Are 80 degree temps in December through February possible in Chicago?

Dear Tom,
In the winter months of December, January and February with the sun low in the sky, it would seem impossible for the temperature ever to reach 80 degrees. Is this true? I’m trying to think “warm.”
— Robert Ernst, Chicago
Dear Robert,
You are correct. Chicago’s temperature has never risen to 80 degrees or higher in the winter months of December, January and February from the year 1870 to the present. The highest reading ever recorded in those months is 75 degrees on Feb. 27, 1976. A reading of 72 degrees was recorded on Feb. 25, 2000; six other readings of 70 or 71 degrees were registered in February and December, but January’s highest temperature has never made it to 70 degrees: The highest January reading is 67 degrees, recorded on Jan. 25, 1950.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.