GOSHEN — When “Baby, it’s cold outside” comes on the radio it serves as a weather report just as much as a staple of any Christmas playlist.
“We’re well below normal temperatures,” said meteorologist Katie Gross in a phone interview Thursday afternoon. Gross works at the National Weather Service weather station in North Webster.
How much colder is it than normal in mid-December? Typically temps crawl to the mid- to upper-30s during the day and fall to the mid-20s at night. Gross said during this recent cold spell, highs have been in the low 20s with lows in single digits. Wind chills drop those numbers even further.
“We’ve got a really strong push of arctic air over Canada,” said Gross of the reason behind frostier-than-usual conditions.
While the bitter cold is here even before the official start of winter, Gross said that doesn’t necessarily mean this winter will be a brutal one.
“It’s hard to say right now,” said Gross. “For the time being, most of December it’s going to be pretty cold. But that doesn’t mean the rest of winter will stay this cold.”
A minus-3 temperature Thursday in South Bend tied a record low for that day with 1962 and 1958. It also ended a streak of 1,035 days where the temperature hadn’t dipped below zero in the South Bend area. That, according to Gross, was the longest such stretch since records started being kept in 1893. Until Thursday, the last time the area was below zero was Dec. 21, 2008
And if the cold wasn’t enough, snow is in the forecast for this weekend.
“We’ve got an upper level disturbance coming through,” Gross said.
What that means is snow is expected in the area sometime early Friday evening and continuing overnight. When all is said and done Goshen is expected to receive between four and five inches of snow.
While that may be an inconvenience, that total has nothing on what parts of the Northeast are expecting. Parts of New Jersey are expected to get up to eight inches of snow while parts of New York and Vermont may get a foot.
Snow even found its way to Israel. Jerusalem experienced its heaviest snowfall in 50 years according to The Washington Post when several inches of the white stuff was dumped there.