Chicago's Winter Without A Winter Is Breaking Even More Records

By Rachel Cromidas in News on Feb 22, 2017 7:43PM


Highs are in the 70s in Chicago today, and just so we're clear, it's still February—and the city is breaking yet more records for warmer than average winter days without snow.

Today is the 67th consecutive day without measurable snowfall in Chicago, according to WGN, and the city has never gone this long without even an inch of snow during the meteorological winter. The previous record was 66 days, between 1921 and 1922. The lack of snow is in part to blame for the similarly record-breaking warm spell we've been experiencing. Today is the 6th day in a row that Chicago's highs have breached 60 degrees, which, again, is pretty much unheard of for February.

The temperature is going back down later this week to cold but still above-freezing levels. As one Chicago Redditor pointed out, it's going to feel a bit like having four seasons condensed into four days:

Looks like all 4 seasons in the next 4 days is in the forecast from chicago

The weather is exciting, until you remember that Chicago needs those days with temperatures in the teens to fully kill off pests between summers. Another local Redditor claims to have already found a mosquito on the prowl. Not great:

The first mosquito of summer. It's February.

But, less measurable than snow droughts and degrees of warmth is the psychic toll that Chicago's winter-without-a-winter could be taking on Chicagoans. More sun (and more time outside without having to bundle into a parka) means less Seasonal Affective Disorder. But we're still finding it a bit hard to enjoy this local weather fluke when we know it's part of a disturbing climate change trend that will likely lead to more extreme weather for us, and others, down the line.

And winter is an essential part of being a Chicagoan, right? We pride ourselves on our hardiness (Can't handle the cold? Enjoy NYC, where people fold their pizzas in half and stack trash on their sidewalks), our willingness to wear puffy coats from January to April, our love of hygge, our penchant for shoveling snow and our ability to call dibs, whether our neighbors like it or not.

Plus, as a local writer, I for one am feeling more than a little lost without the annual barrage of "How To Ride Your Bike In The Winter" and "Chicago's Best Indoor Activities"-type stories. How To Beat Back The Existential Dread When It's A Balmy 73 In Late-February, anyone?

Just as we asked back in November, what is Chicago without a losing Cubs team? We ask now, what's Chicago without a winter? It looks like we're going to find out.