Winter is 8th warmest on record

Body: 

With the start of meteorological spring last Tuesday, the meteorological winter is now in the books, and it will be remembered as a warm one.

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport recorded an average temperature of 24.2 degrees in December through February, making it the eighth warmest meteorological winter on record.

December — with an average temperature of 30.2 degrees that made it the third warmest in records going back to 1872 — was followed by a January that at 17.6 degrees was just a couple of degrees above average. February finished at 24.9 degrees, or 4 degrees above average.

A lack of days at or below zero helped keep the average high. The airport’s thermometer didn’t go negative until Jan. 9. That was followed by a couple of weeks of the coldest air of the season, including the three-month low of 14 below on Jan. 17.

The top two warmest meteorological winters on record by average temperature were 29.9 degrees in 18-77-1878 and 26.8 in 2001-2002.

(Story courtesy of St. Paul Pioneer Press)