National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Weather History - January 31st

Local and Regional Events:

January 31, 1969:

Minnesota experienced many winter storms throughout the month of 1969 where several people had died from heart attacks and auto accidents. Many roads were blocked or iced over several times during the month. Considerable snow during the month of January along with frequent periods of strong winds resulted in many days of blowing and drifting snow across northeast South Dakota. There were also many days with freezing rain. The most significant icing occurred on the 22nd and the 27th. There were numerous days where the traffic was at a standstill due to blocked roads and closed airports. Many school closings occurred throughout the month with many activities cancelled. Many rural roads went long periods without being opened resulting in hardships for farmers. Days of blowing snow were the 8th, 19th, 22nd, 23th, 24th, 26th, 27th, and 31st. Days of freezing rain were the 5th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th and the 22nd.


U.S.A and Global Events for January 31st:

1911: Tamarack, California was without snow the first eight days of the month, but by the end of January, they had been buried under 390 inches of snow, a record monthly total for the United States. By March 11, 1911, Tamarack had a record snow depth of 451 inches.


1979: A winter storm that started on the previous day and ended on this day spread 2 to 4 inches of rainfall in 24 hours over much of coastal Southern California, and two inches of snow in Palm Springs. Snow fell heavily in Palm Springs and 8 inches fell at Lancaster. All major interstates into Los Angeles were closed. Snow drifts shut down Interstate 10 on both sides of Palm Springs, isolating the city. 

1989: The barometric pressure at Norway, Alaska reached 31.85 inches (1078.4 mb) establishing an all-time record for the North American Continent. The temperature at the time of the record was about 46 degrees below zero. Severe arctic cold began to invade the north central U.S. The temperature at Grand Fall, Montana plunged 85 degrees in 36 hours. Valentine, Nebraska plummeted from a record high of 70 degrees to zero in just nine hours. Northwest winds gusted to 86 mph at Lander WY, and wind chill readings of 80 degrees below zero were reported in Montana. Sixty-four cities in the central U.S. reported record highs for the date as readings reached the 60s in Michigan and the 80s in Kansas.


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