Substantially Wetter and Colder than Normal
October 2006 will be remembered as a damp and cool month in the Indianapolis area. Continuing a trend that began in September, the month was the wettest October since 2001, and the coldest October since 1993. The first flakes of snow were also seen in the Indianapolis area, marking the first snow since March 25 of this spring.
The following is a more detailed summary of weather conditions observed in Indianapolis during October 2006.
October 2006 recorded an average monthly temperature of 52.0 degrees. This value is 2.6 degrees below the normal of 54.6 degrees for the month. This made October 2006 the coldest October in Indianapolis since October 1993 when the average temperature was 51.6 degrees. This year’s October was colder than October of last year by 4.3 degrees.
This year’s October goes down as the 24th coldest October on record.
The month began on a mild note, with three consecutive days in the 80s from the 2nd through the 4th. More mild weather came on the 8th through the 10th with highs in the middle and upper 70s. This was the end of the warm weather for quite some time, as a large scale pattern shift sent things well below normal by the 11th. From the 11th through the 29th of the month, only two days registered temperatures above normal. Warm weather returned by the end of the month with a high of 73 on the 30th.
October 23rd brought a high temperature of 41 degrees, the coldest high temperature during the month of October since October 31, 1993 when the high reached only to 40 degrees.
The first frost and freezes of the season came slightly earlier than normal in Indianapolis. October 12 experienced a low of 31 degrees, compared to a normal of October 17 for the first sub-freezing low temperature at Indianapolis. And then October 25th brought a low temperature of 27 degrees, the first low in the 20s since March 27 of this spring. The normal date for the first low temperature in the 20s in Indianapolis is October 28.
No Temperature Records were broken during the month of October in Indianapolis.
October 2006 barely missed making the list of top 10 wettest Octobers ever in the Indianapolis Area. A monthly total of 5.45 inches was made this the 11th wettest October on record, just missing the 10th place total of 5.47 inches in 1991. October 2006 was the wettest October since 2001 when 7.02 inches of rain fell.
The driest time of the month was the 4th through the 15th with 0.27 inches was reported during that 12 day period. Rainfall came in great bunches during the last half of the month, with 1.42 inches on the 16th and 1.71 inches on the 27th. The total on the 27th broke the daily record of 1.63 inches set in 1919.
Snowfall was officially reported at the Indianapolis airport on October 27th, but this was only a trace, with no accumulation measured. The normal first date of snowfall in the area is November 8th. This is the first time a trace of snowfall in October has been reported at Indianapolis since 2001.
FALL SUMMARY TO DATE
So far, the fall of 2006 has been much colder and wetter than normal. With October and September both well below normal for temperatures, this fall so far stands as the 16th coldest on record, tied with the fall of 1896. To date, 2006 has been the coldest fall season since 1993.
This fall so far has also been the 18th wettest on record. The 8.98 inches that has fallen so far is the most since 2001.
The temperature outlook for November shows a slightly enhanced likelihood of warmer than normal temperatures for the month. Precipitation outlooks for the month suggest an equal chance of above, below, or near normal precipitation values.
Data Prepared by Logan Johnson, Climate Services Focal Point
Temperature and Precipitation Records Cover the Period 1871-2006 in the Indianapolis Area.
Snowfall Records Cover the period 1884-2006 in the Indianapolis Area.
Normals refer to reference period 1971-2000. Return to News Archive