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February 1, 2013

January rainfall way below historic average

A cold and dry January finished Thursday with a familiar refrain: chilly in the morning and rain-free.

The month was a disappointment in terms of precipitation as the rain that fell so freely in most of December shut off just after Christmas. The comparison between the two months is stark:

In downtown Sacramento, there were 14 days of rainfall in December. A total of 6.46 inches of rain fell in the month.

Some of the days of rain were soakers, including 1.38 inches on Dec. 2. But in January, the entire month did not record the amount of rain that fell on that one December day.

A total of 1.06 inches fell in January. That's a paltry amount when compared with a normal January, in which 4.18 inches falls.

It was also pretty cold in January, with downtown recording 12 days of temperatures at or below freezing. The coldest day was Jan. 13 when the mercury dipped to 27 degrees.

Looking ahead, the National Weather Service shows mostly a continuation of the weather pattern through the middle of next week.

– Bill Lindelof

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