The long weekend’s cold weather may seem unbearable, but it could be worse – a lot worse.

The coldest days ever recorded in Portland were on Feb. 15 and 16, 1943, when temperatures hit 31 and 39 degrees below zero, respectively, said Chris Kimble, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Gray.

That makes Monday’s projected low of minus 7 seem almost balmy and Tuesday’s forecast of temperatures in the 40s practically tropical.

Things have already been heating up since Sunday morning’s low of minus 10 – seven degrees warmer than the Valentine’s Day record low, set in 2003.

The high temperature during the day Sunday got close to the lowest for Feb. 14 at 12 degrees, but was 3 degrees too warm to make history.

Snow is expected to start Monday night, Kimble said, but as the temperature rises Tuesday, it should turn to sleet and, eventually, plain old rain. That’s certainly nothing for the books.


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