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Cold just seems to define January in Eastern Montana, but last week saw record highs tumble. And this week in 1953 also broke out of the mold.

Here are the details and a look at some bits of weather history for Jan. 8-14 in Montana from the National Weather Service.

On Jan. 8: Billings received 0.1 inches of snow, the only measurable snowfall for the month in 2006.

In 1997 near Columbus, an ice jam broke loose, causing the Yellowstone to rapidly rise quickly 3 to 4 feet. The flood damaged a house and some farm equipment.

On Jan. 9: Sheridan received 11.6 inches of snow on Jan. 8 and 9 in 1997, while Story was blanketed with 2 feet. The heavy snow was followed by a very cold arctic airmass from Jan. 10 to 14 as temperatures plummeted to minus 35 on Jan. 12, the fifth-coldest all-time temperature.

On Jan. 10: Wet times in Livingston in 1980 as 14.7 inches of snow fell. The 1.60 inches of water contained in the snow was the 12th all-time high for daily precipitation at any time of year. Also receiving significant snow were Mystic Lake, with 14 inches; Red Lodge, 12; and Columbus, 6.

On Jan. 11: Billings basked in its record-warmest January temperature at 68 degrees. Billings' low on Jan. 12 was 49, the record-warmest low for January in the city. In contrast, in 1963, Burgess Junction had a low of minus 44.

On Jan. 12: 1997 saw the record-coldest January temperature at Billings at minus 30 and in Sheridan at 35 below. The cities each recorded highs of minus 15.

On Jan. 13: Billings had a low of minus 22 in 1997.

On Jan. 14: Rural areas of Custer and Fallon counties had lows near minus 40 in 2005. Miles City's high climbed only to 11 below.

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