Much, but Not All, of Nebraska Experiences Hard Freeze

Much, but Not All, of Nebraska Experiences Hard Freeze October 14, 2016

The hard freeze felt across much of east central and northeast Nebraska the morning of Oct. 13 marks the second major freeze event of the month. The first, on Oct. 6, primarily impacted western Nebraska. Between these two events, 38 of the 56 listed locations (Table 1) reported minimum temperatures of 28ºF or lower which quantifies as a hard freeze. 

Fifteen locations have received a hard freeze, but experienced frost conditions as lows dropped into the 29-32°F range. Even though these Mesonet stations failed to reach 28°F or lower, it is likely that pockets of hard freeze conditions developed near these locations, especially in areas susceptible to cold air drainage (river valleys and the bottom of large hills). The only area of the state not experiencing widespread frost and freeze conditions was southeast Nebraska south and east of Lincoln.

It appears that the next best chance for freezing temperatures will be late next week (Oct. 20-22) as another system ejects out of the Pacific Northwest and strengthens as it passes east of the central Plains region. It is projected to deepen east of Nebraska, which will allow a Canadian air mass to surge southward on the backside of the northeastward moving surface low. If the current storm track verifies, hard freeze conditions will likely impact eastern Nebraska north of I-80, with respectable odds of experiencing frost conditions across areas that have escaped this most recent event.

Table 1. Temperatures from Sept. 29 to Oct. 12, including average, normal, departure from normal, and low during the period.
Ave.Norm.Dep.Low
AINSWORTH 41.1 38.1 3.0 30
ALLIANCE WEST 35.8 36.0 -0.3 23
BARTA 38.6 38.2 0.4 27
GOEHNER 2S 42.5 42.9 -0.4 28
BEATRICE 43.7 43.6 0.2 31
BINFIELD 41.7 M M 30
BRULE NORTH TABLE 39.1 37.5 1.6 28
BRUNSWICK 40.8 39.9 0.9 28
CEDAR POINT 41.3 37.8 3.5 32
CENTRALCITY 40.8 M M 26
CHALK ROCK 42.7 40.2 2.5 30
CHAMBERS 4S 40.5 M M 29
CHAMPION 36.4 38.4 -2.0 24
COZAD 37.9 39.3 -1.4 27
CURTIS (UNSTA) 39.5 39.1 0.4 26
DICKENS 39.7 38.6 1.0 30
ELGIN 42.1 39.8 2.3 28
FIRTH 44.5 43.6 0.9 33
FOX 41.7 M M 29
GORDON 38.4 36.3 2.1 28
GOTHENBURG 40.3 39.3 1.1 27
GRAND ISLAND 41.7 41.0 0.7 27
GRANT 1E 36.5 M M 27
GUDMUNDSEN RANCH 37.6 37.5 0.2 22
HALSEY 40.1 37.9 2.2 28
HARRISON 4NW 37.6 M M 21
HIGGINS RANCH 41.7 38.5 3.2 31
HOLDREGE 40.6 40.5 0.1 27
INDIAN CAVE ST PARK 48.3 43.6 4.7 37
KEARNEY 41.9 41.1 0.9 31
LEXINGTON 3S 40.1 M M 26
LINCOLN (IANR) 44.7 43.4 1.3 32
MCCOOK 41.4 38.7 2.7 28
MEAD 41.3 42.4 -1.2 28
MERNA 38.3 38.7 -0.4 26
MERRITT 39.5 37.5 2.0 24
MINDEN 39.8 41.2 -1.5 27
MITCHELL FARMS 38.5 35.6 2.9 24
MONROE 43.3 41.3 2.0 32
NEBRASKA CITY 47.2 43.3 4.0 36
NEWPORT 40.7 38.5 2.2 29
CONCORD 41.6 40.7 0.9 28
NORTH PLATTE 39.6 38.5 1.2 29
OAKLAND 42.7 41.7 1.1 27
O'NEILL 40.1 38.8 1.3 29
ORD 37.3 40.3 -3.0 25
RED CLOUD 42.9 41.8 1.1 28
SCOTTSBLUFF 36.1 36.4 -0.3 23
SHELTON 41.5 41.3 0.2 29
SIDNEY 37.9 36.8 1.1 28
CLAY CENTER (SCAL) 42.5 41.4 1.1 28
SPARKS 40.4 38.0 2.5 28
SMITHFIELD 41.0 40.2 0.7 28
WEST POINT 42.6 42.1 0.5 28
M: Missing value
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