Wednesday, March 13, 2013

(Official) winter ends with question marks

The last few days of "official" winter will end with an uncertain forecast in the Charlotte region, and that includes the weekend, meteorologists say.

Meteorological winter ended Feb. 28, but according to the calendar, spring doesn't start until later next week.

There have been a few mild days this month, but for the most part, it has been chilly and rather wet. That trend could continue later this week.

A gradual warming trend is expected to start Friday, and originally, the weekend forecast was superb. Meteorologists were predicting highs near 70 degrees Saturday and in the middle to upper 60s Sunday. That could change -- in a downward direction.

A "back door" cold front is predicted to push southward Saturday. A "back door" front is one that moves south to north, rather than the typical west to east. When back door fronts move southward into South Carolina, a cold air wedge often becomes established in North Carolina -- with a northeast wind off the ocean, lots of clouds, chilly temperatures, and a bit of rain.

Computer models are wrestling with the southward movement of the back door front. If it stays north of Charlotte, we would have a very warm weekend.  If it pushes into South Carolina, our weekend weather could be chilly and damp.

The uncertainty extends into the beginning of next week.

The good thing about cool weather and rain is its impact on agricultural and horticultural interests. With temperatures remaining below average, the water evaporation rate from the soil has been a lot lower than during March 2012, which was a record-setter for warmth.


Winter is Alive!! said...

But, you proclaimed "Winter is dead" only last Friday.

And which is it---"back door cold front is predicted to push southward" or "back door front is one that moves south to north?" Is it moving southward...or northward???

Anonymous said...

Was this "possibility" yanked out of tin air?? There seems to be no indication of any "back door" cold air coming into NC.

Anonymous said...

Winter has not ended, and it is quite cold out this eve.