CHICAGO, IL – While Chicago may still be experiencing freezing cold temperatures, residents will hope that the worst of the weather has passed. This is because new data reveals that the weekend from January 14th to January 15th was one of the city’s coldest ever. On both days, the minimum temperature dropped to -9 which entered the two consecutive days into the history books. For standalone cold days, January 14th was the 23rd coldest day ever in The Windy City.
However, those without a short memory will recall January 2019 as being far colder, with a minimum temperature of -22. This made it the coldest ever day from the recorded data which runs from December 1990 to January 2024.
While Chicago isn’t the coldest city in the US, it is certainly up there and its winters are notorious. Chicago’s notorious winters can be traced back to its location in the Midwest of the United States, where the city is particularly susceptible to the frigid winds that blow down from Canada. This geographical positioning means that the city often experiences harsh winter conditions, with temperatures regularly dipping well below freezing.
The key culprit behind Chicago’s extreme winters is something called the “lake-effect snow,” which is caused by the proximity of Lake Michigan. The frigid air from Canada passes over the warm waters of Lake Michigan, picking up moisture and dumping it as snow when it hits the cooler landmass of Chicago. Unfortunately for Chicago residents, it looks like this chilly snap is here to stay for the next few days.