Stream in the Highlands

December 2010

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North Carolina Climate, the monthly newsletter of the State Climate Office of NC, covers a monthly climate summary for November with impacts to agriculture and water resources, a Christmas climatology for various cities across the state, as well as information on La Nina and its effects on the winter season.
PDF version available for printing.

 

Climate Summary

Departures from Normal
Temperature and Precipitation by climate division
Departures from Normal for November 2010 - based on preliminary data.

November 2010 in North Carolina was fairly calm, at least from a climate perspective. With the exception of storms across western NC during the last day of the month, most of November was quiet, a bit cool, and a bit dry. This was most pronounced in central and eastern NC, where rainfall has been relatively infrequent since September.

A strong cold front moved through NC on November 30 and brought warnings to areas of western NC. Flooding was reported in Hendersonville, Brevard, and Marion. Severe thunderstorm warnings due to damaging winds were issued by National Weather Service late on November 30 and the overnight hours of December 1. Damage from high winds was reported along the I-85 corridor between the Charlotte and Triad metropolitan areas.

MPE Precipitation
Precipitation for November 2010
Based on estimates from NWS Radar
Data courtesy NWS/NCEP

MPE Precipitation Percent of Normal
Precipitation for November 2010: Percent of Normal
Based on estimates from NWS Radar
Data courtesy NWS/NCEP

 

Impacts to Agriculture and Water Resources

The quiet, dry month of November allowed harvesting to progress quickly. Top soil moisture levels for most of the state remain adequate for winter grains.

Rainfall is quickly being added the wish list for many water managers. Dry conditions in central and eastern NC resulted in the expansion of D0 Abnormally Dry conditions in those regions. Winter is the period when we generally see re-charge in water resources (groundwater, streams, surface reservoirs), and managers will be watching to see how much recharge occurs during this coming winter with a La Nina event and drier conditions expected. While the most severe drought impacts are generally experienced during the summer, drought conditions can worsen even during winter months.

The NC Drought Management Advisory Council continues to have weekly technical conferences to review conditions and make recommendations to the US Drought Monitor.


US Drought Monitor for North Carolina
Courtesy NC DENR Division of Water Resources

November 2010 Drought Monitor

 

Christmas Climatology

Below you will find the warmest, coldest and wettest Christmas Days on record for various cities across North Carolina. The National Climatic Data Center has also put together information on the probability of a White Christmas for the U.S, which can be accessed here. A graphic of these probabilities is also found below.

Station Warmest Christmas Day Coldest Christmas Day Wettest Christmas Day
Asheville (310301) December 25, 1944
Max Temp: 67°F
Min Temp: 53°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 7°F
Min Temp: -8°F
December 25, 1914
2.02 inches
Cape Hatteras Billy Mitchell F (311458) December 25, 1964
Max Temp: 73°F
Min Temp: 61°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 17°F
Min Temp: 12°F
December 25, 2006
1.05 inches
Charlotte Douglas Ap (311690) December 25, 1955
Max Temp: 77°F
Min Temp: 52°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 22°F
Min Temp: 4°F
December 25, 2009
2.3 inches
Elizabeth City (312719) December 25, 1955
Max Temp: 76°F
Min Temp: 54°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 20°F
Min Temp: 7°F
December 25, 1981
1.17 inches
Fayetteville Pwc (313017) December 25, 1932
Max Temp: 79°F
Min Temp: 68°F
December 25, 1989
Max Temp: 31°F
Min Temp: 4°F
December 25, 1924
1.25 inches
Greensboro Wso Airport (313630) December 25, 1982
Max Temp: 71°F
Min Temp: 53°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 18°F
Min Temp: 1°F
December 25, 1945
1.41 inches
Greenville (313638) December 25, 1964
Max Temp: 77°F
Min Temp: 59°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 20°F
Min Temp: 4°F
December 25, 1928
1.76 inches
Goldsboro 4 SE (313510) December 25, 1987
Max Temp: 70°F
Min Temp: 62°F
December 25, 1989
Max Temp: 32°F
Min Temp: 1°F
December 25, 1969
0.67 inches
Hickory Regional Ap (314020) December 25, 1955
Max Temp: 74°F
Min Temp: 47°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 20°F
Min Temp: 2°F
December 25, 2009
1.9 inches
Raleigh 4 SW (317074) December 25, 1932
Max Temp: 73°F
Min Temp: 58°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 19°F
Min Temp: 5°F
December 25, 1921
1.55 inches
Wilmington Wso Airport (319457) December 25, 1964
Max Temp: 74°F
Min Temp: 65°F
December 25, 1983
Max Temp: 26°F
Min Temp: 9°F
December 25, 2006
2.26 inches

White Christmas Probabilities

 

What La Nina Means for the Winter

You may have heard about the La Nina event that is ongoing in the tropical Pacific Ocean. Historically, La Nina events are associated with overall drier and warmers winters in NC. What this means is that once the winter comes to an end and we look back, the average temperature is more likely to be above normal, and the total precipitation is more likely to be below-normal. A dry winter could have impacts if there is insufficient recharge for our water resources. The La Nina events of 1999-2002 brought consecutive dry winters and dropped water table levels each year so that by the spring of 2002, many streams were low and reservoirs hadn’t recharged. That primed us for extreme drought conditions in central and western NC during the summer of 2002.

But even with the climate forecast for an overall warmer, drier winter, there will still be lots of short-term weather events that will still have an impact. Indeed, we will likely have a few days with very warm weather, but still lots of days with cold temperatures. We will still have strong winter storms and probably even some snow, sleet, or freezing rain. For example, in late January 2000 (a La Nina winter), 20 inches of snow fell over central NC and impacted the US1 corridor for weeks.

So while the climate for the coming winter is more likely to be warmer and drier, we’ll still have plenty of interesting weather to handle.

 

Statewide Summary for November 2010

As part of the monthly newsletter, the SCO provides a basic summary of monthly conditions for ECONet stations. A daily version of this product for all locations that have an automated reporting station is available online at:
http://www.nc-climate.ncsu.edu/cronos/review

Station
Avg Daily
Max Temp
Avg Daily
Min Temp
Total
Rainfall
Avg Daily
Wind Speed
Max Daily
Wind Speed
Vector Avg
Wind
Aurora, NC (AURO)
64.6° F
(-0.8° F)
4 mi
44.3° F
(+1.1° F)
4 mi
0.7 in
2.7 mph
19.1 mph
1.2 mph
North Northwest (338°)
Boone, NC (BOON)
58° F
(+6° F)
1 mi
34.9° F
(+5.4° F)
1 mi
5.6 in
5.2 mph
30.9 mph
2.5 mph
West (271°)
Buckland, NC (BUCK)
62.5° F
(-0.4° F)
15 mi
36.9° F
(-0.5° F)
15 mi
0.5 in
1.9 mph
17.6 mph
0.5 mph
Northwest (317°)
Burnsville, NC (BURN)
58° F
(-1.2° F)
8 mi
32.6° F
(+2.2° F)
8 mi
3 in
4.3 mph
45.4 mph
1.1 mph
North Northwest (348°)
Castle Hayne, NC (CAST)
66.1° F
(-1.6° F)
0 mi
42.1° F
(-1.2° F)
0 mi
1.6 in
3.5 mph
23.4 mph
1.4 mph
North (4°)
Clayton, NC (CLAY)
62.5° F
(-0.1° F)
3 mi
41.3° F
(+2.6° F)
3 mi
1.2 in
4.2 mph
38 mph
1.2 mph
North Northwest (333°)
Clayton, NC (CLA2)
63.9° F
(+1.3° F)
3 mi
37.9° F
(-0.8° F)
3 mi
1.1 in
1.6 mph
16.2 mph
0.6 mph
North Northwest (336°)
Clinton, NC (CLIN)
64.7° F
(-0.2° F)
0 mi
40.2° F
(-0.9° F)
0 mi
0.7 in
3.9 mph
22.8 mph
0.6 mph
East Southeast (109°)
Durham, NC (DURH)
63.6° F
(+1.6° F)
6 mi
36° F
(-1.4° F)
6 mi
1.2 in
2 mph
54.1 mph
0.4 mph
West Northwest (295°)
Fletcher, NC (FLET)
59.6° F
(+1.4° F)
0 mi
33.1° F
(+1.5° F)
0 mi
5 in
2.9 mph
21.6 mph
1.4 mph
North (352°)
Goldsboro, NC (GOLD)
64.2° F
(-2.1° F)
5 mi
39.1° F
(-3.5° F)
5 mi
0.8 in
2.7 mph
22.1 mph
0.9 mph
West Northwest (299°)
Greensboro, NC (NCAT)
60.9° F
(+1° F)
12 mi
37.6° F
(-1° F)
12 mi
0.9 in
3.2 mph
27.2 mph
2.5 mph
West Northwest (287°)
Hamlet, NC (HAML)
64.4° F
(-0.5° F)
4 mi
38.6° F
(+1.4° F)
4 mi
2.8 in
3.5 mph
25.1 mph
0.8 mph
Northeast (41°)
High Point, NC (HIGH)
61.2° F
(-0.7° F)
2 mi
36.1° F
(-3.5° F)
2 mi
0.8 in
1.7 mph
14.7 mph
0.4 mph
North Northwest (329°)
Jackson Springs, NC (JACK)
62.1° F
(-0.3° F)
0 mi
42.7° F
(+0.9° F)
0 mi
1.7 in
5.2 mph
32.9 mph
1.7 mph
North (8°)
Laurel Springs, NC (LAUR)
53.7° F
(+0.5° F)
1 mi
31.9° F
(+3.5° F)
1 mi
5.9 in
4.5 mph
31.1 mph
1.4 mph
West Northwest (290°)
Lewiston, NC (LEWS)
62.8° F
(-0.9° F)
0 mi
38.6° F
(-0.7° F)
0 mi
0.6 in
2.4 mph
35.5 mph
1 mph
West Northwest (301°)
Lilesville, NC (LILE)
64.1° F
(-0.1° F)
9 mi
41.6° F
(-0.4° F)
9 mi
1.2 in
3.3 mph
34 mph
0.8 mph
Northwest (324°)
Mount Mitchell, NC (MITC)
45.5° F
(-1.2° F)
0 mi
31.5° F
(+2.8° F)
0 mi
7.2 in
13.4 mph
72.7 mph
10.7 mph
West Northwest (292°)
New London, NC (NEWL)
63.2° F
(+0.6° F)
2 mi
36.1° F
(-1.3° F)
2 mi
1.2 in
3 mph
49.2 mph
1.1 mph
North (358°)
Plymouth, NC (PLYM)
63.1° F
(-2.9° F)
2 mi
39.5° F
(-3.1° F)
2 mi
1 in
4.4 mph
27.8 mph
1.7 mph
North (352°)
Raleigh, NC (LAKE)
62.5° F
(-0.5° F)
0 mi
40.5° F
(-1.4° F)
0 mi
0.8 in
4.7 mph
35.7 mph
1.5 mph
North Northwest (337°)
Raleigh, NC (REED)
62.3° F
(+1° F)
3 mi
40.5° F
(-1.1° F)
3 mi
3 in
3.1 mph
14.9 mph
1.1 mph
North Northwest (336°)
Rocky Mount, NC (ROCK)
63.4° F
(-0.8° F)
0 mi
38.6° F
(-2° F)
0 mi
0.6 in
3.5 mph
24.9 mph
0.7 mph
North Northwest (344°)
Salisbury, NC (SALI)
62.1° F
(+1.3° F)
0 mi
34.2° F
(-1.9° F)
0 mi
1.1 in
2 mph
21.6 mph
0.6 mph
Northwest (324°)
Siler City, NC (SILR)
61.9° F
(-0.3° F)
5 mi
34.6° F
(-3.9° F)
5 mi
0.9 in
2.8 mph
25.3 mph
0.8 mph
North (358°)
Taylorsville, NC (TAYL)
60.9° F
35° F
3.3 in
1.7 mph
45.4 mph
0.3 mph
Northwest (314°)
Wallace, NC (WILD)
65.3° F
(-3.2° F)
8 mi
40.7° F
(-3.4° F)
8 mi
2 in
3.9 mph
37.6 mph
1.1 mph
North (5°)
Waynesville, NC (WAYN)
59.2° F
(+0.9° F)
0 mi
32.5° F
(+2.7° F)
0 mi
5.2 in
1.7 mph
26.7 mph
0.3 mph
East Northeast (56°)
Whiteville, NC (WHIT)
65.6° F
(-3.6° F)
0 mi
39.6° F
(-1.8° F)
0 mi
1.8 in
2.6 mph
22.4 mph
0.6 mph
North (359°)
Williamston, NC (WILL)
63.3° F
(-1° F)
4 mi
39.3° F
(-1.9° F)
4 mi
1 in
2.5 mph
24.5 mph
0.8 mph
Northwest (318°)
Legend:
Parameter
Parameter's value approximated from hourly data.
( +/- Departure from normal )
Distance to reference station

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