Despite that mega-snowstorm in January and a seasonal snow total securely above average, the meteorological winter that ended Monday finished was the third-warmest in the 142 in the Philadelphia record book.
With a leap-day high of 64 at 12:57 p.m., the Dec. 1-Feb. 29 period – that's the meteorological winter – the average temperature would come in at 41.4.
That nosed out the 41.3 of 2001-2002, but the 42.2 of 1890, which is No. 2, and the all-time champ, 43.3 in 1932, are safe for at least another winter.
(We should note that the meteorological community breaks down the seasons in three-month increments. The astronomical seasons actually are of slightly different lengths, depending on equinoctial and solstice dates.)
This season's run at the top was all about December, which ended with an astonishing average of 51.2, far, far and away a record for a December in Philadelphia.
To put that in perspective, that 51.2 would have been 2.6 degrees above the normal temperature for November.
January's 34.2 degree average was slightly above normal, and February closed out at 2.9 above.
The temperature for the 2015-16 meteorological winter also received a boost from the calendar. Had February ended on Sunday, the monthly average would have been 41.3, putting this one in a virtual tie with 2001-02.
As for worldwide warming, climate specialists warn against putting too much stock in what happens to temperatures in one location.
That said, Philadelphia winter temperatures track fairly closely to what has happened worldwide.
The 30-year average for winter temperatures in Philly is just over 36 degrees; the long-term average is 34.5