Weather extremes in the USA

E. Linacre


The following are the officially accepted weather record in the USA (1).





maximum temp

56.7 C

10 July 1913

Greenland Ranch, California

minimum temp

- 62.2 C

23 January 1971

Prospect Creek, Alaska

max change in 24 hrs

55.6 K

23-24 January 1916

Browning, Montana

max 24-hr snowfall

1.93 m

14-15 April 1921

Silver Lake, Colorado

max seasonal snowfall

28.5 m


Paradise WS, Washington

max actual snow depth

11.4 m

11 March 1911

Tamarack, California

max rain in 24 hrs

1.09 m

25-6 July 1979

Alvin, Texas

min annual rain



Death Valley, California

max annual rain

17.9 m


Kukui, Hawaii

longest dry period

767 days

from 3 October 1912

Bagdad, California

max wind gust

103 m/s

12 April 1934

Mt Washington, New Hampshire

min pressure

892.3 hPa

2 September 1935

Matecumbe Key, Florida

max pressure

1078.6 hPa

31 January 1969

Northway, Alaska


There have been changes in the frequency of extreme values of temperature since the late 1940's at least (2). Throughout the USA on average the number of days with minima below freezing has fallen by almost 2 days per decade. Larger falls were observed in the northern Great Plains and Great Lakes regions, especially in spring. The warming accords with the extension of the frost-free period by almost 11 days each year in the northeastern states (3).



(1) Horvitz, A., M. Changery and A. Dutcher, 1999. The National Climate Extremes Committee. Preprints to the 11th Conf. on Appl. Climatol., Dallas, Texas (Amer. Meteor. Soc.), 185-6.

(2) Easterling, D.R., 1999. Variations and trends in extreme temperature events in the USA. Preprints to the 11th Conf. on Appl. Climatol., Dallas, Texas (Amer. Meteor. Soc.), 201.

(3) Cooter, E.J. and S.K. LeDuc, 1995. Recent frost date trends in the northeastern United States. Internat. J. Climatol., 15, 65-75.