. Colder air returns by Friday, which will drop highs into the 30s, followed by 20s on Saturday and then more 30s for Sunday and Monday. There are still several questionable factors for those snow chances, so it’s a bit too early to tell how it will all play out, but the cold air is a guarantee.

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There will be another cold front early next week to bring in some of the coldest air of winter season so far. As temperatures drop, it’s not out of the question that we could see highs in low 20s and even teens next week.

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It looks like the colder than average temperatures will stick around for a while, too, based off of the CPC’s latest 8-14 day outlook going through the 20th. So, it looks like “real” winter is on the way!

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