January 2013 Month in Review: Fog, cold, fog, clouds, and fog

I’m a little late in dishing the stats out this month, but you’ll find it’s well worth the wait! OK, maybe January wasn’t that exciting, but we did achieve some pretty cold numbers. How cold, you ask? Let’s bring out the stats!

january weather stats

Just one brief look at this chart will tell you everything you need to know about this month. Not only were our nighttime temperatures unseasonably cold for an extended period of time, but our high temperatures often hovered above or just beneath the average low temperature for January! Out of this month’s 31 days, nearly half of them were spent in the 30s with 4 nights in the teens. Several other nights hovered close to the 20 degree mark, but couldn’t make the commitment to dip a little further.


Average high temperature: 42.9°

Average Low Temperature: 33.5°

Actual high temperature average (2013): 40.9°; 2° below normal

Actual low temperature average (2013): 30.8°; 2.7° below normal

Average overall temperature: 38.2°

Actual overall temperature: 35.8°; 2.4° below normal


I suppose to be fair, a lot of this cold air was the result of several days of inversions. Usually when we have a big ridge of high pressure in the winter, there is so much moisture already on the ground and in the air that low clouds and fog form, leaving the higher elevations mild and dry.

1-19-2013 fog

Indeed, we never had any arctic air intrusions, just a lot of what I like to call “fake cold”.

So you can imagine if we had a lot of inversion activity we didn’t have a whole lot of rain. To be specific, we ended the month with only 3.59” of rain in the gauge, which is puny when standing against the monthly average of 8.89”.

At least the mountains benefited, right? For them, this month featured the perfect combo of mild, sunny days and cold, snowy days. I think it’d be fair to say the mountains have fared exceptionally well this winter despite the doom and gloom forecasts of an always destructive El Nino event.

Aside from the fog and cold conditions of January, there really wasn’t much else to report. Heavy rain, wind, and wet snow at the beginning of the month made it seem like we’d be in for an active weather period, but it was all a show.

And what about February? Any exciting news? No, not really. At least the sun’s influence is getting stronger this time of year, so such thick inversions will be less likely this month. The short term looks classically showery and cool with a few sun breaks from time to time. If you’re looking for some significantly warmer weather, Phil the Groundhog assures us it’s in the not-too-distant future 🙂

Have a great evening,

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

E-mail: forecastingkitsap@live.com