Bitterly cold temps greet New Year in Los Alamos

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As the New Year began, bitterly cold temperatures were on hand to greet any revelers who may have been brave enough to venture out to welcome 2011.

At the stroke of midnight temperatures dipped to -4 degrees,  according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration instruments at Los Alamos Airport. That was warmer than earlier in the evening when the mercury dipped to -9 before winds calmed just prior to midnight.

The forecast calls for a high Saturday of 20 with a low Sunday morning of 2 degrees. Sunday's high will manage to creep just above freezing at 33 followed by a low of 10. Monday's high is expected to hit 38 and a low of 11 degrees.

As a massive cold front swept eastward Friday, residents of the Los Alamos area were left with the task of digging out from the 8-12 inches of snow left behind earlier in the week. A Canadian airmass settled in behind the front, which resulted in the below average temperatures that will be present for the next few days.

Along with the bone-chilling temperatures, the National Weather Service and the State Department of Homeland Security are urging people to take precautions. Dress warmly in layers, and keep pets inside.