Where is the coldest city in Texas?

(NEXSTAR) — It’s a name no one is going to brag about, but Amarillo residents can claim to live in the coldest big city in Texas, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

This difference does not mean that everything is so cold in Amarillo compared to other cities in the US. In fact, NOAA data compiled by Stacker identified the coldest cities in all 50 states and found that Texas isn’t even among the 150 coldest cities in America. Of the 266 studied, 171 people have a lower average temperature.

However, with a 30-year average of 57.3 degrees, the High Plains can be slightly colder than other parts of Texas. The average temperature in Houston last year was 70.5 degrees, according to federal data. The Dallas area averaged 68.2 degrees last year, according to NOAA.

“Amarillo is undoubtedly the coldest (big) city in Texas. The lowest temperature on record was -12 degrees in 1986. However, just two years ago, we were close to tying this dubious record to a low of -11 degrees on February 15, 2021,” said KAMR Chief Meteorologist John Harris.

Geography, and by extension climate, is what sets Amarillo apart.

“We are north of any other city in Texas. We see all 4 seasons here in the Panhandle,” said Harris, who points to low humidity lowering nighttime temperatures, especially in winter.

This low humidity can be a real advantage during the warmer months.

“Less humidity makes the 90s more bearable since we don’t usually have a heat index per se,” he said. “We see beautiful sunrises and sunsets almost all year round due to less clouds.”

According to data compiled by Stacker, Amarillo’s average daily high is 70.9 degrees and the average daily low is 43.8 degrees. It’s wider and warmer than the coldest city in other major states like California, Illinois and New York.

Although it wasn’t included in the study, Harris said the title of “the coldest city in Texas” likely belongs to Dalhart, about 80 miles northwest of Amarillo. On January 4, 1959, a low temperature of -21 degrees was recorded in the city.

According to a Stacker report, the coldest city in the US is Utqiagvik (formerly known as Barrow) in Alaska. The average daily temperature here is 11.7 degrees.

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