Imagine this kind of weather whiplash: a town in northern Siberia went from minus 60 degrees Fahrenheit this winter to over 100 degrees - and all of that took place in just a few months.
In Verkhoyansk, Russia, the mercury soared to 100.4 degrees on Saturday, which is likely to verify as the warmest temperature ever recorded north of the Arctic Circle, according to The Washington Post
. The World Climate Service on Saturday said the 100.4 reading was likely to challenge the hottest temperature ever recorded north of the Arctic Circle, with the possible current record-holder an 100 degree reading in Fort Yukon, Alaska in 1915.
French meteorologist Etienne Kapikian noted on Twitter on Saturday that temperatures at the upper levels of the atmosphere were near 70 degrees Fahrenheit, likely helping lead credence to the surface temperature observation.
Verkhoyansk is located just north of the Arctic Circle, and it has recorded the coldest temperature outside of the Antarctica. In February 1892, this northern Siberian outpost dropped to a shocking -90.0 degrees Fahrenheit level, the coldest temperature ever recorded there. Verkhoyansk's average low in January is -55 degrees Fahrenheit, and temperatures here regularly drop to -70 degrees or below.
Meanwhile, meteorologists around the world have noted - with concern - an exceptional heat dome that's built in across Siberia, which is a largely continental area of central and eastern Russia. Typically known for its vast, dense forests and bitter cold during the winter, wildfires have ravaged the region all month long.
Temperatures in Siberia and throughout northern and central Russia have been running more than 10 degrees above average so far this month, contributing to the wildfires and the record heat observed in Verkhoyansk over the weekend.
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