HARTINGTON — Last year will go down — as a whole — as one of the hottest years on record in Cedar County.
The hottest year on record here was in 1931 when the average daily temperature for the entire year was 53 degrees. The 1930s were by far the hottest and dryest decade recorded here since record-keeping began in 1894,
Despite the above average temperatures here in 2016, the year marked the third year in a row that not a single 100-degree day was recorded here.
In comparison, the thermometer climbed over the 100-degree mark 12 times in 2012.
While the thermometer never got into triple digits, it reached at least 80 degrees on 94 different occassions here in 2016 and topped 90 degrees 30 times.
While 2016 proved to be an above-average year for hot temperatures, it was balanced out by ample rain, and plenty of mild or cool days.
Timely rains, cold winter nights and mid-winter storms were the big weather stories here in 2016.
The hottest day of the year was recorded in mid-June. The mercury peaked at 99 degrees here June 11. Cedar County experienced a heatwave from July 4-Aug. 18. The high only got below 80 twice in this stretch and was above 85 degrees 33 times.
The biggest one-day temperature swing was 46 degrees on April 4 when the day started out at 31 degrees, but by the time the sun went down the mercury had reached a high of 77 degrees.
The middle of December represented the biggest cold snap of the year with the temperature never getting above freezing from Dec. 6-18. The coldest day of the year was recorded during that arctic blast, as it hit negative 17 degrees Dec. 18.
There were 10 days in 2016 when the mercury dipped to zero or below.
The U.S. Climate Data Center lists Hartington’s average annual precipitation at 28.15. In 2016, 29.52 inches of precipitation fell here. The most precip ever recorded in one year here was in 1915 when 41.45 inches of precipitation fell here.
The heaviest rainfall of the year came down April 20, when 2.45 inches of rain was recorded in Hartington rain gauges. That helped make April the second wettest month of the year.
An inch or more of rain fell here on seven different days during the year.
May turned out to be the wettest month of the year with 5.55 inches of measurable precipitation. April was next with 5.43 inches of rain.
Check out page three of this week’s Cedar County News for the complete day-by-day glance at the weather here in 2016.