Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012 | 11:22 a.m.
Las Vegas finally snapped its longest stretch ever without a freeze — 378 days — on Thursday morning, with some parts of the valley plunging into the mid 20s.
The predawn low at McCarran International Airport bottomed out at 30 degrees, said Andrew Gorelow, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service.
It was the first time McCarran fell below the 32-degree freezing mark since Dec. 7, 2011, and the longest period on record in Las Vegas between freezes, Gorelow said.
McCarran won’t have to wait long for the next freeze — another round of frigid temperatures is expected Friday morning, the first day of winter.
“Most locations in the valley will see 25 to 30 again,” Gorelow said. McCarran should see a low of 31.
Thursday morning’s lowest temperature readings were in outlying areas of the valley, away from the Strip and the downtown, Gorelow said.
The lowest temperature recorded Thursday morning in the valley was 24 degrees, near the Springs Preserve at Alta Drive and Valley View Boulevard.
Other cold spots in the valley were 25 degrees at Henderson Executive Airport, 27 at the North Las Vegas Airport and 28 at Nellis Air Force Base.
West of the valley, a weather station at Red Rock Canyon had a reading of 20 degrees. Mount Charleston, which is at 8,187 feet, recorded a low at 6 a.m. of 17 degrees, with a 9 mph south-southwest breeze causing a wind chill of 5 degrees.
Thursday’s highs are expected to range from 43 on the west side of the valley to 46 on the east side. Friday’s highs will be 45 to 50 degrees on the west side of the valley and 49 to 54 on the east side.
Gorelow said a slight warm-up is on the way for the weekend.
Saturday’s morning lows will be from 32 to 35 across the valley. Highs will range from 50 to 55 on the west side of the valley to 54 to 59 on the east side.