Dear Tom,

Has Chicago ever recorded a subzero reading in November?

-Patty Kinsler

Dear Patty,In a typical winter Chicago officially logs eight subzero days, with the first one typically occurring around the start of the new year.  Though extremely rare, the city has recorded some subzero temperatures in November.  Chicago climatologist Frank Wachowski reports that dating back to 1870, there have been just five occurrences, the earliest occurring on back-to-back mornings in 1950, a low of one below on November 23, followed by a reading of two below on November 24.  The three November other occurrences were lows of minus 2 on November 29, 1872,  minus one on November 29, 1887, and minus one on November 30, 1947.  On the other end of the spectrum, the city’s latest subzero occurred on March 22, 1888 when the mercury fell to minus one.