Cold streaks and our current pattern
We have seen our fair share of cold temperatures here in Michiana over the past couple of weeks, but none colder than the past 7 days. The past 7 days have all been under freezing, and it doesn't look like relief from the extreme cold is going any where anytime soon. We will add to this cold stretch as we head into the weekend and next week. The last time we received 7 days in a row of below freezing temperatures was over 2 years ago in January of 2019. The longest streak ever was back in 1976-77 with 37 days.
Why has it been so cold here in Michiana lately? We have to look closely at the atmospheric pattern across the continent. The polar jet stream has migrated further and further south over the past week, and that allows cold polar air to sink further into the United States. The longer the jet stream stays south, the more probable the colder air will remain in place. We aren't the only ones dealing with temperatures in the single digits and teens, lots of places even into the central and southern plains are dealing with well below average temperatures. It's not until the jet stream moves back north that we will see average temperatures for this time of year.