The temperature dropped to a very chilly unofficial low of 24 degrees Thursday morning at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, on the next-to-last day of November.
It was typical of a November that has been notable for two things -- cold mornings and drought.
Through the first 28 days of the month, the average temperature in Charlotte has been 2.8 degrees below the seasonal norm. However, morning lows have been 4.8 degrees below average.
It’s been a month of nice afternoons, for the most part, but cold mornings.
On 23 of the 29 days so far this month, the morning low was below average. Only six days were milder than usual for morning lows. Thursday’s 24-degree reading was the second-coldest in November, behind only the 21-degree low Sunday.
The big difference between afternoon highs and morning lows is a sign of the dry air that has covered the region. With low humidity, temperatures rise and fall by a wide margin between day and night. With the dry air comes a lack of rainfall, and Charlotte is more than 2 inches below average for precipitation.
Changes are coming -- for temperatures, not for rainfall.
Milder temperatures are expected to dominate the Carolinas weather for several days, with readings -- both morning and afternoon -- well above seasonal averages later this weekend and early next week.
Charlotte’s 24 degrees wasn’t the coldest in the region Thursday morning.
Unofficial lows of 21 degrees were recorded in Morganton and Salisbury, and it was 23 degrees at 7 a.m. at New London in northern Stanly County. Other chilly 7 a.m. readings included 24 degrees in Taylorsville; and 25 degrees in Albemarle and Lincolnton. Concord, Hickory, Lancaster, Rock Hill, Rockingham, Shelby and Wadesboro had unofficial lows in the upper 20s.
The warm-up is already under way. The temperature climbed from 24 to 31 degrees between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. in Charlotte, and it’s forecast to reach 55 degrees Thursday afternoon. Friday’s high is predicted at 60 degrees, and highs in the mid to upper 60s are predicted from Sunday through Tuesday.
The next cold front is predicted to cross the region late Tuesday and Wednesday, but computer models indicate the system will not bring much rainfall.