The question most are asking at this point is, when we can expect warmer temps? This week two years ago there were boats on the Hudson and we had temps in the 70’s to near 80 degrees. This year has obviously been drastically different, we still have snow pack across most of the region, you could walk on the Hudson near Kingston last week and temps continue to linger below average for the middle of March. Im sure you didn’t need me to be captain obvious with those statistics, but they are certainly worth mentioning. Now back to the question, when will it warm up? The first day of spring is only days away and cabin fever is running deep across the Hudson Valley. The answer is not anytime soon, a glance at some of the long range data supports the fact that cold air, and below average temps are going to linger right into the beginning of April (commence deep sighs, and obscenities). While we will experience a period of warmer temps for Wednesday through Saturday we will ultimately slide back down to below average temps to close the week, and this round looks to linger through the end of March. While we cannot definitively say that winter weather will accompany this cold air, it would be foolish to discredit this upcoming patterns ability to support more winter weather for our region.
Lets take a look at some of the actual data that reflects this upcoming long range pattern:
First we take a look at the warm up period that we will see beginning as early as tomorrow, but noticeable by Wednesday into Saturday. Below is a model image that shows temperature anomaly above the climatological average at 850MB (5000 Ft up),basically above the zero line is above average, and below is of-course below average.
As you can see we aren’t talking a major heat wave by any means, lets see how these warmer temps at 5000 feet translate into the temperature at the surface. Below is a model forecast for high temps on Thursday which will likely be the climax of the upcoming warm period.
Now that we lead with the good, lets show the bad and the ugly, below is the same temperature anomaly model image for the period of around March 24th. As you can see it is painting a much different picture for our region with temp anomalies well below the average for that March period.
Next is the same model forecast for the March 27th period which may turn even colder yet with the temp anomaly bottoming out the color scale.
Now if this were January or February we would be talking about temps below zero or in the single digits for highs, but this is late March and temps this below average don’t equate to anything in that realm. Below is a look at how temp anomalies that low would equate to the surface temps on the day of March 25th as an example.
Now some of these forecasts are going quite far into the long range and certainly cannot be taken verbatim, but the overall idea is that we will be likely dealing with more below average temps for the reminder of the month. Just how certain is it that temps will be below average? Lets take a look at the Climate Prediction Center’s forecasted probabilities for below average temps in both the 6-10 day period and the 8-14 day period.
Yes, that reads a 80-90 percent probability for below average temps for the remainder of the month, like I said in the title, don’t kill the messenger! Don’t worry HV, we are a resilient bunch and we have overcome much worse than some below average temps, and at least now you know there coming, stay warm my friends!