There’s a certain satisfaction that comes with a weather milestone. Climatological extremes are uncomfortable at best, and downright dangerous at worst, so it’s nice to have our collective experience count for something.
Of course, those records are lot more attractive when they’re within reach. Who would have asked last fall for 108.6 inches of snow?
The snowfall record we broke this difficult winter stood for less than two decades. The annals of Boston weather contain many longer-standing and more extreme meteorological records. Here, courtesy of the Northeast Regional Climate Center, are some of the most stubborn — and scary.
Highest temperature 104 degrees - July 4, 1911
Background: A normal July day in Boston has a high around 81. A normal July day in Phoenix is around 106.
Minus 18 degrees - Feb 9, 1934
Background: The average February low in Boston is about 25 degrees. The coldest temperature observed last month in Fairbanks, Alaska, was minus 20.
Average temperature of 74.1 degrees - 1983 and 1949
Background: In July, typically the hottest month of Boston’s year, the average temperature (which accounts for highs, lows and readings in between), is 73.4 degrees.
Average of 23.9 degrees - 1917-18
Background: The normal average for January is 29 degrees.
1878 - 65.53 inches of total precipitation
Background: Last month, this reading, which accounts for both rain and the water contained in snow, came in at 3.37 inches. Mobile, Ala., one of the wettest places in the United States, often gets about 65 inches in a year, according to historical measurements compiled by the Western Regional Climate Center.
1965 - 23.71 inches of precipitation
Background: This is closer to the annual amount in the area around Los Angeles (though recent seasons have been dry there).
Highest sustained wind
86.3 mph, during Hurricane Carol on Aug 31, 1954
Background: Carol was one of the most violent hurricanes ever to hit Southern New England, and left 65 people dead. Sustained winds were even higher in Connecticut, where they approached 100 miles per hour.
Daily snowfall in Boston
On March 15, this year's snowfall broke the record-setting total from 1995-1996. Data through Mar. 23, 2015 at 11 a.m.
DATA: National Weather Service, Boston; NOAA