September temperatures in Malone were interesting. The first half of the month was slightly below normal followed by a period of well below normal temperatures. That was followed by the last quarter of the month with record-breaking high temperatures. The result of the roller coaster temperatures was a mean for the month of 58.0 degrees, 1/2 degree above normal.
September’s temperature pattern was similar to a year ago, when the first third of the month was cooler than normal and the last third was above.
Highest temperature this September was 84 degrees on the 26th, a new record for the date replacing an 82-degree reading from 2017. The lowest reading was 29 degrees on the 19th, not a record but only one degree above. September’s record high is 90 degrees in both 2002 and 2007 while the lowest reading was 26 degrees in 2000. Besides the record-breaking 84 reading on the 26th, three records for cold temperatures were broken. They include 32 degrees on the 18th (old record 33 in 1990), 32 degrees on the 21st (old record 34 in 1991), and 34 degrees on the 22nd (old record 36 in 2008). A 35-degree reading on the 15th tied the old record set in 1983.
The warmest September in Malone over the past 38 years was in 2015, with a mean temperature of 63.5 degrees, and the coldest was in 1995, with a mean of 53.6.
September heating degree-days totaled 237 compared with a normal of 250. For the heating season so far (beginning July 1), heating degree-days total 287 compared to a normal of 359.
Rainfall for September totaled 2.29 inches, well below the normal of 3.98 inches. This continues the trend of below-normal precipitation since April. Total precipitation since Jan. 1 (rainfall plus melted snowfall) totals 25.53 inches, over three inches below the normal of 28.87 for the first nine months of the year.
The wettest September over the past 38 years was 9.01 inches in 2005 and the driest September was in 2017 with only 1.35 inches. This September would have been the driest but for 1.34 inches of rainfall at the end of the month.
September’s unofficial maximum wind gust in Malone was 41 mph on the 7th and the average velocity for the month was 5.3 mph from the southwest.
· Mean temperature: 58.0 degrees
· Normal mean: 57.5 degrees
· Warmest mean: 63.5 degrees (2015)
· Coldest mean: 53.6 degrees (1995)
· Highest temperature: 84 degrees (26th)
· September record high: 90 (2007, 2002)
· Lowest temperature: 29 degrees: (19th)
· September record low: 26 (2000)
· Temperature records broken: 4 (3 low, 1 high)
· Precipitation: 2.29 inches
· Normal precipitation: 3.98 inches
· Record precipitation: 9.01 inches (2005)
· Least precipitation: 1.35 inches (2017)
· Maximum wind gust: 41 mph
· Average wind: 5.3 mph (southwest)
October’s atmosphere is restless and unsettled and undergoes frequent and drastic changes. Temperatures can vary from the 60s and 70s to sub-freezing with snow flurries and even some accumulations. While normal snowfall in Malone is 2 inches, 12 inches fell during October 2008, (11 1/2 inches in one storm), the most for October in at least 38 years. Other October snow totals include 11.5 inches in 1988, 6.5 inches in 2005, and 6 inches in 1997. In 18 of the past 37 Octobers, we had no measurable snow.
In Malone, the average date of the first trace of snow is Oct. 17 and the average date for the first measurable snow is the 30th. Earliest date for the first trace of snow is Sept. 29, 1991; the latest date is Nov. 9, 1985. For the first measurable snow, the earliest date is Oct. 4, 1999 and the latest is Nov. 26 in 2012.
During October the normal temperature in Malone falls from 51 degrees on the 1st to 40 degrees by the end of the month. Normal high decreases from 61 to 49 and the normal low falls from 42 to 31 degrees. Over the past 38 years, the highest October temperature was 81 degrees in 2005 and the lowest was 19 in three different years.
The average date of the first frost in Malone is Oct. 3. This year our first frost was on Sept. 18. The earliest 32-degree or below reading was on Sept. 5, 2000, and the latest frost was in 2013 when the first frost occurred on Oct. 24. On average, we can expect below freezing temperatures on 10 days and maximum temperatures above 60 degrees on nine days.
The bulk of our precipitation is derived from traveling storms that move across or near the state. The normal for Malone is 4.02 inches. Over the past 38 years, the least precipitation was 0.59 inches in 1994 and the greatest was 10.28 in 2010, but that total included about three inches which fell on Sept. 30 after 7 a.m. and therefore was included with the October total.
Daylight will decrease by one hour and 30 minutes during October. Sunrise is at 6:56 a.m. on the 1st and by the 31st is at 7:35 a.m., 39 minutes later. Sunset is 6:37 p.m. on the 1st and 5:46 p.m. on the 31st, a change of 51 minutes.
We return to Standard time on the first Sunday in November.
On Oct. 1, 1946, a snowstorm of at least 6-8 inches hit Malone and the surrounding area, causing considerable damage and widespread power outages.
Eastern New York and Western New England received their earliest heavy snow of record on Oct. 4, 1987. Totals included 22 inches at Gratin, NY; 20 at North Springfield, Vt; 12 inches at Great Barrington, Mass; and 9.5 inches at Norfolk, Conn. At one time, there were a million people without power.
On the 18th in 1930, an early season snow burst to the lee of Lakes Erie and Ontario produced 48 inches of snow just south of Buffalo.
On the 24th in 1969, an early outbreak of cold weather set all-time October lows in Concord, NH (10 degrees) and Albany, NY (16 degrees).
On the 29th in 1917, the temperature at Soda Butte, Wyoming, plunged to -33 degrees, setting the U.S. cold record for the month of October.