Since Fargo-Moorhead weather recordings began in 1881, the average lowest temperature of the winter season is minus 28 degrees. The coldest temperature on record is 48 degrees below zero set Jan. 8, 1887. On average, the temperature falls to at least minus 20 degrees seven days per cold temperature season.
On occasion, a winter goes by without ever reaching 20 degrees below zero. In the winter of 2001-02, the coldest temperature was minus 10 degrees, which is the mildest lowest temperature of any winter on record. Last winter, the lowest temperature was minus 33 degrees, and that was the first reading in the minus 30s since 2010.
This winter so far, the coldest temperature has been 24 degrees below zero on Jan. 11 and again on Jan. 16. With our subtle warming trend in recent decades, the frequency of those really cold days has been subtly decreasing. Very cold weather still happens, but a little less frequently.