Insanely Cold Temperatures Set New Records in Montana
Frigid sub-zero temperatures Wednesday and Thursday broke several records across the state of Montana.
When I checked my weather app at around 8:00 a.m. Thursday morning, it said it was -39 in Manhattan, but with the wind chill, it felt like -55. Montanans are accustomed to cold weather, but for some, the cold temperatures this week were the coldest they've experienced in their lifetime. There have been several reports of people waking up to dead batteries in their vehicles.
Temperatures on Wednesday and Thursday also broke multiple records across the state, according to the National Weather Service in Great Falls. We spoke with Meteorologist Paul Nutter to find out more, and here's what he told us.
At 8:00 a.m. on Thursday morning, a wind chill of -67 was recorded at the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport, making it one of the coldest temperatures in all of Montana. The coldest temperature recorded was -50 in Elk Park just north of Butte, where temperatures including wind chill dropped to -74.
Great Falls also broke a low-temperature record on December 22. The previous record of -27 was set in 1892, three years after Montana became a state. The new record in Great Falls is -32.
The colder the temperature and the stronger the wind, the faster frostbite can occur. Frostbite can set in within 30 minutes when the wind chill drops to 15 degrees below zero. So when it gets cold and windy it’s important to take precautions.
Temperatures are expected to warm drastically over the weekend. In Bozeman, a high of 40 degrees is forecasted for Christmas day, which is nearly 80 degrees warmer than the low on Thursday. For more information about weather records in Montana, contact the National Weather Service in Great Falls.