Elwell: Lowest temperatures since 2014 could hit this week

Published: Monday, January 01, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Tips for battling the cold temperatures

We are not even two weeks into winter and already it feels like the middle of January with bone-chilling cold.

Temperatures fell below zero late last month and they just keep coming. It has been nearly three years since temperatures have fallen more than a couple of degrees below zero.

»RELATED: January will be beautiful month to look into the sky. Here’s why.

The bitterness of winter looks to continue through the rest of this week with temperatures not felt since the “polar vortex” paid the region a visit in 2013 and 2014. If some of the models are correct, parts of the Miami Valley will see temperatures well below zero before this week is over, not to mention some extreme wind chills.


Interestingly, while temperatures have certainly been low enough for snow, we so far have been spared any major winter storms. Snowfall for the month of December was fairly close to average despite the well below average temperatures.

The colder it is, the less likely we are to have any major snow storms. You may have even heard that it can be too cold to snow. While that saying is not exactly true, it is accurate that the cooler the air is, the less moisture the air can hold. Thus, it is just a bit more difficult to get a bigger snow event when deep arctic air is in place.

Tips to keep your home cozy and heating costs down in the cold

It is when the pattern begins to change that bigger winter storms tend to occur. Such a pattern change … or at least, adjustment, may occur between the second and third week of January. It is very typical, especially in a La Niña year such as we are in, to get a bit of a “January thaw”. Temperatures may even rise well above freezing during this time.

»RELATED: How will La Niña affect the Miami Valley? 

However, it is when the cold air attempts to return when bigger winter storms can develop. Whether that occurs in the coming weeks is still to be seen. But a more active storm track with above normal precipitation being forecast by the Climate Prediction Center over the next week to 10 days.

While we get ready to dive deep into the coldest, snowiest month of the year here in Ohio, it is important to point out some global perspective. Typically, when we talk about how cold it is here in the Ohio Valley, meteorologists typically get sent messages about what we think about climate change. But just some quick fact checks, while the data is still being finalized, 2017 likely will end up as one of the three warmest years on record globally, according to peer-reviewed analysis released by the World Meteorological Organization.

According to the University of Maine, while the eastern half of the United States was locked in a deep freeze in the last week of December, much of the rest of the planet experienced temperatures above seasonably averages. In fact, some of the warmest readings compared to what is normal for this time of year occurred over both the north and south poles.

Despite the brutal cold here in the Miami Valley, most meteorologists and climatologists continue to be alarmed at the warmth at both poles. Arctic and Antarctic sea ice cover remain at near record lows. The current observed rate of sea ice decline and rising temperatures are higher than at any time over the last 1,500 years.

Eric Elwell is WHIO StormCenter 7 Chief Meteorologist. Contact him at eric.elwell@coxinc.com or follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

WPAFB Tuesday Weather: Possible passing rain, snow shower; gusty winds

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 12:27 AM

WRIGHT PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE— Chance of a passing rain or snow showers during the day, otherwise cloudy, blustery and cold with temperatures in the 30s, according to Storm Center 7 Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs.

RELATED: January thunderstorms in Miami Valley

Winds may gust as high as 30mph creating wind chills in the 20s.

No snow accumulations expected.

WPAFB Monday Weather: Rain showers, mild temperatures throughout day

Published: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 12:19 AM

WRIGHT PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE— Grab the umbrella as you head out the door today.

RELATED: County-by-County Weather 

While we're not anticipating a lot of rain to fall, we will see a few showers today. This will continue into the evening hours as well.

Temperatures today will be on the mild side. We'll top out in the middle 50s this afternoon.

Warming trend to last through the weekend

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:12 AM
Updated: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 6:54 PM

Flooding concerns increase with snowmelt and rain this weekend.

A gradual warm-up will continue through the weekend and into the start of next week, according to Storm Center 7 Chief Meteorologist Eric Elwell. 


  • Some refreeze possible tonight
  • Temperatures climb into the 40s this weekend
  • Wet, but mild start to next week

>> WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar


Tonight: Mainly clear skies are expected through the evening. Breezy conditions and chilly as temperatures fall through the 30s towards an overnight low in the upper 20s.

5 Day Forecast with Chief Meteorologist Eric Elwell

>> 4 tricks to help avoid illness during big temperature changes

Saturday: Sunshine to start the day, but clouds will increase late, Elwell said. It will be breezy at times with highs in the lower to middle 40s.

Sunday: Lots of clouds are expected during the day with a chance for drizzle or light rain and fog. Highs will be in the middle 40s.

>> Another eclipse is on the way, featuring a ‘Blood Moon’

Monday: Rain will be likely, especially in the afternoon. Gusty winds will also be likely with highs in the lower 50s. 

Tuesday: Colder air returns with blustery, cloudy conditions. A few passing flurries or snow showers are possible with highs in the middle 30s.

>> WHIO Weather App

Wednesday: Some sunshine returns but it will stay chilly. Highs will be in the upper 30s

WPAFB Friday Forecast: Chilly start, warm-up underway

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 1:06 AM

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. TODD JACKSON | STAFF
Staff Writer
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. TODD JACKSON | STAFF(Staff Writer)

After another chilly start, temperatures will make it back above freezing this afternoon for the first time in a week with highs in the middle 30s, said Storm Center 7 Chief Meteorologist Eric Elwell.

>> WHIO Doppler 7 HD Interactive Radar

Skies will remain mostly sunny. Dry weather will stick around through the day Saturday with some increase in clouds late in the day and evening. Temperatures are expected to rebound into the middle 40s.

>> Another eclipse is on the way, featuring a ‘Blood Moon’

The warming trend will continue into Sunday, although you'll have to dust of the umbrellas with the chance for showers arriving by mid-morning.

>> WHIO Weather App

Showers will be even more likely Monday as high temperatures reach 50 degrees before falling late in the day.