First Nebraska Fall Freeze Early in the East, but Late in the West

First Nebraska Fall Freeze Early in the East, but Late in the West

 Average first fall freeze dates

Figure 1.  Long-term average first fall freeze dates across Nebraska.

October 10, 2012

This year fall freeze occurred earlier than normal for most locations in eastern Nebraska; however, western Nebraska, and the Panhandle in particular, experienced its first fall freeze up to 10 days later than normal.

In Lincoln the first fall freeze was September 23 compared to the longer term average of October 12. Scottsbluff  and North Platte experienced their first fall freeze on Sept 26 and Sept 29 respectively, two to six days later than normal for those locations.

Figure 1 shows long-term average first fall freeze dates across the state. Longer term average first fall freeze dates are between the second and fourth week of September in western Nebraska, first week of October in central Nebraska, and second week of October in southeastern Nebraska. This year, first fall freeze occurred approximately two to three weeks earlier for central and southeast Nebraska and approximately one week later than average for western Nebraska.

Tapan Pathak
Climate Variability Extension Educator


Table 1. 2012, average, earliest, and latest first fall frosts (32ËšF) for select Nebraska cities.

Location
 2012 Average Earliest  Latest  Period of Analysis

 Grand Island Oct. 5  Oct. 8  Sept. 12, 1902  Nov. 3, 1944  1896-2012
 Lincoln Sept. 23  Oct. 12  Sept. 11, 1940  Nov. 7, 1956  1896-2012
 Norfolk Sept. 22  Oct. 3  Sept. 9, 1943  Oct. 28, 1973  1896-2012
 North Platte Oct. 1  Sept. 29  Sept. 3, 1974  Nov. 28, 1931  1896-2012
 Omaha Oct. 6  Oct. 17  Sept. 18, 1901  Nov. 13, 1915  1896-2012
 Scottsbluff Oct. 4  Sept. 26  Aug. 25, 1910  Oct. 27, 1963  1896-2012
 Valentine Sept. 22  Sept. 28  Sept. 3, 1974  Oct. 28, 1963  1896-2012

(Data Source: High Plains Regional Climate Center)