Morning commuters were greeted with a crust of snow -- the first accumulation of the season -- and whipping cold that was 23 degrees lower than the day before.
The temperature at O'Hare International Airport was 23 degrees at 7 a.m. today, with a wind chill of 11. The same time Monday it was a pleasant 46 degrees.
The cold Canadian air barreled through the Chicago area Monday, turning rain into wet snow just in time for the evening rush hour. A total of 0.4 inches was recorded at O’Hare and 0.3 inches at Midway. Elsewhere, 1.7 inches were recorded in McHenry, 1.3 inches in Mundelein, 0.8 inches in Gurnee and Addison, 1.7 inches in Oak Brook and 0.5 inches in Rogers Park.
The snowfall was the season’s first accumulation of snow, about five days earlier than usual. On average, the first day of recorded snowfall is around Nov. 16, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Charles Mott.
A few other reasons to be excited by .04 inches of snow: It was nearly as much as all of the November snowfalls combined since 2008. It marked Chicago's heaviest early season snow since 2006 when 0.3 inches came down. It was the snowiest Veteran’s Day in the last 18 years.
Last year, we waited until Dec. 20 for the first measurable snow. That was the latest the Chicago area had to wait since official snow measurements began in the 1884-85 season.
The cold is not breaking any records and won't be staying around for much of the week. The high today is expected to be around 33, then upper 30s Wednesday, upper 40s Thursday and Friday and 50s and rain for the weekend.