How many times in the last few months have you heard that phrase? Probably none… it is true that some of us just received 10"+ of snow and it's April. But what you may not know (or forgot… it's ok, it happens to the best of us) is that April is what we call a "transition month." What that means is that there are often a wide range of temperatures and weather phenomena. I mean, let's face it, in April you can get 85° and a severe weather outbreak or 20° and a foot of snow (we just had the latter one). So in these months, we really have to expect absolutely everything. Well, it is clearly no different this year. After the wicked cold start, we were given a mild week where 60's and even a few 70's were common. Then we went back to the freezer, but now, next week looks astonishingly warm. Records?? Likely not, but certainly warm enough to classify a day as "warm." So why the big change??
Well, it has to do with our jet stream pattern. This week has had the jet stream dipping south spilling whatever cold air lingered in Canada into Minnesota and much of the U.S. But starting this weekend, the jet stream will become more zonal, or it moves more west to east. This allows more of a southerly or westerly wind to draw up warmer air from the south. Check it out... here is the upper air pattern that is showing up in some of the forecasting computer models for this weekend…
You can see the jet stream being driven northward with 850mb temperatures in the picture below jumping into that green and yellow color which would actually set the stage for 60's and low 70's for much of the region, providing the snow melt doesn't affect temps too much.
Here's the BUT… the pattern looks to stay active with several different disturbances possible right through the end of next week. Any rainfall would likely have an impact on overall temperatures, so this will have to be watched closely.
Here is some more good news… the Climatological Prediction Center agrees. Check out there forecast for the probability of above, normal, or below normal temperatures nationwide starting with the 22nd - 26th timeframe and finishing with the 24th – 30th timeframe.
The CPC seems to agree because they have higher probabilities of getting warmer than average temperatures for much of the eastern two thirds of the country at the beginning and middle of next week. But just like I was talking about, there is less confidence from there. However, they still show better than normal probability of receiving above average temperatures across the central U.S. all the way to the 30th. Spring might finally be arriving!!!