When Ted and I biked on Sunday, the high temperature was 67 degrees. When we biked past the National Weather Service on the MO Research Park of the Busch Greenway, Ted wanted to stop in to see some of his previous co-workers. While we were chatting, one of the forecasters told us they were preparing to issue a winter weather advisory for Monday. And so they did–just a short while after we left to continue our bike ride.
Those NWS forecasters were spot on, including the flash freeze–except we had more snow than expected. Compare our Sunday (high 67) and Monday (13 degrees) temperatures. I took the Monday picture when we went to bed. Overnight, the temperature dropped some more, down to 8 degrees at our house. The official low temperature (at the airport) was 11 degrees–one degree lower than the previous record of 12 degrees set in 1911–108 years ago!
After biking in 67-degree sunshine Sunday, we woke up Monday to falling snow that continued until late afternoon. The previous record for snowfall on November 11 was one inch in 1991; the airport had an official 1.5 inches yesterday, and we had 2 inches at our house. The average date for a St. Louis snowfall of at least one inch is December 21–more than a month later than this.
After the snow stopped, the skies cleared, the moon appeared, the temperature dropped some more, and a meteor streaked across the sky just before 9:00 p.m. Within minutes, people were posting security camera videos of the event.
According to NASA, the meteor was a basketball-size piece of rock that broke off from the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter before entering Earth’s atmosphere. It passed near St. Louis just 59 miles above the ground and continued for about 70 miles before breaking into pieces when it was about 12 miles above the ground. The meteor traveled at 33,500 mph, creating a sonic boom that was heard for miles.
Ted and I didn’t see the meteor first-hand because we weren’t outside in the cold for the few seconds it streaked through the sky, but videos show a bright flash as the meteor streaked by. If we had been outside and seen the flash, we’d have probably looked at each other and asked, “What was that?” and the meteor would already have been out of sight.
The temperature didn’t go up much today, As a result, we also set another 100+ year record for the lowest maximum temperature for today. We made it up to 21 degrees. The previous record low maximum was 22 degrees, also set in 1911. The normal high for today is 58 degrees.
What a day, with record low temperatures, record snowfall, and a falling meteor, all within less than 24 hours.