Cool and Dry
November 2008 brought its share of ups and downs for weather in Central Indiana. Temperatures were on a roller coaster for much of the month, with conditions becoming either very warm or cold, sometimes by 10 or 15 degrees above or below normal. The dry trend that began in August continued for its fourth consecutive month. Despite the wide variability in temperatures this month, things did end up cooler than normal.
The following is a summary of everything that was weather in Indianapolis during the month of November, 2008.
November 2008 finished with an average monthly temperature of 41.6 degrees. This was below normal by 1.3 degrees. This made it the coolest November since 2002, and the first November since then to record a cooler than average monthly temperature.
Many days finished well above or well below normal this month. The first six days of the month saw readings of between 12 and 14 degrees above normal. On the other extreme, there were four days with temperatures of 10 to 15 degrees below normal, including the 21st and 22nd which saw readings of 15 degrees below normal on both days. Overall, 10 days in November 2007 reported temperatures above normal. 18 days during the month saw below normal temperatures, and 2 days were right at the normal for the day.
Our streak of unusual warmth to kick off November, although now just a distant memory, was record tying. The first six days of the month were all 70 degrees or higher, which tied the record for most days in the month of November that were in the 70s.
The first low in the teens at Indianapolis came this year on the 21st of November. This is about a week earlier than our normal first date, which is the 29th of November.
November 2008 was tied for the 52nd coldest on record with 1919 and 1935. The coldest on record came in 1880 with a temperature of 31.1 degrees, while the warmest was in 1931 with an average of 51.7 degrees.
November 2008 continued the dry streak that began in Indianapolis back in August as this was the fourth month in a row with drier than normal conditions. The month finished up with 1.97 inches, which is below normal by 1.64 inches. It was still wetter than last year’s November, which saw only 1.85 inches of precipitation.
Most of this month’s rainfall came on the 11th through 15th, when 1.32 inches fell at the Indianapolis International Airport. The period of the 16th through the 29th was very dry, as just 0.22 inches came in that entire stretch. The final day of the month added an additional 0.27 inches of precipitation to the total. Had it not been for the last day of the month, November would have finished in the top 25 driest on record.
This did end up being the 34th driest November on record. The driest on record was back in 1904 with just 0.11 inches of precipitation falling. The wettest on record came in 1881 with a 9.35 inch total for the month.
This November brought the first measurable snowfall of the season to Indianapolis on the 30th of the month. 0.5 inches was measured at the International Airport. This was the fifth day in the month where snow fell, with the other four just being trace amounts. The normal snowfall in November is 1.3 inches. However, it has been a long time since November brought normal snowfall to Indianapolis. The last time November snowfall was above normal was back in 1997. In fact, this year was the first November since 2005 to bring any measurable snow at all.
The average date of the first measurable snowfall at Indianapolis is on November 20th, so this year was just a little later than normal. The snowiest November on record was way back in 1932 when 9.8 inches of snow fell.
November 2008 saw a total of 12 days with fog observed, and 0 days with thunder. The peak wind gust for the month was 37 mph from the southwest on the 7th of November.
The official outlook for the month of December calls for an enhanced likelihood of colder than normal temperatures and equal chances of above, below, or normal precipitation.
Data Prepared by Logan Johnson, Climate Services Focal Point with assistance from NWS Forecast Team
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Temperature and Precipitation Records Cover 1871-2007 in the Indianapolis Area.
Snowfall Records Cover the period 1884-2007 in the Indianapolis Area.
Normals refer to reference period 1971-2000.Return to News Archive