The Best- and Worst- Columbus Summers on Record

Let’s be honest, Summer 2020 is hardly shaping up to be one of swimming pools and BBQs and beach vacations. With the virus continuing to rage nationally, it’s going to be the kind of summer most people watch from their porches or couches. So in that sense, 2020 certainly ranks up there as one of the worst summers ever. On the other hand, there’s probably going to be a bit less concern as to how the weather is. Still, here’s a look back on Columbus’ best and worst summers when it comes to weather.

I used a basic ranking system, much like I did with my Worst Winters of All Time post a few years back, to determine the severity of each summer’s weather. Here was the point system I used.

On temperature, I added one point for each of the following:
-# of 86 or Above Highs
-# of 70 or Above Lows
-# of 70 or Below Highs
-# of 50 or Below Lows
Each earned the summer a point for each day that featured these conditions, as either extreme heat or low temperatures during summer are generally considered a negative.

With precipitation, I added one point for each of the following:
-# of days with measurable precipitation.
-# of days with at least 1″+ of precipitation.

The more points a summer got, the worse the weather was overall.

Top 10 Worst Summers
1. 1935: 110
2. 1988: 108
3. 1949: 99
4. 1936, 1944, 1955: 97
5. 2012: 96
6. 1881, 1947, 1980, 1999, 2005: 94
7. 1901, 1916, 1931: 93
8. 1934, 1940, 2018: 91
9. 1941, 1977: 90
10. 1943, 1987: 88
If you like either very hot, very wet or summers with a combination of both conditions, these ones were for you.

Top 10 Best Summers
1. 1904: 43
2. 1967, 1971: 44
3. 1922, 1960, 1984: 47
4. 2000: 49
5. 1962: 50
6. 1950, 1981: 51
7. 1884, 1886, 1985: 52
8. 1889, 2009: 53
9. 1929: 56
10. 1905, 1976: 57
If you prefer, instead summers with little extreme heat and drier conditions, these were the best.

Now, you might wonder which decade had the best average and worst average summers.
1960s: 64.0
1900s: 66.2
1970s: 67.2
1920s: 67.8
1980s: 70.2
1880s: 70.9
1950s, 2000s: 71.2
1990s: 73.6
1890s: 75.1
1910s: 76.0
2010s: 78.7
1870s: 80.0
1930s: 81.9
1940s: 85.9
The 1960s had the best average score, with the 1940s easily claiming the top prize for worst.

To see a lot more summer records, check out: Summer Season Records



Halloween Weather History and Climatology




Top 10 Coldest Highs
1. 1906: 38
2. 1993: 39
3. 1878, 1895: 40
4. 1913, 1923, 1954: 41
5. 1885, 1917, 2012: 42
6. 1890: 43
7. 1908, 1925, 1926, 2017: 44
8. 1898, 1905: 45
9. 1930, 1976: 46
10. 1879, 1931, 2002: 47

Top 10 Coldest Lows
1. 1887: 20
2. 1962, 1988: 25
3. 1923: 27
4. 1908, 1925: 28
5. 1885, 1893, 1913, 1917, 1953, 1975: 29
6. 1904, 1906: 30
7. 1878, 1938, 1954, 1968: 31
8. 1928, 1934, 1949, 1958, 1964, 1976, 1980, 2000: 32
9. 1879, 1926, 1930, 2017: 33
10. 1890, 1936, 1951, 1966, 1969, 1993, 1996, 2002, 2008, 2010: 34

Top 10 Coldest Means
1. 1906, 1923: 34
2. 1913: 35
3. 1878, 1885, 1908, 1917, 1925, 1954: 36
4. 1887, 1962, 1993: 37
5. 1895: 38
6. 1890, 1926, 1976, 1988, 2017 39
7. 1879, 1930, 2012: 40
8. 2002: 41
9. 1893, 1894, 1898, 1905, 1975, 1996: 42
10. 1939, 1955, 2010: 43

Top 10 Warmest Highs
1. 1950: 83
2. 1974: 80
3. 1900: 79
4. 1927, 1933: 78
5. 1979, 2003: 75
6. 1882, 1901, 1982, 1999: 74
7. 1909, 1990: 73
8. 1888, 1935, 1944, 1987 72
9. 1915, 1971: 71
10. 1919: 70

Top 10 Warmest Lows
1. 1919: 61
2. 1882: 60
3. 2003: 59
4. 1927, 1929: 58
5. 1900, 1956, 2013: 57
6. 1921, 1941, 1982, 2018: 56
7. 1950: 55
8. 1959, 1979: 54
9. 1971: 53
10. 1881, 1891, 1933, 1946, 1974, 1991: 52

Top 10 Warmest Means
1. 1950: 69
2. 1900, 1927: 68
3. 1882, 2003: 67
4. 1919, 1974: 66
5. 1933, 1979, 1982: 65
6. 1901, 1929, 1956: 63
7. 1971, 2013: 62
8. 1890, 1999: 61
9. 1909, 1921, 1935, 1941, 1946, 1991, 2018: 60
10. 1984, 2001: 59

Top 10 Wettest
1. 2019: 1.51″
2. 1932: 1.44″
3. 2009: 1.21″
4. 2013: 0.98″
5. 1941: 0.97″
6. 1919: 0.91″
7. 2018: 0.63″
8. 1942: 0.51″
9. 1960: 0.45″
10. 1905, 1973: 0.43″

Top 10 Snowiest
1. 1993: 1.0″
2. 1954: 0.2″
3. 1906, 1917, 1926, 1930, 2012, 2019: Trace



Winter 2018-2019 Review



Winter 2018-2019 was another one of extremes, with record highs and near record lows, snowy months and snowless months. The only real consistency was how wet it was.

December-February Only
Average High: 41.4 22nd Warmest
Average Low: 26.4 21st Warmest
Mean: 33.8 24th Warmest
Precipitation: 12.15″ 8th Wettest
Snowfall: 23.3″ 35th Snowiest
Average Daily Snow Depth: 0.5″

Entire Cold Season- October-April
Average High: 49.7 27th Warmest
Average Low: 33.3 25th Warmest
Mean: 41.5 23rd Warmest
Precipitation: 29.33″ 3rd Wettest
Snowfall: 27.4″
Average Snow Depth: 0.2″

Average High By Month
October 2018: 65.7 43rd Warmest
November 2018: 45.2 8th Coldest
December 2018: 44.1 21st Warmest
January 2019: 36.6 48th Coldest
February 2019: 43.4 25th Warmest
March 2019: 47.5 36th Coldest
April 2019: 65.4 21st Warmest

Average Low By Month
October 2018: 47.2 25th Warmest
November 2018: 33.2 28th Coldest
December 2018: 30.6 15th Warmest
January 2019: 22.2 47th Warmest
February 2019: 26.3 33rd Warmest
March 2019: 28.7 27th Coldest
April 2019: 44.6 12th Warmest

Mean By Month
October 2018: 56.5 28th Warmest
November 2018: 39.2 14th Coldest
December 2018: 37.3 18th Warmest
January 2019: 29.4 51st Coldest
February 2019: 34.8 30th Warmest
March 2019: 38.1 34th Coldest
April 2019: 55.0 14th Warmest

Precipitation By Month
October 2018: 2.60″ 43rd Wettest
November 2018: 5.70″ 4th Wettest
December 2018: 3.57″ 30th Wettest
January 2019: 3.09″ 47th Wettest
February 2019: 5.49″ 6th Wettest
March 2019: 5.33″ 15th Wettest
April 2019: 3.55″ 54th Wettest

Snowfall By Month
October 2018: 0.0″
November 2018: 2.1″
December 2018: 0.4″
January 2019: 11.3″
February 2019: 11.6″
March 2019: 2.0″
April 201: 0.0″

Average Snow Depth By Month
October 2018: 0.0″
November 2018: Trace
December 2018: 0.0″
January 2019: 1″
February 2019: 0.5″
March 2019: 0.1″
April 2019: 0.0″

Maximum High By Month
October: 88 on the 6th and 8th
November: 61 on the 1st
December: 66 on the 2nd
January: 62 on the 8th
February: 62 on the 7th
March: 75 on the 14th
April: 82 on the 11th

Minimum High By Month
October: 49 on the 21st
November: 30 on the 28th
December: 28 on the 8th
January: 11 on the 31st
February: 22 on the 1st
March: 20 on the 5th
April: 43 on the 1st

Maximum Low By Month
October: 69 on the 2nd and 9th
November: 50 on the 5th
December: 46 on the 15th
January: 41 on the 8th
February: 43 on the 6th
March: 51 on the 14th and 29th
April: 64 on the 18th

Minimum Low By Month
October: 32 on the 22nd and 25th
November: 22 on the 10th and 11th
December: 16 on the 10th
January: -4 on the 30th and 31st
February: 9 on the 2nd
March: 7 on the 5th
April: 24 on the 1st

Highest Daily Precipitation By Month
October: 0.63″ on the 31st
November: 1.16″ on the 15th
December: 1.01″ on the 31st
January: 0.81″ on the 19th
February: 1.22″ on the 20th
March: 1.97″ on the 30th
April: 0.77″ on the 19th

Highest Daily Snowfall By Month
October: 0.0″
November: 1.3″ on the 15th
December: 0.2″ on the 5th
January: 4″ on the 12th
February: 4.2″ on the 1st
March: 1.9″ on the 3rd
April: 0.0″

Deepest Snow Depth By Month
October: 0″
November: 1″
December: 0″
January: 4″ on the 13th and 20th
February: 4″ on the 1st and 2nd
March: 2″ on the 1st
April: 0″

Overall, the winter of 2018-2019, while having a few cold spells, was largely warmer than normal. It was also wet and had snowfall near normal.