After a colder-than-usual December, Sunnyside could be in for a break in the weather, the National Weather Service reports, as the January outlook is for above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation.
That's in contrast to December, when the mercury dipped 10 degrees below normal for the Sunnyside area.
That's according to preliminary figures released today, Monday, by the National Weather Service's Pendleton, Ore. office.
The average temperature in Sunnyside during December was 23.1 degrees, 9.3 degrees below normal.
Things were even colder at night, as low temperatures in December averaged 15.3 degrees. That's a full 10 degrees below normal.
The month was so cold that more than half of the days in December, 16, failed to get warmer than freezing, 32 degrees.
The coldest part of the month was the second week of December, Dec. 8-12, when the mercury plummeted to lows of zero or minus one degree.
Despite the chilly bite, December saw less precipitation than normal in Sunnyside. For the month, total precipitation was .71 inches, .43 inches below normal.
December, and 2009, ended on a white note as snowfall reportedly totaled 2.4 inches for the month.
The National Weather Service's summary stated that the most snowfall for any one day during the month was one inch on Dec. 30.
The National Weather Service's report did not reflect snowfall for Dec. 31, even though Sunnyside received several inches that day.
Dennis Hull is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, and he says it's because the weather service's reporters record snowfall for a 24-hour period from 8 a.m. to 8 a.m.
The large snowfall Sunnyside received on Dec. 31 came after 8 a.m. that day.
Hull told the Daily Sun News that total snowfall from 8 a.m. on Dec. 31 to 8 a.m. Jan. 1 totaled four inches. That accumulation, he noted, will be included on the January 2010 summary.