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January weather a mixed bag of highs, lows in region





Likely, the focus today is on the snow flying right now.

But it's always nice to take a look at conditions during the past month, even if it offered up a bit of a mixed bag.

Temperatures in January in Hays were both warmer and colder, but the average came in at 28.4 degrees, right in line with what can be expected during the month, according to records maintained at the Kansas State University Agricultural Research Center at the south edge of Hays.

Highs were nearly 2 degrees warmer than normal, but the lows -- typically the nighttime lows -- were approximately a degree colder than normal.

The ranges varied dramatically, hitting a high of 69 degrees Jan. 19 and falling to a low of 8 below zero Jan. 6.

At the National Weather Service office in Goodland, the spread was from 66 degrees Jan. 3 to 9 below Jan. 5 and 6. Hill City saw 69 degrees Jan. 19, bouncing back from a 9-below zero reading Jan. 6.

At the Colby Research-Extension Center, the swing even was more dramatic, ranging from a high of 69 degrees Jan. 20 to a low of 14 below zero Jan. 6.

Rainfall was sparse across northwest Kansas in January, amounting to 0.16 of an inch in Hays, nearly a third of an inch less than normal.

Hill City had only 0.1 of an inch of moisture, 0.35 of an inch below normal. Goodland measured 0.57 of an inch from 9.6 inches of snow.

Colby reported 0.3 of an inch, 0.12 of an inch below normal.

Hays has recorded 1.8 inches of snow so far this year, slightly more than the 3.51 that would be considered average in 119 years of record-keeping.

Colby had 6.5 inches of snow.