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Fall Frost/Freeze Information

Graphic Updated: Tue 10/01/2013, 1147 AM EDT

When does the first freeze of the fall season normally occur?

A temperature of 32°F or colder has officially been recorded as early as September 28th at Cincinnati and September 21st at both Columus and Dayton. However, elements such as topography, urban vs. rural setting, and siting of a recording instrument can create wide variations in temperatures across a given area.

National Weather Service temperatures are officially recorded at an elevation of 5 feet above the ground, but the temperature at ground level may be colder. On typical fall nights when frost occurs, the temperature at the 5-foot level may read 36°, while at ground level it may actually be 32° and cold enough for frost to develop.

The following reference table will give an idea as to when the first freezing temperatures might occur in the fall, based on the latest 30 years of climatological data available at each of the listed locations. A graphical depiction of the average first freeze date and the end dates for fall frost/freeze headlines also appears below.

                 32F IN FALL     YEAR OUT OF TEN   YEARS OUT OF TEN
                                (10% PROBABILITY)  (90% LIKELIHOOD)


CINCINNATI          OCT 23            OCT 9             NOV 6
DAYTON              OCT 19            OCT 3             NOV 4
HILLSBORO           OCT 24            OCT 7             NOV 9
MILFORD             OCT 13            SEP 28            OCT 29
WILMINGTON          OCT 13            SEP 28            OCT 27
XENIA               OCT 11            SEP 26            OCT 27


CIRCLEVILLE         OCT 19            OCT 2             NOV 4
COLUMBUS            OCT 20            OCT 6             NOV 3
DELAWARE            OCT 9             SEP 27            OCT 22
LONDON              OCT 8             SEP 25            OCT 21
MARYSVILLE          OCT 16            SEP 28            NOV 3
NEWARK              OCT 11            SEP 27            OCT 26
WASHINGTON C.H.     OCT 19            OCT 4             NOV 3


BELLEFONTAINE       OCT 11            SEP 27            OCT 25
GREENVILLE          OCT 8             SEP 25            OCT 22
KENTON              OCT 13            SEP 26            OCT 30
SPRINGFIELD         OCT 10            SEP 29            OCT 20
URBANA              OCT 11            SEP 25            OCT 28


PORTSMOUTH          OCT 17            SEP 28            NOV 4
WAVERLY             OCT 9             SEP 25            NOV 9


CARROLLTON          OCT 20            OCT 8             NOV 1
COVINGTON           OCT 17            OCT 5             OCT 30
MAYSVILLE           OCT 20            OCT 7             NOV 3
WARSAW              OCT 17            OCT 3             OCT 30
WILLIAMSTOWN        OCT 21            OCT 6             NOV 4


RICHMOND            OCT 12            SEP 29            OCT 24
VEVAY               OCT 24            OCT 9             NOV 8

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Page last modified: October 9, 2012.
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