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10-Day Outlook: That 70s Show?

Josh Larson @ 12:00 AM

Today's Forecast

Today's forecast calls for mostly cloudy skies with a few stray showers or sprinkles, especially north of town, during the first half of the day. Expect increasing sunshine and much milder temperatures by afternoon: highs will approach 65 in many locations. Partly cloudy overnight with lows only dropping to the mid to upper 40s.

Pattern Overview

I said in last week's post that we were likely to experience "one more week of winter and then on to spring." Indeed, temperatures over the past week have been below average, and we're poised to see temperatures average a whopping 10-15 degrees above normal over at least the next five days. What's the reason for this late April-like "warmth"?

Now that blocking in Canada has broken down, the jet stream is allowing for a much more westerly storm track. Over the next week, we'll see a broad trough over the western US, and, on the eastern side of that trough, we'll see several strong areas of low pressure ride right up the Ohio Valley into Great Lakes and western New England. As a result, we'll see ridging over our area and we will stay warm (and for the most part) dry as very strong southwesterly winds aloft build over our region. (See image above; courtesy

Expect temperatures over the next 5 days to average 10-15 degrees above average, with a mixture of clouds and some sun most days and a few chances for a brief shower in spots -- especially today and Friday. Temperatures are likely to re-align back to more realistic levels by the middle of next week; thus, I suspect that the following 5 days will see temperatures near normal -- and back to the mid 50s.

The next 5 days (Mar 9-13)

Forecast highs/lows: 69/49 (normal = 54/36)
Forecast precip: below normal

If you think today's temperatures, in the low to mid 60s, are warm, just wait until tomorrow! Friday will feature a similar mostly cloudy morning, with a stray sprinkle or shower possible in spots. Partial sunshine will develop during the afternoon hours. Expect unseasonably warm high temperatures 70-75; the areas that see the most sunshine will see the warmest readings. I would not be surprised if some of our friends to the south and west flirt with the 80 degree mark! Saturday will feature continued warm conditions, with highs in the upper 60s to lower 70s, under mostly sunny skies, and lows near 50. Sunday will feature a mix of clouds and sun with a slight chance of a stray shower, and temperatures again near 70 during the afternoon and near 50 overnight. Continued warm and dry conditions are expected on Monday, with highs again near 70 and overnight lows in the mid to upper 40s.

The next 5 days (Mar 14-18)

Forecast highs/lows: 55/38 (normal = 56/38)
Forecast precip: near normal

The following 5 days will feature a return to much more typical weather for the middle of March, though Tuesday is likely to still remain quite mild, with highs in the mid 60s and overnight lows in the mid 40s. However, the period next Wednesday through Saturday will feature temperatures back to their seasonal averages -- in the low to mid 50s for highs, and in the low to mid 30s for overnight lows. It's too early to accurately predict potential chances for precipitation, but, at this point, the second half of the week doesn't look wet. Long-term guidance suggests a brief return to below normal temperatures are possible by the beginning of the third week of March.

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