A Pleasant Fall Gives Way To Mild Start of Winter

OSWEGO, NY – Old Man Winter returns on Sunday – the first day of the winter season. Or is it?

Temperatures Sunday are expected to be in the mid 30s. Monday’s highs will be in the upper 30s. Tuesday’s outlook is breezy with rain developing and a high in the lower 40s

On Wednesday, Christmas Eve, it’ll seem more like spring with strong winds and rain with a high of 50!

But, it looks like we’ll be receiving a “present” from Old Man Winter on Christmas Day as things get colder again and showers change over to flurries with temperatures plunging to near 30.

At least we’ll have a pleasant autumn to look back on.

For record keeping, the National Weather Service breaks the seasons into 3-month blocks with fall being September, October and November, according to Bill Gregway, local observer for the NWS.

Winter arrives at 6:03 p.m. on Sunday, the winter solstice, with a stretch of unseasonably mild weather, Gregway said.

The average temperature for fall was 52.2 degrees. That is 1 degree higher than average. The highest temperature was 89 degrees on Sept. 5. The lowest was 18 degrees on Nov. 19.

“We set a record and tied another,” Gregway told Oswego County Today.

The mercury fell to 35 degrees on Sept. 19 breaking the old record (37 degrees) set in 1969.  On Nov. 24 it got up to 69 degrees to tie the record set in 1931.

Total precipitation, 7.98 inches, was 4.43 inches below normal.

It wasn’t for lack of snowfall. This fall saw 17.1 inches of snow. That is 7.6 inches above average.

The greatest precipitation in a 24-hour period came over Nov. 6 and 7 – 1.22 inches.

For the year, precipitation was 35.03 inches at the end of fall. That is 4.10 inches below average, Gregway pointed out.

“We had 58 days when measurable precip fell and just 33 with no precip,” he said.

Fall 2014 was a bit dreary, he added.

The area received 39 percent of the possible amount of sunshine. That is 3 percentages below average.

The number of cloudy days, 53, was 6 more than average.

The number of partly cloudy days, 30, was 5 more than average.

However, the number of clear days, 8, was 11 below average, Gregway noted.

There were 2 thunderstorms last fall. That is 2 below average.

And, there was just 1 foggy day. That is 1 below normal.

The highest barometric pressure was 30.55 on Sept. 24. The lowest was 29.30 on Nov. 24.

The strongest winds were west-southwesterly at more than 40 mph on Nov. 18.

“The other months had some wind as well. A lot of them were in the 30s,” he said. “It was a windy season.”

There wasn’t any frost at the weather station during the fall, Gregway said, adding that the first time he recorded temperature below freezing was 30 degrees on Nov. 14.

“That (Nov. 14) was the end of our growing season; temperatures fell below freezing and we received our first measurable snowfall (3.3 inches). The growing season was 208 days this year,” he said.

The average growing season here is 182 days. So, this year “was up there,” Gregway said, but added, “It’s no biggie.”

In 1998, the growing season last 251 days, he pointed out.

Overall, it was a pleasant, dry fall, Gregway said. We got snow – but it melted away in a day or so he said, adding that trend could mean a green Christmas this year.


  1. Gregway at odds with the National Weather Service: December 1st or December 21st. The start of “Winter” is now an “opinion” instead of a date.

  2. It says winter returns Sunday, December 21. For record keeping NWS breaks seasons into four three-month blocks

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