Spring Fever: Record Warm-up in Store for Many
Mar 12, 2012
If you like warm weather, chances are this will be your week –- unless you live in the Rockies.
Temperatures across much of the lower 48 are expected to surge this week, running as much as 20° to 35° above average across the Midwest and Northeast. Many weather watchers are predicting high-temperature records will be broken across much of the country by midweek.
The warm temperatures will begin Monday and continue through the end of the week. Many areas of the Midwest and Northeast will see temperatures surge to record levels, bringing daytime highs more reminiscent of May than March.
By midweek, high temperatures in the 70s are expected as far north as the Northern Plains and temperatures in the 80s are possible from Kansas south. Temperatures across New England will soar well into the 60s on Monday and approach 80 near Washington, D.C., by midweek.
The warm weather follows the fourth-warmest meteorological winter on record (meteorological winter lasts from December to February). Many weather watchers expect record highs to be set across the country this week –- continuing the warmer-than-normal trend most of the country has been experiencing in recent months.
But not all of us will enjoy warm weather.
The once anemic snowpack in the Rockies will be bolstered by a series of storms as the jet stream takes a dip across the western U.S.
|Snow water equivalent across the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Image courtesy of NOAA.
By midweek, a series of storms will begin to impact the Western U.S., bringing heavy snow to the Sierra Nevada Mountains and parts of the Cascades. Welcome rains will also fall across the lower elevations of Northern and Central California.
At the end of February, the snowpack across the Sierra Nevada Mountains was only 30% of normal, compared to 120% at this time last year.
Thanks to last year’s above-average snowpack, reservoirs fed by the melting Sierra Nevada snows are still running near or above average -– reducing the chance for water restrictions across the watershed.