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Boston shatters 116-year cold weather record

Commuters waited for buses in the early morning cold at Bellingham Square in Chelsea on Saturday.Dina Rudick/Globe Staff

Temperatures in Boston hit 23 degrees Saturday morning, making it the coldest Nov. 11 since 1901, according to the National Weather Service.

“We hit 23 [degrees] this morning. The last time it got so cold was in 1901, when it was 24 [degrees],” said Bill Simpson, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service, on Saturday morning.

Sunday could “come close” to mirroring Saturday’s record-breaking temperatures, Simpson said, although a slight warming would probably deprive Greater Boston of two record-breaking days in a row.

Sunday is expected to be sunny with a high of 43 degrees and a low of 36 degrees. The coldest Nov. 12 on record was in 1926, when temperatures hit 25 degrees.


The cause of these record-breaking temperatures is an Arctic system that settled over much of New England early Saturday morning, Simpson said.

“These systems are pretty rare, but when you’ve got a large air mass coming down directly from the North Pole, we end up with classic mid-January weather,” he said.

The normal high for this time of year is 53 degrees, he said, a full 18 degrees warmer than Saturday’s high of 35.

If the abnormally low temperatures weren’t enough, the weather system brought frigid winds with it, resulting in windchills more suited for January or February, Simpson said.

“We’re seeing [a] windchill of about 10 degrees in the pre-dawn hours,” he said Saturday morning.

The Arctic system will linger through the week, and temperatures will gradually increase as it dissipates, Simpson said.

“People should expect to have below average temperatures for the foreseeable future,” Simpson said.

The week is expected to start off slightly warmer than the weekend; temperatures could reach the mid-40s Monday, said Hayden Frank, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, late Saturday afternoon.

There also is a chance of showers after 11 a.m. Monday, but forecasters believe not more than one-tenth of an inch of precipitation is expected to fall.


Temperatures will remain consistent through Tuesday and Wednesday with highs in the mid-40s and upper-40s, Frank said.

There is a slight chance of showers between midnight and 4 a.m. Wednesday, although, again, less than one-tenth of an inch of rain is expected to fall.

Thursday and Friday are expected to be sunny and somewhat warmer with a high of 50 degrees.

Globe correspondent Jacob Carozza contributed to this report.