More Record Lows Broken -- But Relief Is On The Way

By Justin Gehrts, KCRG-TV9 Meteorologist

Ice crystals form inside a window as temperatures hover below zero Monday morning, Jan. 27, 2014, in Cedar Rapids. (Liz Martin/KCRG-TV9)

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By Richard Pratt

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- Exceptionally cold air broke record lows across Eastern Iowa this morning.

In Cedar Rapids, the low fell to -21. That broke the previous record of -20, which was set all the way back in 1899. In Waterloo, the low fell to -25, breaking its record of -24 set in 1899. Dubuque also tied its record low from 1899, falling to -18. In Iowa City, the low was -19, just shy of the record of -20.

Some locations in the favored river valleys were even colder. For example, the low in Elkader this morning was -29.

So far this season, Cedar Rapids has spent more than 350 hours at or below zero. This puts it in second place for most hours at or below zero since such hourly data began in 1973. It has just surpassed the winter of 1978-1979, and is only behind the brutal winter of 1977-1978. That winter had 475 hours at or below zero.

Relief from the Arctic cold is coming. While highs will only reach the single digits above zero today, warmer winds will send more tolerable air our way soon. We are expecting high temperatures at or above 20 degrees from tomorrow through at least next Wednesday. Some days should even get above 30 degrees.

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