Cold weather comes and goes in the winter, but anytime lows get into the teens and 20s below zero, we are reminded of the extremes of our climate in the northern plains. With temperatures around 14 below zero last night, that's the coldest Sioux Falls has seen in about 3 years. Our current forecast keeps overnight lows near or below zero the next several days.
The intensity of the this outbreak might be close to February of 2007, when Sioux Falls had 10 straight nights of subzero lows February 1 through the 10.
As cold as all of this sounds, this December will be hard pressed to match the brutal cold of 1983. That arctic outbreak still holds many records. The temperature stayed at our below zero every hour for 9 and half days in Sioux Falls. There was a blizzard on Christmas Eve when the mercury fell to 22 below zero with a 30 mph wind. The wind chill on the old chart back in those days was -82.
That's proof things can be much worse than this.