Carolinas residents awoke Monday to record-tying cold temperatures, but meteorologists said a return to milder weather is on the way.
After a weekend in which snow fell across the North Carolina mountains and in parts of western and central South Carolina, temperatures tumbled Monday morning under clear skies and with light winds.
Schools opened two hours late Monday in Avery and Watauga counties because of icy secondary roads in the high country.
The temperature fell to 24 degrees shortly before daybreak at Charlotte Douglas International Airport, tying the record low for the date, set in 1954. It was the coldest morning in Charlotte since March 24, when the low was also 24.
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The coldest 6 a.m. reading in the area was 19 degrees at Old Fort in McDowell County. Other chilly readings included 24 degrees at Morganton; 25 at Rock Hill and Salisbury; 26 at Lincolnton and Taylorsville; 27 at Statesville and Wadesboro; and 28 at Lancaster, S.C., and Gastonia.
But the recovery began by midday Monday, and Charlotte’s temperature had soared to 60 degrees by 1 p.m., headed into the mid-60s. Tuesday morning lows will be about 10 to 12 degrees milder than Monday morning, bottoming out near 39 or 40 degrees.
Election Day is expected to be nice, with partial sunshine and highs in the upper 60s. Lower 70s are forecast for highs Wednesday. The next chance of rain will come Thursday, with the passage of a cold front.