December 2005 Summary

December 2005

Goodland, Kansas Overview

It certainly felt like winter at the start of December, with below normal temperatures and a few light snow events across the area. The first twenty days of the month had an average temperature of 23.9 degrees. This was in line to become the 8th coldest December on record. However, the weather pattern changed and allowed for much warmer temperatures to materialize over the area. Above normal readings persisted during the remainder of December, with an average temperature of 44.4 degrees during the last eleven days of the month. In the end, the average temperature for December was 31 degrees, which was 1.4 degrees above normal. Precipitation during the month totaled 0.12 inches, which was below the normal value of 0.40 inches.

Temperatures and Precipitation

In the graphs above... December 2005 daily values for temperature and precipitation in Goodland, Kansas. (Click image to enlarge).

Record Low Temperatures

Record low readings were realized during the 7th and 8th as a significant arctic air mass traversed over the area. In addition, many areas remained snow covered, aiding in the plummeting readings. Records listed below were either tied or broken.

Goodland, KS
-10 (12/7), -11 (12/8)
Burlington, CO
-12 (12/7), -13 (12/8)
Tribune, KS
-9 (12/7), -15 (12/8)
Yuma, CO
-15 (12/7)
Colby, KS
-13 (12/8)

Record High Temperatures

Record high readings became the story towards the end of the month with a few days surpassing old records. Records listed below were either tied or broken.

Goodland, KS
69 (12/22), 69 (12/26), 64 (12/31)
Hill City, KS
70 (12/26)
Tribune, KS
67 (12/26)
Colby, KS
68 (12/26)
Yuma, CO
64 (12/31)

No White Christmas

Above normal temperatures took the place of a white Christmas in 2005. In fact, it was the 4th warmest Christmas Day on record in Goodland, Kansas.

1980, 1959

Events of Interest

December 16th - 18th
A low pressure system, combined with moist upslope flow, was responsible for widespread snowfall across the region on the 16th and 17th. A weak upper level disturbance skirted over the area on the 18th, providing another round of light snow flurries. Total snow accumulations during the period ranged from 1 to 2 inches. The largest amount was found across portions of Gove County where nearly 2.5 inches of snow was reported.

In the images above... snowfall overspread most of the region by the afternoon hours of December 17th. Unofficial snowfall amounts from December 16th through December 18th are shown. (Click image to enlarge).

December 23rd
A tight pressure gradient was responsible for strong winds across the region during the afternoon hours of December 23rd. In addition, small areas of virga (precipitation not reaching the ground) helped accelerate the winds as a downward momentum was realized due to evaporation aloft. The strongest winds gusted to over 60mph. Some locations experienced dust in the air which reduced visibilities to less than one mile at times.

In the images above... a strong pressure gradient existed across the high plains in between a strong low pressure system and high pressure region. The end result was several reports of strong winds across the area. The highest wind gust reported was in Cheyenne Wells, CO at 69mph. Wind speeds from ASOS, COOP, and KSN Weather Lab Network. (Click image to enlarge).

Happy New Year !!!


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