Iowa experienced its first burst of bitterly cold temperatures to start the New Year, which made me wonder – How many days per year does Waterloo usually have BELOW ZERO?

Since 1949, the city has averaged around 20 days per year with below zero temperatures. The most in a calendar year is a whopping 47 days in 1962. Brrr.

2021 featured 20 days below zero in Black Hawk County, including a brutal stretch of 15 consecutive days with the low temperatures below zero from February 6th through February 20th. 2020 had only half that amount of days below zero with just 10, according to data from the Iowa Environmental Mesonet.

Iowa Environmental Mesonet
Iowa Environmental Mesonet

In the month of January, Waterloo averages just under nine days with below zero temperatures. Out of the past 128 years, the day in January with the least occurrences with below zero temperatures is January 11th.

The all-time record low temperature in the month of January in Waterloo is a bone-chilling -34* set in 2009. The WARMEST record low in January is -21* set three times, most recently in 2018 on January 1 and January 2.

The average LOW temperature in January in Waterloo is only 10.7* and the average high is just 28.2*, according to the National Weather Service in Des Moines.

If you’re dreaming of warm weather in the month of January, you better stay in hibernation. To no surprise, it has NEVER reached 70* or warmer during the first month of the year in Waterloo. The all-time high temperature in January in the city is 65*, set on January 26, 2002. The ‘coldest’ HIGH-temperature record in January is just 49* on January 4th, 2007. That’s just one degree shy of the all-time record low HIGH temperature for the city of 48*, set on February 1, 1931, according to the National Weather Service in Des Moines.


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